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Helleborum frustra, cum iam cutis aegra tumebit, poscentis videas: venienti occurrite morbo,

et quid opus Cratero magnos promittere montis? discite, o miseri, et causas cognoscite rerum: quid sumus, et quidnam victuri gignimur; ordo quis datus, aut metae qua mollis flexus et unde; quis modus argento, quid fas optare, quid asper utile nummus habet, patriae carisque propinquis quantum elargiri deceat, quem te deus esse

63. timebit u superscr. 67. aut.

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2 S. 4. 50., 2 Ep. 1. 176. See 6. 12 note. 62. ex tempore, off hand,' 'on the spur of the moment;' versus fundere ex tempore' Cic. de Or. 3. 50: so that ' ex tempore vivere' is to live by the rule of impulse;' not, as Heinr. thinks, equivalent to 'in diem vivere,'' to live from hand to mouth.' [With the whole comp. Marcus Aurelius 2. 7 ληροῦσι γὰρ καὶ διὰ πράξεων οἱ κεκμηκότες ἐν τῷ βίῳ, καὶ μὴ ἔχοντες σκοπόν, ἐφ ̓ ὃν πᾶσαν ὁρμὴν καὶ καθάπαξ φαντασίαν ἀπευθυνοῦσιν.]

63-76. There is such a thing as trying to mend when it is too late. Be wise in time-learn your duty-where to bound your wishes-on what objects to spend money what is your mission in life. Such knowledge will stand a lawyer in better stead than all the wealth his fees may be bringing him.'

63. helleborum. Black hellebore was given in dropsies, Plin. 25. 5. 22, after Dioscorid. 4. 151, referred to by Jahn.

cutis aegra tumebit, vv. 95, 98. Observe Persius' frequent reference to the dropsy, when he wishes to choose an instance of disease, 1. 23 (?) 55., 3. 63, 88 foll.; apparently because it is directly traceable to indulgence. In the present passage he may have thought of Horace, 1 Ep. 2. 33 Ut te ipsum serves, non expergisceris? atqui, Si noles sanus, curres hydropicus.'

64. Principiis obsta: sero medicina paratur, Cum mala per longas invaluere moras' Ov. R. A. 91 foll., quoted by Madan.

65. et quid is the reading of all the MSS. but one, which has 'ecquid,' as Orelli reads. Jahn (1843) seems right in connecting the present line closely

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with the preceding- Meet the disease in its first stages, and what need will there be?' 'et' marking the consequence. Dic quibus in terris, et eris mihi magnus Apollo' Virg. E. 3. 104. [In his last edition Jahn puts a full-stop after 'morbo.']

Craterus, Hor. 2 S. 3. 161. See note on 2. 14.

magnos promittere montis, a proverbial phrase. Jahn compares Ter. Phorm. I. 2. 18 modo non montes auri pollicens,' Heinr. Sall. Cat. 23 maria montesque polliceri coepit,' from which it appears that the expression was variously understood, some taking it of mountains of gold, others of actual mountains. [Comp. Plautus Stich. 1. 1. 26' Persarum Montes qui esse aurei perhibentur:' 'argenti montes' ib. Mil. 4. 2. 73: and Varro Sat. Menipp. p. 103 Riese.] 'You will not then be driven to the frantic offers which patients in desperation make to their physicians.'

The hiatus is like

66. discite, o. that in Hor. 3 Od. 14. 11 'male ominatis Parcite verbis,' if the reading is correct. [Πότε δὲ (ἀπολαύσεις) τῆς ἐφ ̓ ἑκάστου γνωρίσεως, τί τε ἐστὶ κατ ̓ οὐσίαν, καὶ τίνα χώραν ἔχει ἐν τῷ κόσμῳ κ.τ.λ. M. Aurelius 10. 9; comp. ib. 2. 9. Persius' words contain a similar exhortation applied directly to practice.]

causas cognoscite rerum is doubtless from Virg. G. 2. 490; but Virgil means the physical causes of nature; Persius the final cause of human life, Juvenal's vivendi causas' (8. 84).

