The Watermill: Pump Out

Book Title: De bykorf des gemoeds : honing zaamelende uit allerly bloemen / vervattende over de honderd konstige figuuren ; met godlyke spreuken en stichtelyke verzen, door Jan Luiken

Author: Luiken, Jan, 1649-1712

Image Title: The Watermill: Pump Out

Scripture Reference:

Description: A watermill stands on the dike of a lake. On the field in the foreground a man regards the mill and a sheep grazes; a church is located in the distance. The Dutch artist and poet Jan Luiken (1649-1712), whose initials are at the lower right, was responsible for drawing and etching this emblem, as well as for the poem that accompanies it (below). The attendant Scripture text is Psalm 69:15 [Psalm 69:16].

Through the Spiritual life,
All evil is expelled.

So that the fields remain above,
Where the Cow and the Sheep graze,
The heavy Mill-wheel has been built,
To drive out the sinking water:
Be gone water of all vanity,
That relentlessly slides downwards;
The Wheel, of the excellent mind,
(So that the field, of the pious heart,
Bears and feeds the pure cattle)
Pushes thee outside from inside.
Green field of a virtuous heart,
That is surrounded by the flood,
That great world-flood of sins;
Thy fat ground and noble nature,
Those are indeed worthy of the Mill-wheel,
So that thou would never sink.
As then, after effort and diligence,
A time will finally come,
That thou, (raised from thy ground)
Shall lie higher, than that,
Against which thou has constantly fought,
And which thou must continually fight against,
For when everything will have perished,
Thy bloom will remain eternally,
And the Heart, earlier tired from fighting,
Shall eternally graze in thy field.

(Translation by Josephine V. Brown, with editorial assistance from William G. Stryker)

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