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Commentary on Emblem 103Prometheus is now being punished for having made man and for having brought him fire, stolen from the gods on Olympus. He has been placed in the Caucasus mountains by Jupiter, and there the eagle, the "sacred bird" of Jupiter, comes every day to devour his liver, which, every night, grows back. He "detests potters" because he, like a potter, moulded (fingo) man before he brought him fire. The warning is not to attempt things beyond ourselves; Prometheus is the traditional figure of the seeker after knowledge whose excessive desire to know brings ruin upon himself and others.
There is a French translation of this emblem by Lefevre, conventionally numbered 28 in the unpaged edition of Paris: Wechel, 1536 at the Glasgow University emblem site. You may compare the Latin and French in frames.
Last modified 25 November 1997