67. sumus, etc. The questions, though really dependent, being put in an inde

It is too late to ask for hellebore, as you see men doing, when the skin is just getting morbid and bloated. Meet the disease at its first stage, and what occasion is there to promise Craterus gold-mines for a cure? Be instructed, poor creatures, and acquaint yourselves with the causes of things,-what we are, what life we are sent into the world to lead, what is the rank assigned ́us at starting, where is the smooth turn round the goal and when to take it, what should be the limit to our fortune, what we may lawfully wish for, what is the good of coin fresh from the mint, how much ought to be spent on one's country and one's near and dear friends, what part God has ordained you to bear, and what is your

pendent form, except 'deceat' v. 71. Compare Prop. 4. 5. 25 foll. The questions here proposed are Stoic questions, and have been largely illustrated by Casaubon, though the whole passage apparently modelled on Hor. I Ep. 18. 96 foll. Inter cuncta leges et percontabere doctos, Qua ratione queas traducere leniter aevum,' etc.


quid sumus. Cic. Fin. 4. 10, speaking of the points on which Stoics and Academics agree, Sequitur illud ut animadvertamus qui simus ipsi ... Sumus igitur homines: ex animo constamus et corpore, quae sunt cuiusdam modi;' from which he goes on to deduce the end of life, 'secundum naturam vivere,' so as to illustrate Persius' second inquiry. [Comp. Epictetus 2. 10. I.]

quidnam victuri gignimur. Casaubon also quotes Marc. Antonin. 8. 52 ὁ δὲ μὴ εἰδὼς πρὸς ὅ τι πέφυκεν, οὐκ οἶδεν ὅστις ἐστὶν οὐδὲ τί ἐστι κόσμος.

quidnam='quam vitam.'

victuri, not expressing time but purpose. See note on I. 100.

ordo seems rightly explained by Heinr. and Jahn with reference to what follows, of the position for starting in the chariot race. Compare Soph. El. 710 στάντες δ ̓ ἵν ̓ αὐτοὺς οἱ τεταγμένοι βραβεῖς Κλήροις ἔπηλαν καὶ κατέστησαν Sippovs. The word however is a Stoic one, Tágis (or xwpa?) Epictet. Ench. 22.

68. Most MSS. read quam,' which Casaubon retains; but Orelli, Heinr., and Jahn rightly prefer qua. The difficulties of rounding the goal in a chariot race are well known. See Hom. Il. 23. 306 foll., Soph. El. 720., Hor. 1 Od. 1. 4.

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flexus, like 'flectere metam' Stat. Theb. 6. 440. Jahn. 'In

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unde, whence to begin the turn. The choosing of places and the fixing of the goal are mentioned closely together. Hom. Il. 23. 358 στὴν δὲ μεταστοιχεί σήμηνε δὲ τέρματ' Αχιλλεύς, imitated by Virgil, Aen. 5. 129-132.

69. quis modus argento, probably imitated from Lucil. ap. Lact. I. D. 6. 5. 2 'Virtus, quaerendae finem rei scire modumque.'


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quid fas optare carries us back to Sat. 2. Quid sentire putas? quid credis, amice, precari?' Hor. I Ep. 18. 106, 'Nil ergo optabunt homines?' Juv. 10. 346. Suet. Nero 44 for new coin, rough from the die. Possibly Persius may mean, 'What is the good of money hoarded up and not circulated (tritus)?' Compare Hor. I S. 1. 41 foll., 73 Nescis quo valeat nummus? quem praebeat usum ?'

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70. Lucil. 1. c. • Commoda praeterea patriae sibi prima putare Deinde parentum, tertia iam postremaque nostra.' Persius however was thinking more of Hor. 2 S. 2. 104 Cur, improbe, carae Non aliquid patriae tanto emetiris acervo?'

carisque propinquis is from Hor. I S. 1. 83. Compare also Hor. A. P. 312 'Qui didicit patriae quid debeat et quid amicis,' and Virg. G. 2. 514 Hinc patriam parvosque penatis Sustinet.'

71. elargiri, a very rare word.

quem te deus esse iussit. 'Supra, Discite quid sumus: sed aliud est; nam ibi natura hominis proponebatur inquirenda, hic personae qualitas, ibi inquam

iussit, et humana qua parte locatus es in re. disce, nec invideas, quod multa fidelia putet in locuplete penu, defensis pinguibus Umbris, et piper et pernae, Marsi monumenta clientis, menaque quod prima nondum defecerit orca. Hic aliquis de gente hircosa centurionum


dicat Quod sapio satis est mihi. non ego curo esse quod Arcesilas aerumnosique Solones,

obstipo capite et figentes lumine terram,

murmura cum secum et rabiosa silentia rodunt

75. munimenta.


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φύσεως πέρι agebatur, hic περὶ σχέσεως. Casaubon. The words appear to be explained by those which follow, 'humana qua parte locatus es in re,' and if so, not to differ materially from ordo quis datus.' Thus, quem.. esse = ' 'quas partes agere.'

