The paper will give an account of metaphorical processes in Otto van Veen’s Amoris Divini Emblemata (Antwerp 1615). It argues that, among other things, the shared contextual metaphors in picture and text are what makes the book a coherent whole. Embedding of a metaphor in an allegorical setting creates the possibility for communicating complex attitudes towards the metaphorical objects. Because of this, the density of meaning in the book may be larger than hitherto recognized.
The allegorical setting where Divine Love points out a metaphorical object to the soul mimics the communicative situation where the implied author uses emblem (or book) to address the reader. Thus, the metaphors do not just represent properties of love but also reflect the guidance to the soul that the book aspires to provide.