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condemned, their very names are hateful, and all their glory ends in obloquy.

In that Diomedes is said to be murdered by his host, it gives us to understand that the dif ference of religion breeds deceit and treachery, even among nearest acquaintance.

Now in that lamentation and mourning was not tolerated but punished; it puts us in mind, that let there be never so nefarious an act done, yet there is some place left for commiseration and pity, that even those that hate offences should yet in humanity commiserate offenders and pity their distress, it being the extremity of evil when mercy is not suffered to have commerce with misery. Yea, even in the cause as well of religion as impiety, many men may be noted and observed to have been compassionate. But on the contrary the complaints and moans of Diomedes' followers, that is, of men of the same sect and opinion, are wont to be shrill and loud, like swans, or the birds of Diomedes. In whom also that part of the allegory is excellent, to sig nify, that the last words of those that suffer death for religion, like the songs of dying swans, do wonderfully work upon the minds of men, and strike and remain a long time in their senses and memories.

DÆDALUS, OR MECHANIC.

that he had entertained a wicked guest into his family, and a man odious to the goddess, and an impunger of their divinity, that had dared, with his sword, to assault and wound that goddess, who, in their religion, they held it sacrilege so much as to touch. Therefore, that he might expiate his country's guilt, nothing respecting the duties of hospitality, when the bonds of religion tied him with a more reverend regard, suddenly slew Diomedes, commanding withal that his trophies and statues should be abolished and destroyed. Neither was it safe to lament this miserable destiny; but even his companions in arms, whilst they mourned at the funeral of their captain, and filled all the places with plaints and lamentations, were suddenly metamorphosed into birds like unto swans, who when their death approacheth, sing melodious and mournful hymns. This fable hath a most rare and singular subject: for in any of the poetical records, wherein the heroes are mentioned, we find not that any one of them, besides Diomedes, did ever with his sword offer violence to any of the deities. And indeed, the fable seems in him to represent the nature and fortune of man, who of himself doth propound and make this as the end of all his actions, to worship some divine power, or to follow some sect of religion, though never so vain and superstitious, and with force and arms to defend the same: for although those bloody quarrels for religion were unknown to the ancients, MECHANICAL wisdom and industry, and in it the heathen gods not having so much as a touch unlawful science perverted to wrong ends, is of that jealousy, which is an attribute of the true shadowed by the ancients under the person of God, yet the wisdom of the ancient times seems Dædalus, a man ingenious, but execrable. This to be so copious and full, as that, what was not Dædalus, for murdering his fellow servant that known by experience, was yet comprehended by emulated him, being banished, was kindly entermeditations and fictions. They then that en- tained, during his exile, in many cities and prin deavour to reform and convince any sect of ces' courts: for indeed he was the raiser and religion, though vain, corrupt, and infamous, builder of many goodly structures, as well in shadowed by the person of Venus, not by the honour of the gods, as the beauty and magnifi force of argument and doctrine, and holiness of cence of cities, and other public places, but for life, and by the weight of examples and authority, his works of mischief he is most notorious. It but labour to extirpate and root it out by fire and is he that framed the engine which Pasiphaë used sword, and tortures, are encouraged, it may be, to satisfy her lust in company with a bull, so that thereunto by Pallas, that is by the acrity of pru- by his wretched industry and pernicious device, dence, and severity of judgment, by whose vigour that monster Minotaur, the destruction of so many and efficacy, they see into the falsity and vanity hopeful youths, took his accursed and infamous of these errors. And by this their hatred of beginning; and studying to cover and increase pravity, and good zeal to religion, they purchase one mischief with another, for the security and to themselves great glory, and by the vulgar, to preservation of this monster he invented and built whom nothing moderate can be grateful, are es- a labyrinth, a work for intent and use most nefateemed and honoured as the only supporters of rious and wicked, for skill and workmanship. truth and religion, when others seem to be luke-famous and excellent. Afterwards, that he might warm and full of fear. Yet this glory and hap-not be noted only for works of mischief, but be piness doth seldom endure to the end, seeing sought after as well for remedies, as for instru every violent prosperity, if it prevent not altera-ments of destruction, he was the author of that tion by an untimely death, grows to be unpros- ingenious device concerning the clue of thread, perous at last for if it happen that by a change of government this banished and depressed sect get strength, and so bear up again, then these zealous men, so fierce in opposition before, are

by which the labyrinth was made passable with out any let. This Daedalus was persecuted by Minos with great severity, diligence, and inquiry, but he always found the means to avoid and

escape his tyranny. Lastly, he taught his son Icarus to fly, but the novice, in ostentation of this art, soaring too high, fell into the sea, and was drowned.

that will always abide in our city, though always forbidden. And yet notwithstanding unlawful and curious arts of what kind soever, in tract of time, when they cannot perform what they promise, do fall from the good opinion that was held of them, no otherwise than Icarus fell down from the skies, they grow to be contemned and scorned, and so perish by too much ostentation. And to say the truth, they are not so happily restrained by the reins of law as bewrayed by their own

ERICTHONIUS, OR IMPOSTURE.

