Another in Melville's sequence of epigrams on the St Bartholomew's Day Massacres that form part of the Carmen Mosis (see d2_MelA_017). Melville is clearly drawing this episode from one of the French-Genevan propaganda tracts, but where is unclear. Briquemault's biographical entry in La France Protestante (see d2_MelA_019 for details) does not mention his brothers, nor does it have an entry on 'Baulatus' or associated French derivatives. Metre: elegiac couplets.
Baulatus cum duobus Bricmaldiis in eodem lecto contrucidatus (c.1573)
Baulatus cum duobus Bricmaldiis in eodem lecto contrucidatus
1Tene etiam, Baulate, necat furor impius atra 1
nocte, sopor mulcet dum tua membra thoro?
[p111] Et lecto consanguineos obtruncat eodem?
Tecum una fraters mors rapit una duos? 2
5Vernantem, ah, florem vix aevi in limine primo 3
siccine dira manus, siccine dura quies
et secet in tenebris, et funere mergat acerbo? 4
Vae tibi carnifici, fraus scelerata manu.
Vive puer, vive aeternum: una vivite, fratres.
10Quae fera mors nobis haec pia vita Deo.
Baulatus, cut down in the same bed with the two brothers of Briquemault
Baulatus, does impious rage slay you in the black night, while slumber caresses your limbs in bed? [p111] And cuts to pieces your brothers in the same bed? Together with you, does one death seize two brothers? Ah, can it be that such a dread hand, such an unkind rest, cuts off in shadows in this way a flourishing flower scarcely on the first threshold of its age, and plunges it into a bitter death? Woe to you butcher, a your crime has defiled your hand. Live, boy, live forever: live, brothers, together. The death which is savage to us is a life pious to God.
1: cf. Virgil, Aeneid I.219
2: '...miseros mors rapit una homines': from the so-called Carmen Ad Uxorem, l.26, which is often attributed to either Paulinus of Nola or Prosper.
3: This line ending occurs three times in Virgil: Aeneid II.485; VI.427; XI.423. However VI.427-9 provides Melville with the chief inspiration for this and the next two lines.
4: See note two lines above. Virgil, Aeneid VI.429
a: Charles IX.