Obrázky na stránke

Sed ne relictis, Musa procax, jocis

Ceae retractes munera naeniae:

Mecum Dionaeo sub antro

Quaere modos leviore plectro.

[ocr errors]


Dauniae, properly Apulae (Carm. i. 22, 14); here Romanae.—37. The poet, when about to go on at some length with this lament over the civil wars, recollects that his general purpose is to write only jocular poems (joci) of a lighter class (leviore plectro), not elegies (naeniae) such as, erewhile, the renowned poet, Simonides of Čos, composed: hence, now, Horace restrains the gush of his sorrow.39. Dionaeo sub antro. Dione, properly the mother of Venus, is sometimes, as here, Venus herself.



SALLUSTIUS CRISPUS, grandson of the sister of the historian, was a friend and imitator of Maecenas. He might, like him, being rich and a favourite of Augustus, have attained to the highest offices in the state; but preferred a quiet life as a simple Roman eques, and the tranquil enjoyment of his wealth. Horace praises him in this poem for the wise use which he makes of his fortune. The ode was written about the year 25 B. C.

NULLUS argento color est avaris

Abdito terris, inimice lamnae
Crispe Sallusti, nisi temperato
Splendeat usu.

Vivet extento Proculeius aevo
Notus in fratres animi paterni;



1. Nullus color est. Silver has no glitter so long as it lies concealed in the bowels of the earth: in the same way money is useless, if kept shut up in a chest, and not expended.-2. Lamnae, shortened form of laminae; properly, a plate of metal,' here used contemptuously of stamped or coined money. Connect the clauses thus: inimice lamnae, nisi — splendeat, who hatest money, unless it shines,' &c.-5. Proculeius was, in rank, merely a Roman eques, but a man of such distinction and consequence hat Augustus thought of giving him his daughter Julia to wife. He was praised as a pattern of brotherly love; for when his brothers Scipio and Murena lost their property in the civil wars, he shared with them his own fortune. Extento -aevo: his life will be lengthened, for nis fame will be immortal.-6. Animi paterni, 'for his fatherly feel


Illum aget penna metuente solvi
Fama superstes.

Latius regnes avidum domando
Spiritum, quam si Libyam remotis
Gadibus jungas et uterque Poenus
Serviat uni.

Crescit indulgens sibi dirus hydrops,

Nec sitim pellit, nisi causa morbi
Fugerit venis et aquosus albo



Corpore languor.

Redditum Cyri solio Phraaten

Dissidens plebi numero beatorum
Eximit virtus populumque falsis
Dedocet uti

Vocibus; regnum et diadema tutum
Deferens uni propriamque laurum,

[ocr errors]


ing.' Gram. 277, 2, note 1. Compare Zumpt, § 437.-7. Penna metuente solvi; that is, penna quae non solveter or dissolvetur. The goddess Fame is, as is well known, represented with wings. In the word solvi, Horace seems to allude to the story of Icarus, who fled from Crete along with his father Daedalus, by means of wings which the latter had constructed of wax. Icarus perished in the sea called after him Icarian-his wings having been melted by the heat of the sun.-10. Remotis Gadibus, to Gades (used for Spain) far distant from us.' Uterque Poenus also refers to this; for there was a Carthage in Spain as well as in Africa. The sense, consequently, is this: one who can rule his desires has a wider dominion than if he were lord of Spain and Africa.-13. Comparison of avarice with the disease of dropsy. As this disease grows, if it indulges itself (sibi indulgens)—that is, strives to quench with water the morbid thirst (this should, properly, be said of the sufferer, not of the disease) so also avarice, the more it has, the more it would have. Nothing but the conviction that virtue alone is able to make a man happy can eradicate this vice.-17. Phraaten. Phraates IV. king of the Parthians, whom his subjects had expelled for his cruelty, had recently (26 B. C.) been reinstated in his power by the help of the Scythians. He was thus Cyri solio redditus, restored to the throne of Cyrus;' for the Parthian monarchs considered themselves to be the successors of the old kings of Persia.-18. Dissidens plebi virtus, virtue, dissenting from the common people; that is, the wise and virtuous man, being of a different opinion from the mass of the people, who regard Phraates as happy because he has been restored to his kingdom, numero beatorum eximit, excepts him from the number of the happy,' does not consider him as really happy. Observe, in the scanning of this line, that the um of beatorum is cut off before the first word of the next line, which begins with a vowel.-22. Deferens uni, yielding, ascribing to him alone.' The doctrine of the Stoics, of whom Horace is here chiefly thinking, was that the wise man only was happy; and was a king, having a crown secure and indestructible, and the laurel peculiar to him.

Quisquis ingentes oculo irretorto
Spectat acervos.

self, belonging to him alone (propriam laurum.)—23. Oculo irretorto. A person is said to throw back his looks or glances (oculos retorquere), who, on going away from anything which he is anxious but unable to possess, casts his eyes wistfully towards it. Hence oculo irretorto is here said of him who can pass by great heaps of gold without even looking at them.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

Q. DELLIUS, to whom this poem is addressed, was one of that numerous class of Romans, who, not possessing any spirit of political independence, and being heedless of, if indeed they had, any inward conviction, were content, during the civil wars, to follow the majority, and the tide of success. He had been connected in succession with all the great parties, and was now in favour with Augustus. This ode, however, has no reference to his character or political relations, but is simply an exhortation to enjoy life temperately, never going to excesses either of joy

or sorrow.