The parable seems to be thus: in the beginning of it may be noted that kind of envy or emulation that lodgeth, and wonderfully sways and domineers amongst excellent artificers, there being no kind of people more reciprocally tormented with bitter and deadly hatred than they. The banishment also of Daedalus, a punish- | vanity. ment inflicted on him against the rules of policy and providence, is worth the noting: for artificers have this prerogative to find entertainment and welcome in all countries, so that exile to an ex- THE poets fable that Vulcan solicited Minerva cellent workman can hardly be termed a punish- for her virginity, and impatient of denial, with an ment, whereas other conditions, and states of life | inflamed desire, offered her violence, but in strugcan scarce live out of their own country. The admiration of artificers is propagated and increased in foreign and strange nations, seeing it is a natural and inbred disposition of men to value their own countrymen, in respect of mechanical works, less than strangers.

Concerning the use of mechanical arts, that which follows is plain. The life of man is much beholden to them, seeing many things, conducing to the ornament of religion, to the grace of civil discipline, and to the beautifying of all human kind, extracted out of their treasuries : and yet notwithstanding, from the same magazine or storehouse are produced instruments both of lust and death; for to omit the wiles of bands, we well know how far exquisite poisons, warlike engines, and such like mischiefs, the effects of mechanical inventions, do exceed the Minotaur himself in malignity and savage cruelty.

Moreover that of the labyrinth is an excellent allegory, whereby is shadowed the nature of mechanical sciences, for all such handicraft works as are more ingenious and accurate may be compared to a labyrinth, in respect of subtilty and divers intricate passages, and in other plain resem blances, which by the eye of judgment can hardly be guided and discerned, but only by the line of experience.

Neither is it impertinently added, that he which invented the intricate nooks of the labyrinth, did also show the commodity of the clue: for mechanical arts are of ambiguous use, serving as well for hurt as for remedy, and they have in a manner power both to loose and bind themselves. Unlawful trades, and so by consequence arts themselves, are often persecuted by Minos, that is by laws, which do condemn them, and prohibit men to use them. Nevertheless they are hid and retained everywhere, finding lurking holes and places of receipt, which was wellobserved by Tacitus of the mathematicians and figure-flingers of his time, in a thing not so much unlike; "Genus hominum quod in civitate nostra semper et retinebitur et vetabitur." There is a kind of men

gling his seed fell upon the ground, whereof came Ericthonius, whose body from the middle upward was of a comely and apt proportion, but his thighs and legs like the tail of an eel, small and deformed. To which monstrosity, he being conscious, became the first inventor of the use of chariots, whereby that part of his body which was well proportioned might be seen, and the other which was ugly and uncomely might be hid.

This strange and prodigious fiction may seem to show that art, which, for the great use it hath of fire, is shadowed by Vulcan, although it labour by much striving with corporeal substances to force nature, and to make her subject to it, she being for her industrious works rightly represented by Minerva, yet seldom or never attains the end it aims at, but with much ado and great pains, wrestling as it were with her, comes short of its purpose, and produceth certain imperfect births, and lame works, fair to the eye but weak and defective in use, which many impostors, with much subtilty and deceit, set to view, and carry about, as it were in triumph, as may for the most part be noted in chemical productions, and other mechanical subtilties and novelties, especially when, rather prosecuting their intent than reclining their errors, they rather strive to overcome nature by force; than sue for her embracements by due obsequiousness and observance.

DEUCALION, OR RESTITUTION,

THE poets say that the people of the old world being destroyed by a general deluge, Deucalion and Pyrrha were only left alive; who praying with fervent and zealous devotion, that they might know by what means to repair mankind, had answer from an oracle that they should obtain what they desired, if taking the bones of their mother they cast them behind their backs; which at first struck them with great amazement and despair, seeing, all things being defaced by the flood, it would be an endless work to find their mother's sepulchre, but at length they understood that by

bones, the stones of the earth, seeing the earth was the mother of all things, were signified by the oracle.

