Thursday, February 19, 2009

Alciato CIV: In astrologos

Alciato CIV: In astrologos

Icare, per superos qui raptus et aera, donec
In mare praecipitem cera liquata daret,
Nunc te cera eadem, fervensque resuscitat ignis,
Exemplo ut doceas dogmata certa tuo.
Astrologus caveat quicquam praedicere: praeceps
Nam cadet impostor dum super astra volat.

This image comes from a 1621 edition of the emblems (click on the image for a larger view), and you can also read an English translation online. For help with the Latin, here is the poem presented in an easier-to-read format, with the word order rearranged (the word order in poetry often serves the sound more than the sense), and with the phrase segments clearly marked:
qui raptus
per superos et aera,
cera liquata
daret praecipitem
in mare,
nunc cera eadem,
fervensque ignis
resuscitat te,
ut doceas
dogmata certa
tuo exemplo.
Astrologus caveat
praedicere quicquam:
nam impostor
praeceps cadet
dum super astra volat.
This emblem is based on a poem from the Greek Anthology (16.107), in which the poet is addressing a bronze statue, which explains the reference to the wax and fire reviving Icarus, since those are elements in the bronze maker's art. To learn more about Icarus, see this Wikipedia article. Below you can see some more images from other editions of Alciato's Emblemata:

No comments:

Post a Comment