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This Satire is addressed to Telesinus, a poet. Juvenal laments the neglect of encouraging learning. That Cæsar only is the patron of the fine arts. As for the rest of the great and noble Romans, they guve no heed to the protection of pools, historians, lawyers, rheto
T spes, et ratio studiorum in Cæsare tantum : .
Line 1. The hope and reason, &c.] i. c. The single expectation of learned men, that they shall have a reward for their labours, and the only reason, therefore, for their employing themselves in liberal studies, are reposed in Cæsar only.-Domitian seems to be meant ; for though he was a monster of wickedness, yet Quintilian, Martial, and other learned men, tasted of his bounty. Quintilian says of him “ Quo nec præsentius aliquid, nec studiis magis propitium numen “ est." See l. 20, 1.
2. The mournful Muses.] Who may be supposed to lament the sad condition of their deserted and distressed votaries.
4. Bath at Gabii, &c.] To get a livelihood by. Gabii was a lit. tle city near Rome. Balneolum- a small bagnio.
common Ovens.] Public bakehouses, where people paid so much for baking their bread.
6. Criers.] Præcones—whose office at Rome was to proclaim pub. lic meetings, public sales, and the like-a very mean employment ; but the poor starving poets disregarded this circumstance--"any " thing rather than starve" and indeed, however meanly this occu. pation might be looked upon, it was very profitable. See sat. ii. 1. 157, note. ..
- Aganippe.] A spring in the solitary part of Boeotia, conse. crated to the nine Muses.
Hungry Clio.] One of the nine Muses--the patroness of heroiç
micians, grammarians, &c. These last were not only ill paid, but even forced to go to law, for the poor pittance which they had earned, by the fatigue and labour of teaching school.
Both the hope, and reason of studies, is in Cæsar only:
poetry : here, by meton. put for the starving poet, who is forced, by his poverty, to leave the regions of poetry, and would fain beg at great men's doors. Atrium signifies the court, or court-yard, before great men's houses, where these poor poets are supposed to stand, like other beggars, to ask alms
8. In the Pierian shade.] See sat. iv. l. 35, note.--q. d. If by passing your time, as it were, in the abodes of the Muses, no reward or recompense is likely to be obtained for all your poetical labours. Some read arca—but Pieria umbra seems best to carry on the humour of the metonymy in this and the preceding line. .
9. Love the name, &c.] Machæra seems to denote the name of some famous crier of the time, whose business it was to notify sales by auction, and, at the time of sale, to set a price on the goods, og which the bidders were to increase- hence such a sale was called Aucati tio. See Ainsw. Præco, No. 1.
qid. If you find yourself pennyless, and so likely to continue by the exercise of poetry, then, instead of thinking it below you to be called a crier, you may cordially embrace it, and be glad to get a livelihood by auctions, as Machæra does.
10. Intrusted.] So Holyday.-Commissus signifies any thing com. mitted to one's charge, or in trust. Comp. sat. ix. l. 93-96.
Goods' committed to sale by public auction, are intrusted to the auctioneer in a twofold respect-first, that he sell them at the best
Stantibus, ænophorum, tripodes, armaria, cistas,
price; and, secondly, that he faithfully account with the owner for the produce of the sales.
Cornmissa may also allude to the commission, or licence, of the magistrate, by which public sales in the forum were appointed.
Some understand commissa auctio in a metaphorical sensealluding to the contention among the bidders, who, like gladiators matched in fight-commissi, (see sat. i. 163, note,) oppose and engage against each other in their several biddings.
:11. To the standers by.ji. e. The people who attend the auction as buyers.
12. The Alcithoe-the Thebes, &C.] Some editions read Alcyonem Bacchi, &c. These were tragedies written by wretched poets, which Juvenal supposes to be sold, with other lumber, at an auction.
13. Than if you said, &c.] This, mean as it may appear, is still getting your bread honestly, and far better than hiring yourself out as a false witness, and forswearing yourself for a bribe, in open court.
14. The Asiatic knights.] This satirizes those of the Roman nobi. lity, who had favoured some of their Asiatic slaves so much, as to enrich them sufficiently to be admitted into the equestrian order, These people were, notwithstanding, false, and not to be tristed.