This fable seems to reveal a secret of nature, and to correct an error familiar to men's conceits;

That day, by Greekish force, was Ripheus slain, So just and strict observer of the law, As Troy, within ber walls, did not contain A better man: Yet God then good it saw. She is described with wings, because the changes of things are so sudden, as that they are seen, before foreseen; for in the records of all ages, we find it for the most part true, that great potentates and wise men have perished by those be observed in Marcus Cicero, who being admomisfortunes which they most contemned; as may

for through want of knowledge men think that things may take renovation and restoration from their putrefaction and dregs, no otherwise than the phoenix from the ashes, which in no case can be admitted, seeing such kind of materials, when they have fulfilled their periods, are unapt for the be-nished by Decius Brutus of Octavius Cæsar's hyginnings of such things: we must therefore look back to more common principles.

NEMESIS, OR THE VICISSITUDE
OF THINGS.

NEMESIS is said to be a goddess venerable unto all, but to be feared of none but potentates and Fortune's favourites. She is thought to be the daughter of Oceanus and Nox. She is portrayed with wings on her shoulders, and on her head a coronet, bearing in her right hand a javelin of ash, and in her left a pitcher, with the similitudes of Ethiopians engraven on it: and lastly, she is described sitting on a hart.

pocritical friendship and hollow-heartedness towards him, returns this answer, "Te autem, mi Brute, sicut debeo, amo, quod istud quicquid est nugarum me scire voluisti." I must ever acknow ledge myself, dear Brutus, beholden to thee, in love, for that thou hast been so careful to acquaint me with that which I esteem as a needless trifle to be doubted.

Nemesis is also adorned with a coronet, to show the envious and malignant disposition of the vulgar, for when fortune's favourites and great poten tates come to ruin, then do the common people rejoice, setting, as it were, a crown upon the head of

revenge.

whom she actually strikes and pierceth thorough. The javelin in her right hand points at those

The parable may be thus unfolded. Her name Nemesis, doth plainly signify revenge or retribuAnd before those whom she destroys not in tion, her office and administration being, like a their calamity and misfortune, she ever presents tribune of the people, to hinder the constant and that black and dismal spectacle in her left hand; perpetual felicity of happy men, and to interpose for questionless to men sitting as it were upon her word, "veto," I forbid the continuance of it; the pinnacle of prosperity, the thoughts of death, that is not only to chastise insolency, but to inter- and painfulness of sickness and misfortunes, mix prosperity, though harmless, and in a mean, perfidiousness of friends, treachery of foes, with the vicissitudes of adversity, as if it were a change of estate, and such like, seem as ugly to custom, that no mortal man should be admitted to the eye of their meditations as those Ethiopians the table of the gods but for sport. Truly when I read that chapter, wherein Caius Plinius hath col-ing the battle of Actium, speaks thus elegantly pictured in Nemesis's pitcher. Virgil, in describ lected his misfortunes and miseries of Augustus of Cleopatra. Cæsar, whom of all men I thought the most happy, who had also a kind of art to use and enjoy his fortune, and in whose mind might be noted neither pride, nor lightness, nor niceness, nor disorder, nor melancholy, as that he had appointed a time to die of his own accord, I then deemed this goddess to be great and powerful, to whose altar so worthy a sacrifice as this was

drawn.

"Regina in mediis patrio vocat agmina sistro
Nec dum etiam geminos à tergo respicit angues."
The queen amidst this hurly-burly stands,
And with her country timbrel calls her bands;
Not spying yet, where crawled behind her back,
Two deadly snakes with venom speckled black.

But not long after, which way soever she turned, troops of Ethiopians were still before her

eyes.

The parents of this goddess were Oceanus and Lastly, it is wisely added that Nemesis rides Nox, that is, the vicissitude of things, and divine upon a hart, because a hart is a most lively crea judgment obscure and secret: for the alteration of ture. And albeit, it may be, that such as are cut things are aptly represented by the sea, in respect off by death in their youth prevent and shun the of the continual ebbing and flowing of it, and hidden providence is well set forth by the night: for prosperity and power continue long, are made subpower of Nemesis; yet doubtless such, whose even the nocturnal Nemesis, seeing human judg-ject unto her, and lie, as it were, trodden under her ment differs much from divine, was seriously observed by the heathen.

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feet.

ACHELOUS, OR BATTLE.

