Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Ne Tenear

Here is today's emblem and distich by Gabriel Rollenhagen, Book 1.4, with an English rendering by George Wither. The emblem and the distich are based on a statue of Kairos (the "Critical Moment") by the classical Greek sculptor Lysippos; the statue has not survived, but it is immortalized in one of the fables of Phaedrus and you can read a detailed description of the statue in Posidippus.

Ne Tenear

Ne tenear, postica cavet pars, vertice raso;
Caesariem qui scit prendere fronte, sapit.

Occasions-past are sought in vaine;
But, oft, they wheele-about againe.

Here is the vocabulary:

ne - not, so that not, lest
teneo - hold
posticus - back, rear
caveo - take care, avoid
pars - part
vertex - top, crown of the head
rado - shave
caesaries - head of hair, hair
qui - who, which, that
scio - know, know how to
prendo - grab, seize, catch
frons - forehead, front
sapio - be wise