Minoris Asiæ populis nullam fidem esse adhibendam Cic. pro Flacco. 15. The Cappadocians.] Their country bordered on Armenia. They were like the Cretans, (Tit. i. 12.) Iyars and dishonest to a proverb; yet many of these found means to make their fortunes at Rome.
The knights of Bithynia. ] Bithynia was another eastern pro. vince, a country of Asia Minor, from whence many such people, as are above described, came, and were in high favour, and shared in ti. tles and honours.
16. The other Gaul, c.7 Gallo-Græcia, or Galatia, another coun. try of Asia Minor : from hence came slaves, who, like others, were exposed to sale with naked feet. Or it may rather signify, that these wretches (however afterwards highly honoured) were so poor, when they first came to Rome, that they had not so much as a shoe to their feet.
To the standers by, a pot, tripods, book-cases, chests,
The poet means, that getting honest bread, in however mean a way, was to be preferred to obtaining the greatest affluence, as these fellows did, by knavery.
16. Brings over.] Traducit signifies to bring, or convey, from one place to another. It is used to denote transplanting trees, or other plants, in gardens, &c. and is a very significant word here, to denote the transplaming, as it were, of these vile people from the east to Rome.
18. That joins, &c.] The perfection of heroic poetry, which seems here intended, is the uniting grand and lofty expression, eloquium Focale, with tuneful measures-modis canoris.
Vocalis signifies something loud-making a noise-therefore, when applied to poetry, lofty-high-sounding.–9. d. No writer, hereafter, who excels iņ uniting loftiness of style with harmony of verse, shall be driven, through want, into employments which are bea low the dignity of his pursuits as a poet. Comp. 1. 3-6. in
19. Bitten the laurel.] Laurum momordit.-It was a notion that, when young poets were initiated into the service of the Muses, it was a great help to their genius to chew a piece of laurel, in honour of Apollo. Some think that the expression is figurative, and means those who have tasted of glory and honour by their compositions ; but the first sense seemns to agree best with what follows.
20. Mind this.] Hoc agite-lit. do this is e, diligently apply yourselves to poetry.
Of tke emperor.] Ducis is here applied to the emperor, as the great patron and chief over the liberal arts.
21. Seeks matter for itself. ] Carefully endeavours to find out its own gratification by rewarding merit.
23. Therefore the parchment, &c.] They wrote on parchment, which sometimes was dyed of a saffron-colour ; sometimes it was white, and wrapped up in coloured parchment. : The tabellæ were the books themselves--i. e. the pages on which their manuscripts were written,
If, says the poet, you take the paing to write volumeş full, in
Impletur , lignorum aliquid posce ocyus, et quæ
hopes of finding any other than Cæsar to reward you, you had better prevent your disappointment, by burning them as fast as you can. Lignorum aliquid posce ocyúslose no time in procuring wood for the purpose. 25. Telesinus. The poet to whom this Satire is addressed.
The husband of Venus.] Vulcan, the fabled god of fire here put for the fire itself. He was the husband of Venus.
9. d. Put all your writings into the fire.
26. Or shut up, and bore, &c.] Lay by your books, and let the moths eat them.
27. Your watched battles.] Your writings upon battles, the de. scriptions of which have cost you many a watchful, sleepless night,
28. A small cell. 7 A wretched garret, as we say..
29. Worthy of ivy, &c.] That, after all the pains you have taken, you may have an image, i. e. a representation of your lean and starved person, with a little paltry ivy put round the head of it, in the temple of Apollo.''
30. There is no farther hope.] You can expect nothing better nothing beyond this.
32. As boys the bird of Juno.] As children admire, and are delighted with the beauty of a peacock, (see Ainsw. tit. Argus,) which is of no service to the bird ; so the patrons, which you think of get. ting, however rich and able to afford iť they may be, will' yet give jou nothing but compliments on your performances :mathese will do you no more service, than the children's admiration does the peacock.
32-33. Your age passes away.) You little think that, while you are employing yourself to no purpose, as to your present subsist. ence, or provision for the future, by spending your time in writing verses, your life is gliding away, and old age is stealing upon youyour youth, which is able to endure the toils and dangers of the sea, the fatigres of wars, or the labours' of husbandry, is decaying: