Sebastian Brant

(1457 – 10 May 1521 / Strasbourg)

Sebastian Brant
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Sebastian Brant (also Brandt) was an Alsatian humanist and satirist. He is best known for his satire Das Narrenschiff (The Ship of Fools).

Biography

He was born in Strasbourg. He studied at Basel, took the degree of doctor of law in 1489, and for some time held a professorship of jurisprudence there. Returning to Strasbourg, he was made syndic of the town, remaining there for the rest of his life.

In 1485 he married Elisabeth Bürgis from Basel, the daughter of a cutler. Elisabeth bore him seven children. Keen for his eldest son Onophrius to become a humanist, he taught him Latin in the cradle and enrolled him in university at the age of seven.

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Best Poem of Sebastian Brant

Of Too Much Spekynge Or Bablynge

He that his tunge can temper and refrayne
And asswage the foly of hasty langage
Shall kepe his mynde from trouble, sadnes and payne,
And fynde therby great ease and avauntage;
Where as a hasty speker falleth in great domage
Peryll and losse, in lyke wyse as the pye
Betrays hir byrdes by hir chatrynge and crye....

Is it not better for one his tunge to kepe
Where as he myght (perchaunce) with honestee,
Than wordes to speke whiche make hym after wepe
For great losse folowynge wo and adversyte?
A worde ones spokyn revoked can not be,
Therfore thy fynger lay ...

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