It is a fable of antiquity, that when Hercules and Achelous as rivals contended for the marriage

of Dejanira, the matter drew them to combat, was called Dionysus. Being born, was comwherein Achelous took upon him many divers mitted to Proserpina for some years to be nursed, shapes, for so was it in his power to do, and and being grown up, it had such a maiden-face as amongst others, transforming himself into the that a man could hardly judge whether it were a likeness of a furious wild bull, assaults Hercules boy or girl. He was dead also, and buried for a and provokes him to fight. But Hercules, for all time, but afterwards revived: being but a youth, this, sticking to his old human form, courageously he invented and taught the planting and dressing encounters him, and so the combat goes roundly of vines, the making also and use of wine; for on. But this was the event, that Hercules tore which, becoming famous and renowned, he subaway one of the bull's horns, wherewith he being jugated the world even to the uttermost bounds mightily daunted and grieved, to ransom his horn of India. He rode in a chariot drawn by tigers. again was contented to give Hercules, in exchange There danced about him certain deformed hobthereof, the Amalthean horn, or cornucopia. goblins called Cobali, Acratus, and others, yea, even the muses also were some of his followers. He took to wife Ariadne, forsaken and left by Theseus. The tree sacred unto him was the ivy. He was held the inventor and institutor of sacrifices and ceremonies, and full of corruption and cruelty. He had power to strike men with fury or madness; for it is reported, that at the celebration of his orgies, two famous worthies, Pen

tain frantic women, the one because he got upon a tree to behold their ceremonies in these sacrifices, the other for making melody with his harp; and for his gods, they are in a manner the same with Jupiter's.

This fable hath relation unto the expeditions of war, for the preparations thereof on the defensive part, which, expressed in the person of Achelous, are very diverse and uncertain. But the invading party is most commonly of one sort, and that very single, consisting of an army by land, or perhaps of a navy by sea. But for a king that in his own territory expects an enemy, his occasions are infinite. He fortifies towns, he as-theus and Orpheus, were torn in pieces by cersembles men out of the countries and villages, he raiseth citadels, he builds and breaks down bridges, he disposeth garrisons, and placeth troops of soldiers on passage of rivers; on ports, on mountains, and ambushes in woods, and is busied with a multitude of other directions, insomuch that every day he prescribeth new forms and orders; and then at last having accommodated all things complete for defence, he then rightly represents the form and manner of a fierce fighting bull. On the other side, the invader's greatest care is, the fear to be distressed for victuals in an enemy's country; and therefore affects chiefly to hasten on battle: for if it should happen, that after a field fight, he prove the victor, and as it were break the horn of the enemy, then certainly this follows, that his enemy being stricken with terror, and abased in his reputation, presently bewrays his weakness, and seeking to repair his loss, retires himself to some stronghold, abandoning to the conqueror the spoil and sack of his country and cities; which may well be termed a type of the Amalthean horn.

DIONYSUS, OR PASSIONS.

THEY say that Semele, Jupiter's sweetheart, having bound her paramour by an irrevocable oath to grant her one request which she would require, desired that he would accompany her in the same form wherein he accompanied Juno: which he granting, as not able to deny, it came to pass that the miserable wench was burnt with lightning. But the infant which she bare in her womb, Jupiter the father took out, and kept it in a gash which he cut in his thigh till the months were complete that it should be born. This burden made Jupiter somewhat to limp, whereupon the child, because it was heavy and troublesome to its father while it lay in his thigh,

There is such excellent morality couched in this fable, as that moral philosophy affords not better; for under the person of Bacchus is described the nature of affection, passion, or perturbation, the mother of which, though never so hurtful, is nothing else but the object of apparent good in the eyes of appetite and it is always conceived in an unlawful desire, rashly propounded and obtained, before well understood and considered; and when it begins to grow, the mother of it, which is the desire of apparent good by too much fervency, is destroyed and perisheth: nevertheless, whilst yet it is an imperfect embryo, it is nourished and preserved in the human soul, which is as it were a father unto it, and represented by Jupiter; but especially in the inferior part thereof, as in a thigh, where also it causeth so much trouble and vexation, as that good determinations and actions are much hindered and lamed thereby and when it comes to be confirmed by consent and habit, and breaks out as it were into act, it remains yet a while with Proserpina as with a nurse; that is, it seeks corners and secret places, and as it were, caves under ground, until the reins of shame and fear being laid aside in a pampered audaciousness, it either takes the pretext of some virtue, or becomes altogether impudent and shameless. And it is most true, that every vehement passion is of a doubtful sex, as being masculine in the first motion, but feminine in prosecution.

