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Alciato's Book of Emblems

Emblem 182

Eloquence is difficult

There was a story that Mercury gave this to the man from Ithaca as an antidote to the drugged wine of the Aeaean Circe. They call it moly: it is pulled up with difficulty by its black root, but its flower is purple and looks like milk. Brilliance of eloquence and fluency attract everyone: But such a great gift is the result of much effort.