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Even a father of his flock, lest they should play base tricks,
243. Which the people require.] When a fencer, or gladiator, came off victorious, the Roman people required the quinque aurei to be given to him by the prætor, tribune, or other person, who gave and presided at the show. This passage is, by some, referred to Mart. lib. x. epigr. 74. where he mentions one Scorpus, a famous charioteer, who, by being victor in a chariot-race, carried off, in one hour's time, fifteen sacks full of gold. But this does not seem to agree with what Juvenal says of the gains of the poor grammarian, which the poet evidently supposes to be no more than the perquisite of a common gladiator that had come off conqueror ; even this was five times as much as a lawyer got by a cause. Comp. I. 122.
Thus Juvenal concludes this Satire, having fully accomplished his purpose ; which was to shew, by many instances, the shameful neglect of learning and science, as well as of the professors of them, which then prevailed among the nobility of Rome.
END OF THE SEVENTH SATIRE.
In this Satire the Poet proves, that true nobility does not consist in sta.
tues and pedigrees, but in honourable and good actions. And, in opo
position to persons nobly born, who are a disgrace to their family, he STEMMATA quid faciụnt ? quid prodest, Pontice, longo Sanguine censeri, pictosque ostendere vultus Majorum, et stantes in curribus Æmilianas, Et Curios jam dimidios, humèroque minorem , Corvinum, et Galbam auriculus nasoque carentem ?: Quis fructus generis tabulâ jactare capaci Corvinum, et post hunc multâ deducere virgâ Fumosos equitum cum Dictatore Magistros, Si coram Lepidis male vivitur? effigies quo Tot bellatorum, si luditur alea pernox Ante Numantinos ? si dormire incipis ortų
Line 1. What do pedigrees?) i. e. Of what use or service are they merely considered in themselves?
- Ponticus.] There was a famous heroic poet of this name, much'acquainted with Propertius and Oyid : but the person here mentioned, to whom this Satire is addressed, was probably some man of quality, highly elevated by family pride, but whose manners disgraced his birth.
2. By a long descént.] Longo sanguine--a descent through a long train of ancestors of noble blood.
- Painted countenances, &c.] It was customary among the Romans to have their houses furnished with family-pictures, images, &c. and it was no small part of the pride of the nobility.
3—4-5. The Æmilii-Curii Corvinus.] 'Were noble Romans, the founders of illustrious families, and an honour to their country.
3. Standing in churiots.] Triumphal cars, as expressed in the tri. umphal statues."
4. Now half.] i e. Half. demolished by length of time.
4.-5. Less by a shoulder Corvinus.] His statue thus mutilated by time and accident.
5. Galba.] The statue of Sergius Galba, a man of consular dig. nity, and who founded an illustrious family, was also defaced and mu, tilated by time.
displays the worth of many who were meanly born, as Cicero, Mac rius, Serv. Tullius, and the Decii.
W HAT do pedigrees? what avails it, Ponticus, to be valued
6. What fruit.] is e. Of what real, solid use, can it be?
The capacious table.] viz. A large genealogical table. 7. By many a branch.] The genealogical tables were described in the form of trees : the first founder of the family was the root his immediate descendants the stem and all the collaterals from them were the branches. So among us.
8. Smoky masters of the knights.] Images of those who had been magistri equitum, masters or chiefs of the order of knights, now tarnished, and grown black, by the smoke of the city,
With a dictator.] An image of some of the family who had filled that office. He was chief magistrate among the Romans, vested with absolute power, and from whom lay no appeal. Twenty-four. axes were carried before him. He was never chosen but in some great danger or trouble of the state; and commonly at the end of six months was to resign his office.
9. If before the Lepidi, &c.] i. e. If before the images of those great men you exhibit scenes of vileness and infamy?
10. The nightly die, &c.] Pernox signifies that which lasts through the night. What avails it, that your room is furnished with busts, pictures, &c. of your noble ancestors, if, in that very room, before their faces, as it were, you are gambling and playing all night at dice?
11. If you begin to sleep, 3c.) If you, after a night's debauch,
Luciferi, quo signa Duces et castra movebant ?
are going to bed at day-break, the very time when those great ge, nerals were setting forth on their march to attack an enemy.
13. Fabius, &c.] Why should Fabius, the son of Qu. Fab. Max. imus, who overcame the Allobroges, boast in his father's achievements, and in the origin of his family's descent from Hercules, the care of whose altar was hereditary in that family. If he be covetous and vain, and unworthy of the honour which he claims ?
15. Softır than an Euganean lamb.] The sheep bred upon the Eu. ganean downs had the finest and softest fleeces in all Italy. To have a very soft and delicate skin was a mark of great effeminacy ; but more especially if, as the following line supposes, it was made so by art.
16. Catinensian pumite.] The best pumice-stones were gathered in Sicily, at the foot of Mount Ætna ; with these the effeminate Italians used to smooth their skins. Catina (now Catania) was a city near Mount Ætna, almost ruined by an earthquake, 1693. Here were the finest pumice-stones.
17. He shames, &c.] He dishonours the old and venerable pictures, or images, of his rough and hardy ancestors, now dirty with the rust of time, and thus disgraces the memory of those great men. Traduco signifies to expose to public shame. Ainsw. No. 5.
18. An image to be broken.] If he should cast a sadness over the whole family, as it were, by having his own image placed among those of his ancestor3, when he does such things as to deserve to have his image broken. - If any one, who had an image of himself, was convicted of a grievous crime, his image was to be broken to pieces, and his name erased from the calendar, either by the sentence of the judge, or by the fury of the people. Comp. sat. x. l. 58. Such must, most likely, be the case of a man who dealt in poisons to des. troy people.
19. Old waxen figures.] Images and likenesses of ancestors, made in wax, and set up as ornaments and memorials of the great persons from which they were taken.
Lucifer, at which those generals were moving their standards and
25 I acknowledge the nobleman :-Hail, Getulian !--or thou,
20. Virtue, &c.7 All the ensigns of grandeur and nobility are no. thing without this--it is this alone which stamps a real greatness up. on all who possess it.
21. Paulus.) Æmilius, who conqured Perses king of Macedonia, and led bim and his children in triumph :-he was a man of great fru. gality and modesty.
Cossus. ] He conquered the Getulians, under Agustus Cæsar -hence was called Getulicus. See l. 26.
Drusus.] There were three of this name, all of which deserv. ed well of the republic.
22. Put these before, &c.] Prefer the examples of those good men before the statues of your family.
23. Let them, &c.] If ever you should be consnl, esteem them before the fasces, and all the ensigns of your high office.
24. You owe me, &c.] The ornaments—bona, the good qualities
of the mind, are what I first insist upon ; these I expect to find in you, before I allow you to be indeed noble.
25. Honest. 7 Sanctus is an extensive word, and here may include piety to the gods, as well as justice, honesty, and truth towards men. See sat. iii. 137.
26. I acknowledge, &c.] I then acknowledge you as a man of quality.
- Hail, Getulian!] I salute you as if you were Cossus, the conqueror of Getulia--hence called Getulicus, l. 21, note.
- Or thou, &c.] Silanus was a noble Roman, who conquered Magon the Carthaginian general, took Hannon, another commander, prisoner, and did other great services to his country. .
q. d. If, besides your personal private virtues, (l. 24, 5.) you shew yourself a rare and choice citizen, eminently serviceable and useful to your country, like Silanus of old, from whatever blood you may derive your pedigree, however mean it may be, yet your