Bern Riddle 19: De cera/De pice


Date: Fri 27 Nov 2020
Matching Commentaries: Commentary for Bern Riddle 19: De cera/De pice
Original text:
Dissimilem sibi me mater concipit infra
Et nullo virili creta de semine fundor.
Dum nascor sponte, gladio divellor a ventre.
Caesa vivit mater, ego nam flammis aduror.
Nullum clara manens possum concedere quaestum;
Plurem fero lucrum, nigro si corpore mutor.
My mother—I am unlike her—conceives me within,
and I am born and made from no manly seed.
While I am born willingly, I am ripped from the womb with a sword.
Cut, my mother lives on, for I am burnt by flames.
Retaining my shine, I can give no profit;
I carry more value if my body is turned dark.
Click to show riddle solution?
Wax or pitch


This edition is based on Karl Strecker, ed., Poetae Latini aevi Carolini, Vol. 4.2 (Berlin, MGH/Weidmann, 1923), page 744.

A list of variant readings can be found in Fr. Glorie, ed., Variae collectiones aenigmatum Merovingicae aetatis, Corpus Christianorum, Series Latina 133A (Turnhout: Brepols, 1968), page 565.

Tags: latin  Bern Riddles