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Alciato's Book of Emblems

Emblem 17

Where did I go astray, what did I do? or what duty was left undone?

The Samian, most famous founder of the Italian sect, himself wrapped up his own teaching in a brief verse: "Where have you gone astray? what do you do? and what are you not doing, that you ought to do?" He pressed every man to render this account with himself. It is said he learned this from a flock of flying cranes, who bore in their talons a stone they'd seized in order not to yield, lest ill winds bore them off course. By this rule, the life of men ought to be governed.