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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [G1r p97]

Dulce venenum.

Sweet poison

Dum coit in suavem mas usum, vipera hiulco,
Si non vana fides, excipit ore caput.
Pòst ubi se satiant, & consuetudine longa
Implevere, gulam dentibus illa fidit.
Luxus suave malum, non sentis, pascit edendo,
Cumque bonis vitam sustulit ante diem.
Quid mihi post mortem natorum illa ultio prodest,
Quod matrem nixus corripuêre nece?

If rumour’s to be trusted, the female viper, as the male is engaged in the sweet business of copulation, bites off his head with gaping mouth. After they satisfy and fill themselves with long intercourse, she trusts her throat with teeth. Do you not think that licence is a sweet evil; and steals life with good things before its time? What use is my childrens’ vengeance if I’m dead, if strivings should punish the mother with death?

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