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Bull in Handstand

Jean Toutin, 1619

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Premium fine art paper: 100% cotton, acid-free, archival
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Museum quality Giclée print
Premium fine art paper, 100% cotton, acid-free, archival
1" border
Image Size: 9" x 11.6" – Total Size: 11" x 13.6"
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A bull or ox stands in a handstand on two grazing sheep. On his hind legs a beehive and a chicken nest. On a ribbon is written the Latin: “Sic vos non vobis / Si quid melius videris”, which could roughly translate as “'So you do not work for yourself, if you see something better”. It seems related to Virgil's response to another poet, Bathyllus, who had claimed credit for a pro-Caesar verse penned (and posted anonymously) by Virgil. The entire rejoinder reads: Hos ego versiculos feci, tulit alter honores; / Sic vos non vobis fertis aratra boves; / Sic vos non vobis mellificatis apes; / Sic vos non vobis vellera fertis oves; /Sic vos non vobis nidificatis aves — which tranlates as “That is, I wrote these lines; another has borne away the honor; / Thus do ye, oxen, for others bear the yoke; / Thus do ye, bees, for others make honey; / Thus do ye, sheep, wear fleece for others; / Thus do ye, birds, for others make nests“. (Source: Rijksmuseum)