Friday, February 17, 2012

Rollenhagen 48: Mors Sceptra Ligonibus Aequat

Here is today's emblem and distich by Gabriel Rollenhagen, Book 1.48, with an English rendering by George Wither. In the emblem you can see the sceptre and the mattock presided over by the skull. In the background is the palace and the dead king lying in state, while there is a funeral procession bearing a man from the village into the cemetery.

Mors Sceptra Ligonibus Aequat
Pallida mors aequo pede sceptra ligonibus aequat,
Et regum ante aulas pulsat, et ante casam.

In Death, no Difference is made,
Betweene the Scepter, and the Spade.

Here is the vocabulary:

mors - death
sceptrum - scepter
ligo - mattock, hoe
aequo - make even, equal
pallidus - pale, yellow-green
pes - foot
et - and
rex - king
ante - before
aula - hall, court
pulso - knock, beat, strike
casa - cottage, shack