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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N3r p197]

Avaritia huius saeculi.

The greed of this time

Ad Antonium Muretum.[1]

Aedibus his valvae geminae, quarum altera cultas
Immittit partes, donaque portat hero.
Altera sed vacuos ad sedem ducit inanem,
Clauditur illa inopi, muneribusque patet.
Has procerum clausas Musis nunc repperis aedes,
Et sensus Domini porta bivalva gerit.
Desine mirari, cur saecula nostra poėtas
Tam raros habeant, nil dat avara manus.
Si Maecenates fuerint, Flacci, atque Marones
Existent, grandi bella tubaque canent.[2]
Exulat ingratum carmen, facundia passim
Temnitur, & cultis artibus aula caret.
Potores bibuli nunc prima sedilia, honores,
Et cyathos gnari vertere, cuncta tenent.

There is a double door to this house, one of which grants entry to cultured groups, bringing presents for the master. The other, however, leads the empty-handed to a bare seat. The former is closed to the poor man and open to presents. This is the house of the leading men, which presently you will find to be closed for the muses, and the disposition of the lord has a double door. Do not be surprised that there are so few poets in this time, the greedy hand does not give anything. If there were Maecenases, new Vergils and Horaces would stand up and with loud trumpet sing of the wars. Poetry lives in exile, unappreciated, eloquence is snubbed everywhere and the fine arts are lacking at the court. Currently, eager drinkers sit in the front row, experienced in turning wine-ladles and privileges, ruling everything.


1.  Marc-Antoine Muret: French philologist and priest (d. 1585).

2.  Cf. Martial, Epigrams, 8.55.

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