:

It is an excellent fiction that of Bacchus's reviving; for passions do sometimes seem to be in a dead sleep, and as it were, utterly extinct; but

we should not think them to be so indeed; no, though they lay as it were in their grave: for let there be but matter and opportunity offered, and you shall see them quickly to revive again.

every giddy-headed humour keeps in a manner revel-rout in false religions; or that the cause of madness should be ascribed unto him, seeing every affection is by nature a short fury, which, if it grow vehement and become habitual, concludes mad

The invention of wine is wittily ascribed unto him; every affection being ingenious and skilfulness. in finding out that which brings nourishment unto it; and indeed, of all things known to men, wine is most powerful and efficacious to excite and kindle passions of what kind soever, as being in a manner common nurse to them all.

Again, his conquering of nations and undertaking infinite expeditions is an elegant device; for desire never rests content with what it hath, but with an infinite and unsatiable appetite still covets and gapes after more.

His chariot also is well said to be drawn by tigers; for as soon as any affection shall, from going afoot, be advanced to ride in a chariot, and shall captivate reason, and lead her in a triumph, it grows cruel, untamed, and fierce against whatsoever withstands or opposeth it.

It is worth the noting also, that those ridiculous hobgoblins are brought in dancing about his chariot; for every passion doth cause, in the eyes, face, and gesture, certain indecent and ill-seeming, apish and deformed motions; so that they who in any kind of passion, as in anger, arrogancy, or love seem glorious and brave in their own eyes, do yet appear to others misshapen and ridiculous. In that the muses are said to be of his company, it shows that there is no affection almost, which is not soothed by some art wherein the indulgence of wits doth derogate from the glory of the muses, who, when they ought to be the mistresses of life, are made the waiting-maids of affections.

Again, when Bacchus is said to have loved Ariadne that was rejected by Theseus; it is an allegory of special observation; for it is most certain, that passions always covet and desire that which experience forsakes; and they all know, who have paid dear for serving and obeying their lusts, that whether it be honour, or riches, or delight, or glory, or knowledge, or any thing else which they seek after, yet are they but things cast off, and by divers men in all ages, after experience had, utterly rejected and loathed.

Neither is it without a mystery, that the ivy was sacred to Bacchus; for the application holds first, in that the ivy remains green in winter; secondly, in that it sticks to, embraceth, and overtoppeth so many divers bodies, as trees, walls, and edifices. Touching the first, every passion doth by resistance and reluctation, and as it were by an antiperistasis, like the ivy of the cold winter, grow fresh and lusty: and as for the other, every predominate affection doth again, like the ivy, embrace and limit all human actions and determinations, adhering and cleaving fast unto them. Neither is it a wonder that superstitious rites and ceremonies were attributed unto Bacchus, seeing

Concerning the rending and dismembering of Pentheus and Orpheus, the parable is plain, for every prevalent affection is outrageous and severe, and against curious inquiry and wholesome and free admonition.

Lastly, that confusion of Jupiter and Bacchus's persons may be well transferred to a parable, seeing noble and famous acts, and remarkable and glorious merits do sometimes proceed from virtue and well ordered reason and magnanimity, and sometimes from a secret affection and hidden passion, which are so dignified with the celebrity of fame and glory, that a man can hardly distinguish between the acts of Bacchus and the gests of Jupiter.

ATALANTA, OR GAIN.

ATALANTA, who was reputed to excel in swiftness, would needs challenge Hippomenes at a match in running. The conditions of the prize were these: that if Hippomenes won the race, he should espouse Atalanta; if he were outrun, that then he should forfeit his life. And in the opinion of all, the victory was thought assured of Atalanta's side, being famous as she was for her matchless and inconquerable speed, whereby she had been the bane of many. Hippomenes therefore bethinks him how to deceive her by a trick, and in that regard provides three golden apples or balls, which he purposely carried about him. The race is begun, and Atalanta gets a good start before him. He seeing himself thus cast behind, being mindful of his device, throws one of his golden balls before her, and yet not outright, but somewhat of the one side, both to make her linger and also to draw her out of the right course: she out of a womanish desire, being thus enticed with the beauty of the golden apple, leaving her direct race, runs aside and stoops to catch the ball. Hippomenes the while holds on his course, getting thereby a great start, and leaves her behind him: but she, by her own natural swiftness, recovers her lost time and gets before him again. But Hippomenes still continues his sleight, and both the second and third times casts out his balls, those enticing delays; and so by craft, and not by his activity, wins the race and victory.

This fable seems allegorically to demonstrate a notable conflict betwen art and nature; for art, signified by Atalanta, in its work if it be not letted and hindered, is far more swift than nature, more speedy in pace, and sooner attains the end it aims at, which is manifest almost in every effect; as you may see in fruit trees, whereof those that grow of a kernel are long ere they bear, but such

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