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Fell at full length and in the dust of Teucrum
Laid his proud neck low.
Never would he, pent in the horse pretending
Honour to Pallas, have surprised the Trojans'
Revel ill-timed, and palace-hall of Priam,
Joyous with dancers.
Openly cruel (ah! ah me! the horror),
Babes to Achivan flames had he delivered
To be consumed, yea even babes in mothers'
Bowels still hidden :
Save that by prayers of thine and gentle Venus
Moved was the father of the gods to suffer
That with more kindly auspices Aeneas
Should a new town build.
Lyrist Apollo, ever young Agyieus,
Tuneful Thalia's teacher, who in Xanthus'
River thine hair lav'st, of the Latin muse's
Honour be guardian.
Phoebus to me gave inspiration, Phoebus,
Talent poetic and the name of poet.
Highest-born maidens, youths, ye too, by noble
Fathers begotten, Wards of the Delian goddess, who the fleeing Lynxes and nimble stags with bow arresteth, Mark ye my Lesbic measure and keep time with
That which my thumb beats; Duly Latona's son alternate hymning, Duly the waning Night-Illumer's cresset, Hers who our fruit-trees favours, and revolving
Months hurries headlong.
Procidit late, posuitque collum in
Ille non inclusus equo Minervác
Sacra mentito male feriatos
Troas et laetam Priami choreis
Sed palam captis gravis, (heu nefas ! heu!)
Nescios fari pueros Achivis
Ureret flammis, etiam latentem
Matris in alvo :
Ni tuis victus Venerisque gratae
Vocibus divom pater annuisset
Rebus Aeneae potiore ductos
Doctor argutae fidicen Thaliae,
Phoebe, qui Xantho lavis amne crines,
Dauniae defende decus Camenae,
Spiritum Phoebus mihi, Phoebus artem
Carminis nomenque dedit poëtae.
Virginum primae, puerique claris
Deliae tutela deae, fugaces
Lyncas et cervos cohibentis arcu,
Lesbium servate pedem meique
Rite Latonae puerum canentes,
Rite crescentem face Noctilucam,
Prosperam frugum, celeremque pronos
Wedded ere long, ‘I, ye will say, "expert in
Metres adapted by the poet Horace,
At the feast secular, an ode recited
Such as gods welcome.'
If the Torquatus of this ode was the same as he to whom the fifth
epistle of the first book was addressed, he was an eloquent advocate, busily engaged in making money, and therefore a very suitable subject for the admonition here offered.
THE snows have fled, and to the meads the grass
Returns, their leafy tresses to the trees :
Earth changes phase: decreasing rivers pass
Again within their wonted boundaries.
The elder Grace, with nymphs and sisters twain,
Naked, fears not the choral dance to lead.
To hope for things immortal, the year's wane,
And hours that hurry on bright day, forbid.
Spring's Zephyrs temper cold: closely on Spring
Treads Summer, she herself about 10 die
Soon as his fruits comes Autumn lavishing :
And sluggish Winter now again draws nigh.
Quickly revolving moons, indeed, repair
Each skiey lapse: but we, soon as we sink
To where Aeneas pious, Tullus, are
And Ancus rich, to dust and shadow shrink.
Who knows if the supernal gods will add
To this day's span of time to-morrow's share ?
All gifts of yours that your own self has had
Are so much saved from gripe of greedy heir.
Nupta jam dices: Ego dis amicum,
Seculo festas referente luces,
Reddidi carmen, docilis modorum
DIFFUGERE nives: redeunt jam gramina campis
Mutat terra vices; et decrescentia ripas
Gratia cum Nymphis geminisque sororibus audet
Ducere nuda choros.
Immortalia ne speres, monet annus, et almum:
Quae rapit hora diem.
Frigora mitescunt Zephyris; ver proterit aestas
Pomifer Auctumnus fruges effuderit; et mox
Bruma recurrit iners.
Damna tamen celeres reparant caelestia lunae :
Nos, ubi decidimus
Quo pius Aeneas, quo dives Tullus et Ancus,
Pulvis et umbra sumus.
Quis scit, an adjiciant hodiernae crastina summae
Tempora Di superi ?
Cuncta manus avidas fugient heredis, amico
Quae dederis animo.
When once you die, and Minos formally
Shall judgement have pronounced concerning you,
Not lineage, eloquence nor piety,
Torquatus, will your former self renew.
For neither Dian, from Hell's gloom, attains
To rescue continent Hippolytus,
Nor prevails Theseus the Lethean chains
To break of his beloved Pirithous.
Little more is known of Censorinus than may be inferred from this
address to him—that he was rich, of good repute, and fond of poetry. At stated times, as on the Calends of January and March, it was a custom with the Romans to make presents to their friends; and Horace referring to this custom sends verses to Censorinus as the most acceptable gist he could offer.
FREELY should goblets and fine ware of brass,
Dear Censorinus, to my comrades pass:
I would give tripods which rewarded brave
Greeks: nor should you the meanest presents have,
Provided I in works artistic, which
Parrhasius or Scopas wrought, were rich.
Adepts in stone or liquid colours, they
Would now a man and now a god pourtray.
But no such skill is mine—nor yours, I wis,
Or lack or craving for such luxuries.
In verses you delight, and verses I
an give, and prove the gift's validity. Not marbles, graved with public scroll, which breath And new existence render after death.