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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [K4v p80]

LA FORCE DESTITUEE DE CONSEIL,
se renverse par sa pesanteur mesme.

DE tous les monumens, qui semblent despiter
Le temps injurieux, celuy plus on estime,
Qui sur un ferme pied leve en poincte sa cime:
Et semble sa hauteur des nues limiter.

Il ne peut toutesfois sa ruine eviter;
Si son amas pierreux, qui soy mesme s’opprime,
N’a ses joincts glutinez du ciment, qui reprime
L’effort, qui sembleroit contre luy s’irriter.

Le glaive ne maintient la puissance Royale,
Plus haut elle a monté, plus bas elle devalle,
S’elle n’a s’eslevant d’un sainct conseil usé.

Soubs leur propre grandeur & le Romain Empire,
Et le sceptre des Grecs on a veu se destruire,
Pour avoir le ciment de conseil refusé.[1]

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [L1r p81]

Ad Ioannem Posthium Germersemium Medicum.[2]

Vis consilii expers mole ruit sua.[3]

Power lacking counsel crumbles under its own weight.

FRustra se tollit vesana potentia Regum;
Ingenio quoties consilioque vacat.
Cuius ut immodicae crescunt cum tempore vires,
Mole suâ sic cum tempore quassa ruit.

The savage power of kings lifts itself up in vain whenever talents and counsel are lacking. As a man’s unrestrained power grows with time, so with time it crumbles under its own weight.

Notes:

1.  The use of ciment recalls Ezekiel 13:10-16, where God destroys a wall daubed with ‘untempered mortar’ (identified with false prophets), and the parable of the house built on sand, which was similarly detroyed, in Matthew 7:24-27.

2.  Johannes Posthius, from Germersheim, humanist poet and doctor, worked for Julius Echter, Bishop of Würzburg (d. 1597). He is also the dedicatee for two emblems in Boissard’s 1593 collection of emblems (nos. 16 [FBOb016], and 26 [FBOb026]), where he is called ‘Archiatrus Palatinus’ (chief court physician).

3.  A line from Horace, Odes, 3.4.65.


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