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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [X7r p333]

In Trochum.[1]

On the sea-snail.

Lis litem generat.

Law-suits beget more law-suits.

Semet init Trochus, & tandem quoque concipit ex se,
Alteriusque opera non eget ad venerem.
Sic ex lite una sensim lis altera surgit.
Haec venit ŕ nostris noxia Pragmaticis.[2]

The sea-snail inseminates itself, and in due course also conceives its own offspring, and needs no-one else’s help for reproduction [lit. love, sex]. Even so out of one law-suit another will gradually arise. This poison [lit. offence, harm] comes from the lawyers of our times.


1.  Trochus (Greek τροχός) means wheel or hoop; it does not seem to have been used in classical Latin to refer to the sea-snail or its shell that bears its name in modern biological Latin.

2.  Pragmaticus: the learned legal advisers who gave Roman orators their material.

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