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Desidiam abiiciendam.

Away with idleness.


Quisquis iners abeat, in choenice figere sedem[1],
Nos prohibent Samii[2] dogmata sancta senis.
Surge igitur, duroque manus adsuesce labori,
Det tibi dimensos crastina ut hora cibos.

Let the idle man take himself off -- the holy pronouncements of the old sage of Samos forbid us to sit tight on the bushel-box. Get up therefore, get your hands accustomed to hard work, so that tomorrow’s hour may give you your due measure of sustenance.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [C7r p45]

Faulkeyt ist zu fliehen.


Sich wie es ist ein grosser spot,
Das man sich auff den protkorb leg,
Drumb es Pythagoras verbot:
Und das thuet nur der faul und treg,
Der gedenckt es bleyb im alweg
Gesunder leyb, da er all tag
Sein spey mit fueg gewinnen meg,
De kumbt er dan in not und plag.


1. This saying, which became a proverbial expression of idleness, is quoted in various ancient sources (e.g. Plutarch, De Iside et Osiride10). A bushel was a day’s ration of corn, and ‘to sit on the bushel-box’ (a container holding a bushel measure, and convenient in size for sitting on) meant to be idle and improvident, leaving tomorrow to take care of itself, since today was provided for.

2. ‘the old sage of Samos’, i.e. Pythagoras ([A50a017]).

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