Poem, no date, Anonymous to the Reader (BP155)

From Theatrum Paracelsicum
Author: Anonymous
Recipient: Reader
Type: Poem
Date: no date
Pages: 2
Language: German
Quote as: https://www.theatrum-paracelsicum.com/index.php?curid=2080
Editor: Edited by Julian Paulus
Leonhard Thurneisser, ἐρμηνεία. Das ist ein Onomasticum, Interpretatio oder erklerunge, Berlin: Graues Kloster 1574, sig. F7v–F8r [BP155]
Translation: Raw translation see below
Abstract: The poem expresses the author's stance on the value of practical experience over theoretical learning. The author questions if anyone wonders why they write about unfamiliar matters that even learned people do not know, despite their extensive studies in various renowned universities. These scholars have spent much time and money on education, yet their extensive reading doesn't equate to understanding if they fail to grasp the essence of their learning. Notable figures like Plato and Aristotle didn't gain their wisdom solely from reading. Therefore, reading and traveling are of little use without hands-on practice. The author emphasizes that they know their craft through practice, as direct experience often reveals the truth where written words may deceive. Much like a handpost that points the way without traversing it, writings can guide towards many arts, but true understanding comes from hands-on practice. The author finishes by saying they are unaffected by envy, for they have achieved through their work what hundreds could not achieve through reading. (generated by Chat-GPT)
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[sig. F7v] Zum leser.

Ob jemand darab wunder hett.
Das ich frembd sachen bSchribn vnd rett.
Die Glerten Leuten vnbekandt/
Die doch lang zeitt gStudiret handt.
zPafy/ Bononia/ Prag/ Franckfurt/
Padua/ Pariß/ Orliens/ Oxenfurt.
Wittenberg/ Basel/ Mentz/ vnd Löfen.
Auch sunst bey Schulen/ vnd Fürsten höfen.
Viel geld vertzert/ lang zeit verschlissen/
Viel gReisd/ viel glesen/ die do wissen.
Aller sprachen art/ Ton/ Resonantz/
Lispen/ Pfeifen/ lang/ kurtz/ halb/ gantz.
Hoch/ nieder/ leiß/ starck/ langsam/ gschwind
Vnd was der dingen sunst mehr sind.
Die nitt eim jeden sind gemein/
Der merck/ daß wandren nitt allein.
Erfarung bringt/ doch diß macht weis/
Das man am wandren acht mit fleiß.
Wodurch man wandre/ was man sicht.
Also viel lesen nützet nicht.
Wann man nitt bHaltet/ was man hat
gLesen/ vnd aus was grund es gatt.
Obs warheit/ oder fablen sey/
Doch glert sein/ das steht wol darbey.
Dann Plato, Euax,[c1] Aristoteles
Hypocras, Diosorides.
Ptolemœus, Zeno vnd Atlas/
Handt nitt durch lesen glernet das.
Das sie handt bschriben vns zu gutt?
Drumb lesen/ wandren/ gar nichts thut.
Wo nit der handtgriff sWerck Probirt/
Darumb sag ich/ so wer fragen wirt.
Wohar ichs nim? der solt verstan/
Ob ichs gleich nit gStudiret han.
So weiß ichs doch/ wie sWerck anzeigt/
Handtgriff zeigt dProb/ dSchrifft offt betreigt.
[sig. F8r] Dann lesen vnd die Sprach verste.
Jst zuuergleichen/ vnd nitt me.
Dann der handt/ die am wegscheid statt
Die zeigt den weg/ den sie nit gatt.
Also viel Künsten zeigt die Schrifft.
Die der handtgriff durch dArbeit trifft/
Viel Künst sind gschriben/ wenig war
Handtgriff zeigt dProb/ Labor machts klar.
πανος bwert ding die gschriben sind/
Handtgriff all kunst/ durch arbeidt find.
Der handtgriff ist ein Jnstrument
durch das sGemüet sein bgird erstatt/
Wann handtgriff sWerck verrichtet hatt.
Der Jnfluß wirckt vnsichtig mit
Doch gSchicht der keins on handtgriff nit.
Derhalb was ich nit lesen kan.
Das greiff ich mit den henden an.
Vnd hab Gott lob mit ausgericht
Das hundert thundt mit lesen nicht/
Drumb mich Neidts schwetzen nichts[c2] anficht.



  1. Euax,] corrected from: Euax
  2. nichts] corrected from: nchits

English Raw Translation

Generated by ChatGPT on 12 April 2023. Attention: This translation is a machine translation by artificial intelligence. The translation has not been checked and should not be cited without additional human verification.

If someone wonders about it, that I write and speak of foreign matters, unknown to learned people who have studied for a long time in Pavia, Bologna, Prague, Frankfurt, Padua, Paris, Orleans, Oxford, Wittenberg, Basel, Mainz, and Leuven; also, at other schools and princely courts, much money spent, much time worn away, much traveled, much read; those who know all kinds of languages, tone, resonance, lisping, whistling, long, short, half, whole, high, low, soft, strong, slow, fast, and whatever else there is, not common to everyone.

Take note that wandering not only brings experience but also makes one wise, as one pays diligent attention to what one sees while wandering. Reading much is not beneficial if one does not retain what one has read and why it was written, whether it is truth or fable; being learned is important.

For Plato, Evax, Aristotle, Hippocrates, Dioscorides, Ptolemy, Zeno, and Atlas, did they not learn through reading alone what they have written for our benefit?

Therefore, reading and wandering do nothing if the hands-on approach does not try the work. That's why I say, if someone asks where I get it from, they should understand that even if I haven't studied it, I still know it, as the work shows: the hands-on approach reveals the truth, while the writing often deceives.

Reading and understanding language are similar and nothing more. For the hand that stands at the crossroads shows the way it does not take. Likewise, the writing shows many arts, which the hands-on approach meets through work. Many arts are written, few are true; hands-on reveals the truth, labor makes it clear; precious things are written, find all arts through hands-on work.

The hands-on approach is an instrument through which the mind is first satisfied when the hands-on work is done. The influence works invisibly, yet none of it happens without the hands-on approach. Therefore, what I cannot read, I grasp with my hands.

And praise God, I have accomplished what a hundred cannot do with reading. Therefore, envy's chatter does not affect me.