AEQUAM memento rebus in arduis
Servare mentem, non secus in bonis
Ab insolenti temperatam
Laetitia, moriture Delli,

Seu maestus omni tempore vixeris,
Seu te in remoto gramine per dies
Festos reclinatum bearis

Interiore nota Falerni.


1. Aequam mentem should refer properly to equanimity in prosperity (in bonis, scil. reus) as well as in adversity (in arduis rebus); but the regular use of the expression in Latin is in regard only to calmness under affliction and calamity: so here. Equanimity in prosperity is expressed by mens temperata ab insolenti laetitia, ‘a mind kept free from immoderate joy.'-4. Moriture is to be connected with the following seu seu; who art doomed to die, whether.. . . . or... ..'-6. Remoto; namely, from the world, and the harassing pursuits of men.- 7. Bearis beatum reddideris, hast blessed.'-8. Interiore nota. To the amphorae, in which the wine was kept, short notices (nolae) were affixed, stating the year by the names of the consuls. Hence nota here is equiva

[ocr errors]

Qua pinus ingens albaque populus
Umbram hospitalem consociare amant
Ramis, et obliquo laborat

Lympha fugax trepidare rivo,

Huc vina et unguenta et nimium breves

Flores amoenae ferre jube rosae,

Dum res et aetas et sororum

Fila trium patiuntur atra.

Cedes coëmptis saltibus et domo
Villaque, flavus quam Tiberis lavit;
Cedes et exstructis in altum
Divitiis potietur heres.

Divesne prisco natus ab Inacho
Nil interest an pauper et infima
De gente sub divo moreris,
Victima nil miserantis Orci.

Omnes eodem cogimur, omnium
Versatur urna serius ocius

Sors exitura et nos in aeternum
Exilium impositura cymbae.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

lent to sort,' and interior is, 'taken from the inner part of the cel lar; that is, stored up longer ago, hence better.-11. On the bank of a winding stream (rivus obliquus), where pines and poplars grow. Laborat lympha trepidare; that is, cum labore trepidat lym pha; the water flows, as it were, with labour and difficulty over the pebbles of the brook, and its rippling is a trepidatio.-13. Nimium breves flores, the flowers, too soon to fade.' For ferre we should expect ferri, but supply puerum. 15. Res, your circumstances, fortune. Sororum trium, the three Parcae, of Fates.-17. Salti bus = pascuis, pastures,' on which extensive flocks were kept.18. As to flavus, compare i. 2, 13. - 22. Nil interest divesne (that is, utrum dives) — an pauper — sub divo moreris. Prisco natus ab Inacho, sprung from ancient Inachus,' a fabulous king of Argos; hence of ancient and noble descent.' Sub divo morari in lerra vivere.- 25. Eodem cogimur; that is, in eundem locum (eodem being thus an adverb) compellimur.-26. Connect the words thus: versatur sors (the lot is shaken') exitura (ex) urna serius ocius. In the most ancient kind of trial by lot (mentioned even by Homer), the lots were cast into an urn, which was then shaken, and that which fell out was the one taken. 28. Cymbae, Charon's boat, which will take us over the Styx to eternal exile - residence in the land of shades.

[ocr errors]

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]



THIS ode is addressed to a certain Septimius, a person otherwise unknown, but who appears to have been an intimate friend of Horace. The poet laments that he is about, probably in the company of some noble Roman, to set out for Spain, where in the years 27 and 26 в. c., a fierce war was carried on with the tribe of the Cantabri. He declares that he is wearied of an unsettled life and of campaigning; and he wishes, as the abode of his old age, either his house in Tibur or one in Tarentum.

SEPTIMI, Gades aditure mecum et
Cantabrum indoctum juga ferre nostra et
Barbaras Syrtes, ubi Maura semper
Aestuat unda;

Tibur, Argeo positum colono,

Sit meae sedes utinam senectae,
Sit modus lasso maris et viarum

Unde si Parcae prohibent iniquae,
Dulce pellitis ovibus Galaesi
Flumen et regnata petam Laconi
Rura Phalanto.

Ille terrarum mihi praeter omnes
Angulus ridet, ubi non Hymetto

[ocr errors]

[blocks in formation]

2. Indoctum, 'who has not learned, and will not learn;' juga ferre nostra, to bear our yoke,' the Roman supremacy. -3. Syrtes. The fancy of the poet connects Africa with Spain, and he names the part of Africa least cultivated, and most inaccessible to ships. 5. Argeo positum colono, founded by Argive colonists.' See 18, 2.-7. Lasso maris, weary of the sea.' In prose we should have had the ablative instead of the genitive. Gram. $277, 2, note 1. Comp. Zumpt, $ 437. Modus finis.-9. Unde si Parcae prohibent, if the Fates keep me from this;' namely, from living in Tibur; hence unde =a Tibure.-10. Dulce-flumen. Galaesus (modern Galaso) was the name of a river in the neighbourhood of Tarentum. The district was admirably suited for the breeding of sheep, and Tarentine wool and Tarentine dyes were famous among the Romans. Ovibus pellitis is the dative. The sheep are called pellitae, because they used to be covered with hides to protect the wool from impurity and injury.—12. Rura regnata Phalanto Laconi poetical for rura gubernata olim a Phalanto. Phalantus, a Lacedae monian, is said to have founded Tarentum.-14. Angulus, in refer. ence to the fact that Tarentum was situated in the furthest corner

« PredošláPokračovať »