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Disce: nec invideas, quod multa fidelia putet
Think that existence has an endless reign, Yourself a link in the eternal chain. Weigh these things well, and envy not the stores, Which clients bring from Umbria's fruitful shores ; Forego, without regret, the noisy bar, Its din, its wrangling, its unceasing war; Forsake that place where justice has a price, And suits are gain'd for fish, or ham, or spice. But here, perhaps, some blustering son of Mars, Will treat my doctrine as an idle farce. “ What,” doth he cry,“ do I not know enough, " That I must listen to this learned stuff? “ I do not wish to be esteem'd a sage, “ Nor to be held the Solon of my age. “ I hate the dull philosopher who sits, “ Pores o'er his book, and talks and thinks by fits; “Whose crazy head with metaphysics teems, “Who deeply ruminates on sick men's dreams, “Who holds, that nothing is from nothing brought; “ And then again, that nought returns to nought. " And is it this which racks that head of thinc? “ Is it for this, that thou hast fail'd to dine? Now roars the laugh, and now the noisy crowd Of listening fools, delighted, shouts aloud.
Some one there was, who finding strength to fail, His body meagre, and his visage pale, For the physician sent, and told his case, And show'd health's roses faded on his face. Three days' repose the fever's force restrains, And cools the current boiling in his veins.
De majore domo modicè sitiente lagena
Once more desirous for the world to live, And taste of all the joys which it can give; He quits his bed, prepares to bathe, and dine, And quaff the juice of the Surrentin vine. “ How wan, how sallow!” the physician cries; “Ah, but 'tis nothing now," the sick replies: “ Nothing, my friend; the dire prognosis shows, “ Disease productive of a thousand woes. “Nay, pr’ythee, peace-I do not ask thine aid; “My guardian in his grave long since was laid." The doctor goes—the sick man's body swells, And water gathers in a thousand cells: His breath, sulphureous, taints the vernal gale, And airs mephitic from his lungs exhale; At length unlook'd for death the wretch appals, And from his hand the lifted goblet falls. The trumpets sound, funereal torches glow, Announcing far the mockery of woe. On the state bed, the stiffen'd corse is laid, And all the honours due to death are paid; O’er the sad relics new made Romans mourn, And place the ashes in the silent urn. “Thy well told tale does not to me apply, “No fever rages, and no pulse beats high. " Lay thine hand here; my heart no throbbing knows, “And health for me uninterrupted flows." Methinks thou mayst a few exceptions make. Did loss of gold ne'er cause thine heart to ake? Does not a fever rage whene'er, by chance, A fond maid's soul is pictured in her glance?
Durum olus, et populi cribro decussa farina.