November 13, 2012

"Julius Scaliger" by Columbus "Lummie" Williams

Scaliger insignia on Sirmione Castle

In sleepless fits of the gout
I wrote two hundred verses in a night

but not for me to commend myself
or to be judged by a distich 

lest I make a botch of it 
as Dante and Petrarch did.

For fear my tomb might outlast my works
just five words I had incised

Julii Caesaris Scaligeri quod fuit:

Julius Scaliger that was.

(Julius Scaliger: Italian scholar and physician, 1484 – 1558)