72. humana res, apparently on the analogy of res Romana.' ['Sic etiam in magno quaedam respublica mundo est' Manilius 5. 737. The Stoical doctrine that the universe is a great móλis of which all men are ToλITα is well known.]

locatus seems to be another equivalent of Teтayμévos, implying the notion of a station or post which a man is bound not to desert. [Comp. Socrates' language in Plato's Apology, 17. 29.] Casaubon quotes Arrian I. 9 ἀνάσχεσθε ἐνοικοῦντες ταύτην χώραν, εἰς ἣν ἐκεῖνος ὑμᾶς ἔταξεν. 'Locum virtutis deseruit' Hor. I Ep. 16. 67.

73. Persius changes from discite' to disce, as he had changed from 'gignimur to locatus es.' It matters little whether we connect disce' with what goes before, or make it begin a new


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invideas (discere') as Jahn explains it. His te quoque iungere, Caesar, Invideo Lucan 2. 550. μάνθανε, μηδὲ φθόνει. The lines which follow must refer to the man whom Persius is addressing, not to some other person, as there is no sort of specification. We must suppose then that Persius finally leaves the youth to whom he has been appealing at v. 62. He then delivers a more general admonition, at last singling

out a person whom he chooses to describe as a rich lawyer. Do not grudge me your attention because your stores are full.'

73. multa fidelia putet. The details, and the word 'putet,' are meant to be contemptuous. Your stores are so full


you cannot eat the good things while they are fresh.' Quod hospes Tardius adveniens vitiatum commodius quam Integrum edax dominus consumeret' Hor. 2 S. 2. 90. There is a coarseness in fees paid in kind, as in Aristoph. Clouds 648, where Strepsiades offers to fill Socrates' trough with meal, though the notion here is that of rude plenty, not as in Juv. 7. 119, Mart. 4. 46, of a penurious trucksystem.

74. Among your plenteous stores;' penus comprehending all the contents of the larder. 'Est enim omne quo vescuntur homines penus' Cic. N. D. 2. 27.

pinguibus, another touch of sarcasm. Men who have to borrow your wits and give you in return the sort of produce in which they are most abundant.

75. pernae. Siccus petasunculus et vas Pelamydum' form part of Juvenal's list (1. c. Mayor's note). For the simplicity of the Marsians, Jahn compares Juv. 3. 169., 14. 180.

76. You have not yet finished the first jar they sent you,' much less the others. Themena' was a common sort of sea fish. Qui enim voluptatem ipsam contemnunt, iis licet dicere, se aci

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position in the human commonwealth. Be instructed, and do not grudge the trouble on the strength of the jars of good things turning bad in your well-stored larder, your fees for defending your fat friends from Umbria, or the pepper and hams, the remembrancer of your Marsian client, or because you may not yet have come to the last sprat of the first barrel.

Here we may suppose a gentleman of the unsavoury profession of centurion to strike in, I know all I've any need to know. I don't want to be like one of your Arcesilases or your poor louts of Solons, stooping their heads and nailing the ground with their eyes, as they stand grinding queer noises and mad-dog silence all

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77. The soldier is introduced after the lawyer. Compare Hor. I S. 1. 4 foll., where they are classed together. Persius hates the military cordially (compare 5. 181-191) as the most perfect specimens of developed animalism, and consequently most antipathetic to a philosopher. See Nisard Études sur les Poëtes Latins, I. 236-239. Horace merely glances at the education their sons received, as contrasted with that given to him by his father in spite of narrow means, 1 S. 6. 72. Juvenal has an entire satire on them (16), in which he complains of their growing power and exclusive privileges, but without any personal jealousy.

de gente of the clan,' used contemptuously, to imply that the soldiers form a class by themselves.

hircosa, opp. to 'unguentatus' in a fragm. of Seneca ap. Gell. 12. 2. II ut licet scripti sint inter hircosos, possint tamen inter unguentatos placere.' Compare Hor. I S. 2. 27. The Stoic simplicity is meant to be contrasted with the coarseness of the soldiery on the one hand as with the effeminacy of the young aristocracy on the other-two different modes of pampering the body at the expense


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I. 34 note.


80. obstipo capite, Hor. 2 S. 5. 92. 'Bent forward' Freund.

figentes lumine terram, a stronger, and consequently more scornful, expression than 'figentes lumina in terra.' Jahn quotes a parallel from Stat. Silv. 5. 1. 140 domum, torvo quam non haec lumine figat.' Casaubon compares Plato Alc. 2. p. 138 Α φαίνει γέ τοι ἐσκυθρω‐ πακέναι τε καὶ εἰς γῆν βλέπειν, ὥς τι ξυννοούμενος.

