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Amicitia etiam post mortem durans.[1]

Friendship lasting even beyond death

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [F6v f33v]

Arentem senio, nudam quoque frondibus ulmum,
Complexa est viridi vitis opaca coma,[2]
Agnoscitque vices naturae, & grata parenti
Officia[3] [=Officii] reddit mutua iura suo.
Exemploque monet, tales nos quaerere amicos
Quos neque disiungat foedere summa dies.

A vine shady with green foliage embraced an elm tree that was dried up with age and bare of leaves. The vine recognises the changes wrought by nature and, ever grateful, renders to the one that reared it the duty it owes in return. By the example it offers, the vine tells us to seek friends of such a sort that not even our final day will uncouple them from the bond of friendship.


Freundtschafft die auch nach dem
Tod wärt.

Ein Ulmbaum so vor alter gar
Verdort und sein laub abgfallen war
Begreiffet mit sein zweigen schön
Der lustig Weinstock also grün
Ist danckbar und beweist gar bald
Gleiche dienst seinem pfleger alt
Erkennt darzu der Natur art
Gstalt, abwechßlung und deß glücks fart
Diß Exempel und vorbild lehrt
Das aller fleiß soll werden ankert
In erwehlung der Rechten freundt
So auch in unglück bstendig seindt.


1.  See Erasmus’ famous variations on this theme in De copia (CWE 24. pp. 354-64).

2.  In ancient Italy young vines were often supported by elm trees. See Vergil, Georgics 1.2.

3.  The errata suggest ‘Officio’, but this reading is not supported by other editions.

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