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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [B8v p32]

Nimium sapere.

Too wise for your own good.

Cominus adversum qui spectat lumine Phoebum,
Nititur & radiis vincere, caecus abit.
Vane quid affectas caelestibus addere lucem,
Ardentemque oculis sollicitare Deum?
Sola potest magni hoc ales prestare Tonantis,
Haec quoque visum acuit, non superare solet.[1]
Alta nimis linque[2], & donata sorte beatum
Te dic, quodque velis esse, fuisse puta.
Non benč conveniunt Phaėthon tibi regna suprema,
Icarus optatis decidit atque polis.

He who stares with rays at a hostile sun, and shining, tries to conquer his light hand to hand, leaves the field blinded. Why do you strive to add a star to the heavenly ones, and call out the burning god with your eyes? Only the eagle of the great Thunderer can do this. She sharpens her sight, though she does not often conquer. Leave things that are too high for you, and admit you are happy in the fate that you’ve been given; think that you have been able to be whatever you wanted. For, Phaethon, the heavenly realms do not agree with you; and Icarus crashed from the poles he so desired to reach.


1.  Apparently the sun’s glare makes the eagle’s sight better (see the French equivalent).

2.  Corrected from the Errata (from linguae).

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