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Laeva pudenda manus, sed fortior altera, linguam
Comprimit in Scythico (cernis ut ipse) sene.[1]
Cur hoc? nempe magis vis est fraenanda loquelae,
Quàm Veneris, peius testibus ora nocent.

The left hand covers the part of shame, but the right hand, being stronger, represses the tongue, as you yourself see in the person of the Scythian elder. Why then? Not because it takes greater force to rein in speech than Venus: the mouth does greater harm than the testicles.


Anacharsis de tenir apprenoit
La main senestre à la partie honteuse,
Et la main dextre à la bouche tenoit,
Comme plus forte, en la part plus douteuse.


1.  The ‘Scythian elder’: Anacharsis (as in the French poem), an ancient philosopher who exemplified the wise barbarian, or ‘noble savage’, sometimes included as one of the Seven Sages. Herodotus, The Histories, 4.76ff. See also Junius, emblem 41 ([FJUa041]).

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