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A Collection of Emblemes

Ancient and Moderne: Quickened VVith Metricall Illvstrations, both Morall and Divine: And disposed into Lotteries, That Instruction, and Good Counsell, may bee furthered by an Honest and Pleasant Recreation. By George Wither

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Illvstr. XLV.


Illvstr. XLV.

[It is by some supposed, that our Owles]

Hee that is blind, will nothing see,
What light soe're about him bee.

It is by some supposed, that our Owles,
By Day-time are, no perfect sighted Fowles;
And, that, the more you doe augment the light,
The more you shall deprive them of their sight.
Nor Candles, Torches, nor the Sunne at noone,
Nor Spectacles, nor all of these in one
Can make an Owlet in the day-time see,
Though none, by night, hath better eyes than shee.
This Emblem, therefore, sets their blindnesse forth,
Who cannot see, when an apparant worth
Illustrates vertuous Men; yet, seeme to spie
Those faults, wherewith ill-willers them belie.
The blindnesse, also, well it may declare,
Of Heretikes, who Eagle-sighted are,
In Sophistries, and in the cloudie-night,
Of those darke Errors, which delude the sight;
Yet, cannot see the Rayes of Truth divine,
Though, brighter than the Day light, shee doth shine.
It, likewise, very fitly typifies,
Those, in our dayes, who spie out mysteries,
Beyond the Moone; yet, cannot gaine the view
Of that, which common Reason proveth true:
And, therefore, onely, crie it (madly) downe,
Because, by Reasons light, it may be knowne.
These, when 'twas offred, first, the light refused;
And, they have now the darknesse which they chused.
Till, therefore, God shall offer Grace againe,
Man strives to set up Lights, to these, in vaine:
For, what are Lights to those, who blinded bee?
Or, who so blinde, as they that will not see?