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Nobili, Clarissimoque Viro
D. Gerardo de Vilers,
Toparchæ in Vilers Perwin, &c.

In Academiâ Louaniensi per triginta
quinque annos Medicinæ Docto-
ri & Professori Primario.
A Serenissimo Bauariæ Duce, in Me-
dicum Cubicularium requisito.
A Serenissimis Archiducibus Austriæ
Alberto et Isabella,
Belgarum Principibus, ad-
scito, retento, &
Stipendijs honorarijs remunerato.
Magnatum Belgij Archiatro.
QVid faciam? tibi dedica-
bo? supra humilitatem opu-
sculi mei nobilitas tua est;
qui generosum ex antiquâ Vile-
riorvmapud Gallos familiâ, san-

guinem trahis: qui stemma tuum,
sub aduersæ fortunæ vmbrâ delites-
cens, propriâ virtute clarificasti: cuius
splendorem, Serenissima Belgarum
Princeps, Isabella, restauratione
suâ confirmauit: cuius extractionem,
inuidiæ morsibus impetitam, Phi-
lippvs QvartvsHispania-
rum & Indiarum Rex, diplomate
suo illustrem declarauit. Te in Mæ-
cenatem inúocabo? supra caliginem
styli mei claritas tua est; qui Loua-
niensem Uniuersitatem per triginta
quinque annos, admirandâ doctri-
nâ & primariâ lectione tuâ illustra-
sti: quique illam gubernatione, &
rectoratu tuo magnificè decorasti:
qui lucidissimos magnæ famæ tuæ
radios, in Hispaniam, Galliam, An-
gliam, Germaniam, Bauariam, Leo-

dium, exterasque Regiones, longè
latequeue diffudisti. Testatur Leodium,
cuius Magnates, quam frequenter,
summo cum honore, te aduocarunt.
Testatur Bauaria, cuius Serenissi-
mus Dux, te in cubicularium, am-
pló cum stipendio, requisiuit. Te-
stantur Gallia, Anglia, & Ger-
mania, quæ consilia tua expetierunt.
Testatur Hispania, quæ tam glorio-
sum de meritis tuis testimonium
nuper præbuit. Testatur Belgium, in
quo omnes ferè Principes, Comites,
& eminentioris dignitatis personæ,
(etiam in Prouincijs vnitis) te accer-
siuerunt & consuluerunt: in quo Se-
renissimus Archidux Austriæ, Al-
bertvs, te sibi adsciuit, retinuit
& stipendijs honorarijs remunera-
uit. Quid dicam? supra calamum

meum laus tua est; qui cum plura
dixero, parum aut nihil me dixisse,
condignè, arbitrabor. Silebo. tamen
ne muneris mei exigentiæ arguar, &
ne denuò secunda editio, sub nul-
lius tutelâ, errans & vagabunda, a-
lienum emendicet patrocinium, sub
tuum confugiens, supplex illam si-
sto. præbeat igitur accessum benig-
nitas tua; annuat desiderio meo be-
neuolentia tua; prodeat in lucem,
sub famoso nomine tuo libellus iste,
qui si tuo præsidio & authoritati in-
nixus fuerit, à calumniosis maleuo-
lorum & detractorum censuris im-
munis comparebit. Effectus Amoris
sunt; hos cum cordis affectu tibi
consecro. Tu illos cum Affectu &
Effectu tuo accipe; quos si per ocium
aliquando perlegas, dabit Deus vt

humano affectu expurgato, diuini
affectus sacratiores effectus in animâ
tuâ sentias. ita opto & voueo.translation


Nob. & Clariss. Dominat. tuæ.
Addictissimus & Humillimus
. M. Snyders.

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To our noble and most illustrious lord, Mr. Gérard De Villiers, mayor of Villers-Perwin1, doctor of medicine and distinguished professor at the University of Louvain, called in as court physician by the most honourable Duke of Bavaria, appointed, retained and paid as such by the most illustrious Archduke and Archduchess of Austria, Albert and Isabella, sovereigns of the Belgae. Head physician to the magnates of the southern Netherlands.
What must I do? Shall I dedicate this to you? Your nobility too exalted for my humble little work. You who draw your blood from the ancient French family De Villiers; you who with your own virtue have given new light to your pedigree when it was eclipsing under an adverse course of fate; you, whose splendour Isabella, the most illustrious sovereign of the Belgae, has confirmed by reinstating you; whose family history, attacked with the bites of envy, Philip IV, king of Spain and the Indies, declared illustrious by an official document. Shall I call you to be my Maecenas? Your shining qualities are too much for my obscure pen. You who with admirable learning and lectures of the highest quality gave lustre to the university of Louvain; you who have done it honour magnificently by your government and rectorate; you who have widely transmitted the rays of your great fame over Spain, France, England, Germany, Bavaria and Liège2, and more remote regions. Witness Liège: how often did not its magistrates call in your services and with it bestowed on you the highest honour? Witness Bavaria, the most illustrious Duke of which called you to his sickroom (this came with a considerable reward). Witness France, England and Germany, that asked your advice. Witness Spain that recently provided a glorious testimony about your merits. Witness the land of the Belgae, in which almost all princes, counts and other persons of more elevated rank (also in the United Provinces) invited and consulted you; in which Albert, most illustrious Archduke of Austria, called in your services, retained you and bestowed on you gifts to honour you. What shall I say? To praise you is beyond my pen. I who, when I have said quite a few things, will think that I have said too little or nothing at all that is commensurate with your dignity. I will be silent. However, lest I be accused of pressing for my reward, and lest again a second edition, being under nobody's protection and a vagabond goes begging for another's patronage, I take my refuge with you, and as a suppliant place it under yours. Let therefore your beneficence grant access, may your benevolence bow to my desire. May it see the light under your famous name, that little book of mine that, if it leans on your protection and authority will be published and stay immune against the criticisms of malevolent detractors.

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        Villers-Perwin, a place in Belgium; the Latin name 'Belgae' was used, most famously by Julius Caesar in his 'De bello Gallico', for the people of northern Gaul. As an independent nation Belgium only came into existence in 1831, after seceding from the Netherlands.
        Leodium (Liège, Luik) was a powerful bishopric at the time.