81. rabiosa silentia, a mad dog's silence' (Hor. 2 Ep. 2. 75), because mad dogs do not bark. ἄφωνοι τοὐπίπαν εἰσί .. χωρὶς ὑλαγμοῦ. Paul. Aegin. 5. 3, cited by Jahn. Compare Hom. II. 3. 217 foll., referred to by Jahn, στάσκεν, ὑπαὶ δὲ ἴδεσκε κατὰ χθονὸς ὄμματα πήξας, Σκῆπτρον δ ̓ οὔτ ̓ ὀπίσω οὔτε προπρηνὲς ἐνώμα, ̓Αλλ ̓ ἀστεμφὲς ἔχεσκεν ἀΐδρει φωτὶ ἐοικώς· Φαίης κεν ζάκοτόν τινα ἔμμεναι ἄφρονά τ' αὕτως. Persius may have had the picture in his mind.

rodunt, biting the lips and grinding the teeth.' Whether 'murmura' and 'silentia' are acc. of the object or cognates is not clear.

atque exporrecto trutinantur verba labello,

aegroti veteris meditantes somnia, gigni

de nihilo nihilum, in nihilum nil posse reverti.

hoc est, quod palles? cur quis non prandeat, hoc est?' His populus ridet, multumque torosa inventus ingeminat tremulos naso crispante cachinnos.

'Inspice; nescio quid trepidat mihi pectus et aegris faucibus exsuperat gravis alitus; inspice, sodes!' qui dicit medico, iussus requiescere, postquam tertia conpositas vidit nox currere venas, de maiore domo modice sitiente lagoena lenia loturo sibi Surrentina rogabit.

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82. exporrecto labello. Jahn compares Lucian Hermot. I. I kaÌ тÀ XEíλŋ διεσάλευες ἠρέμα ὑποτονθορύζων. Casaubon compares Aristaenetus Ep. 2. 3 ἠρέμα τω χείλη κινεῖ καὶ ἄττα δήπου πρὸς ἑαυτὸν ψιθυρίζει.

trutinantur verba is copied no less than five times by Jerome (for the references see Jahn), who however mistakes the sense, as if Persius were speaking of inflated talk, not of slow balanced


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83. Aegri somnia' Hor. A. P. 7. Jahn explains aegroti veteris like ' aegri veteris' Juv. 9. 16, one who has long been ill-a confirmed invalid; but it seems better to suppose that Persius means to combine the dotings of age with the wanderings of disease.

84. Nullam rem e nilo gigni divinitus unquam' is the first principle of the epicurean philosophy, according to Lucr. 1. 150; but it was common to various schools. [See Munro ad loc.] Casaubon quotes Marc. Anton. 4. 4 o C Tôi μηδενὸς ἔρχεται, ὥσπερ μηδ' εἰς τὸ οὐκ ὃν ἀπέρχεται.

in nilum, etc. 'Haud igitur possunt ad nilum quaeque reverti . . . . Haud igitur redit ad nilum res ulla : sed omnes Discidio redeunt in corpore materiaï' Lucr. 1. 248 foll. Here the repetition is meant to be ludicrous, as in 1. 27. Jahi.

85. Casaubon quotes Sen. Ep. 48,

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who exclaims seriously, 'O pueriles ineptias! in hoc supercilia subduximus? in hoc barbam demisimus? hoc est quod tristes docemus et pallidi?' which seems to show that 'quod palles' is to be explained here as a cogn. acc.


cur quis non prandeat. pransi correptus voce magistri' Hor. 2 S. 3. 257. 'Prandium' was peculiarly a military meal, so it is mentioned here feelingly. 'Medo prandente' Juv. 10. 178. See De Quincey, Casuistry of Roman Meals (Selections, vol. 3), who mistakes the present passage, doubtless quoting from memory, though right in his general view. With the whole line compare Juv. 7. 96 tunc utile multis Pallere, et vinum toto nescire Decembri.' 86. his.. ridet. Not a very common use of the dative. Dolis risit Cytherea repertis Virg. Aen. 128. Jahn compares Hor. 2 S. 8. 83.

multum, probably with 'torosa,' as Jahn takes it. ['Socer huius vir multum bonus est,' says Cicero, Leg. Agr. 3. 3, ironically so that there may be a tinge of sarcasm in the idiom. Comp. 'bene mirae eritis res' S. I. III.]

torosa, an epithet of the necks of cattle, Ov. M. 7. 429.

torosa iuventus contrasts with 'insomnis et detonsa iuventus' v. 54, as being naturally the approving audience of the soldier's speech.

87. The description is not in the

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