Τρίτη, 27 Δεκεμβρίου 2011

Michael Maier - Atalanta fugiens (1 to 5)


Michael Maier - Atalanta fugiens


The Flying Atalanta

or

Philosophical Emblems

of the

Secrets of Nature

by

Michael Majerus

Count of the Imperial Consistory

M...D... Eq: ex: &c


The Author's Epigram

Three Golden Apples from the Hesperian grove.
A present Worthy of the Queen of Love.
Gave wise Hippomenes Eternal Fame.
And Atalanta's cruel Speed O'ercame.
In Vain he follows 'till with Radiant Light,   
One Rolling Apple captivates her Sight.   
And by its glittering charms retards her flight.  
She Soon Outruns him but fresh rays of Gold,
Her Longing Eyes & Slackened Footsteps Hold,
'Till with disdain She all his Art defies,
And Swifter then an Eastern Tempest flies.
Then his despair throws his last Hope away,
For she must Yield whom Love & Gold betray.
What is Hippomenes, true Wisdom knows.
And whence the Speed of Atalanta Flows.
She with Mercurial Swiftness is Endued,
Which Yields by Sulphur's prudent Strength pursued.
But when in Cybel's temple they would prove
The utmost joys of their Excessive Love,
The Matron Goddess thought herself disdained,
Her rites Unhallowed & her shrine profaned.
Then her Revenge makes Roughness o'er them rise,
And Hideous feireenesse Sparkle from their Eyes.
Still more Amazed to see themselves look red,
Whilst both to Lions changed Each Other dread.
He that can Cybell's Mystic change Explain,
And those two Lions with true Redness stain,
Commands that treasure plenteous Nature gives
And free from Pain in Wisdom's Splendor lives.


Emblem 1 

The wind carried him in its belly.  When the unborn child, which lies hidden in the womb of the North wind, One day will rise to the light, alive, He alone will be able to surpass all deeds of heroism With his art, his hand, bodily strength and spirit, Let him not be born for you like a Coeso, and not as a useless abortion, Not as an Agrippa, but under a lucky star.***


Emblem 2

His nurse is the earth.  Romulus is said to have been nursed at the coarse udders of a wolf, But Jupiter to have been nursed by a goat, and these facts are said to be believed: Should we then wonder if we assert That the earth suckles the tender Child of the Philosophers with its milk? If an insignificant animal nursed such great heroes, Shall he not be great, who has the Terrestrial Globe as a nurse.


Emblem 3

Go to the woman who washes the sheets and do as she does.  Let not he who loves scrutinizing secret dogmas Neglect to take as an example everything that can help him; Don’t you see how a woman is accustomed to cleaning dirty laundry by pouring hot water over it? Follow her example, so that you will not fail in your art, For the water washes the precipitation of the black body away.


Emblem 4

Join brother and sister, and hand them the cup with the love potion.  The human race would not be so numerous now in the world, If not, as first wife, the sister had been given to the brother, So join two descendants of one pair of parents with confidence, That they may live in marriage as husband and wife, Drink to each of them from the cup with the sweet love potion, And their love will raise the hope of fruit.


Emblem 5

Put a toad to the breasts of a woman, that she may feed it, And the woman may die, and the toad grows big from the milk.
Put a cold toad at the breast of a woman, So that it may drink from the source of milk like a child. Let it swell into a large growth, And let the woman become ill and die. Make a noble medicine from it, Which drives the poison out of the human heart and takes away destruction.

*** The text translation from the Latin is not mine. More Emblems soon :)

Michael Maier's alchemical emblem book Atalanta fugiens was first published in Latin in 1617. 
It was a most amazing book as it incorporated 50 emblems with epigrams and a discourse, but extended the concept of an emblem book by incorporating 50 pieces of music the 'fugues' or canons. 
In this sense it was an early example of multimedia.An English tanslation exists in the British Library MS. Sloane 3645

I have 'Michael Maier, Atalanta Fugiens (1618), Alchemy Music (50 pieces)' So if anyone want it he can email me here to upload it : soundzgreg@yahoo.co.uk

Or go and buy it here :
http://www.classicsonline.com/catalogue/product.aspx?pid=1182894
http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/album.jsp?album_id=572880
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