Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Si Sciens Fallo

Here is today's emblem and distich by Gabriel Rollenhagen, Book 1.38, with an English rendering by George Wither. Wither's poem explains the symbolism of the pig which you can see in the emblem:
When th'Ancients made a solemne League or Vow,
Their Custome was to ratifie it, thus;
Before their Idoll God, they slew a Sow,
And sayd aloud; So be it unto us.
Implying, that, if otherwise they did
Then had been vow'd; or, if within their Brest
A Fraudulent-Intention had beene hid,
They merited such Vsage, as that Beast.
You can read about the Roman ritual involving the pig and the flintstone at Wikipedia.

Si Sciens Fallo
Si te fallo sciens, feriat me Iupiter ultor,
Dicebat pangens foedera Roma vetus.

A sudden Death, with Shame, is due
To him, that, sweares What is untrue.

Here is the vocabulary:

si - if
scio - know
fallo - deceive, cheat
tu - you
ferio - strike, hit, kill
ego - I, me
Iupiter - Jupiter
ultor - avenger
dico - say, speak
pango - compose, fix, settle
foedus - treaty
Roma - Rome
vetus - old

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