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The Wise.


Iane bifrons, qui iam transacta futuraque calles,
Quique retro sannas, sicut & ant, vides:[1]
Te tot cur oculis, cur fingunt vultibus? an qud
Circumspectum hominem forma fuisse docet?

Two-headed Janus, you know about what has already happened and what is yet to come, you see the jeering faces behind just as you see them in front. Why do they represent you with so many eyes and faces? Is it because this form tells us that you were a man of circumspection?


1. quique retro sannas, sicut et ante, vides, ‘you see the jeering faces behind just as you see them in front’, a line based on Persius, Satirae, 1.58-62.

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View emblem in Mason Tung: Variorum Edition of Alciato. (PDF)

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