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be mighty by land and sea, the tall daughter of Nasica, who dreads paying up in full, shall wed gallant Coranus. Then shall the son-in-law thus proceed: to his father-in-law he shall give the tablets of his will, and pray him to read them. After many
a refusal at length Nasica shall take them, and read them to himself, (and shall find that nothing is left to 1 him and his but-to whine.")
70 Here's another hint I give you. If it so chance that some crafty dame or freedman sways an old dotard, make common cause with them. Praise them, that they may praise you behind your back. This too helps; but far better is it to storm the citadel itself. Will the idiot write poor verses? Praise them. Is he a libertine? See that he has not to ask you; yourself obligingly hand over Penelope to your better.
ULY. You think so! Can she be tempted,—she so good, so pure, whom the suitors could not turn from the straight course?
TIR. Yes, for the young suitors who came were sparing of their gifts; their thoughts were not so much on loving as on eating. So it is your Penelope is virtuous; but if just once she gets from one old man a taste of gain in partnership with you, then she will be like the hound, which can never be frightened away from the greasy hide.
84 I will tell you something that happened when I was old. A wicked old crone at Thebes, by the terms of her will, was buried thus: her corpse, well oiled, her heir carried on his bare shoulders. She
bi.e. a hide to which pieces of fat still cling. The speaker, now long dead, is a shade in the lower world.
scilicet elabi si1 posset mortua; credo,
quod nimium institerat2 viventi.
"Cautus adito :
neu desis operae neve immoderatus abundes. difficilem et morosum offendet3 garrulus; ultraa 90 non etiam sileas. Davus sis comicus atque stes capite obstipo, multum similis metuenti. obsequio grassare; mone, si increbruit aura, cautus uti velet carum caput; extrahe turba oppositis umeris; aurem substringe loquaci. importunus amat laudari: donecohe iam! ad caelum manibus sublatis dixerit, urge, crescentem tumidis infla sermonibus utrem.
"Cum te servitio longo curaque levarit, et certum vigilans,' quartae sit partis Ulixes,' audieris, 'heres': ergo nunc Dama sodalis nusquam est ? unde mihi tam fortem tamque fidelem ?
sparge subinde et, si paulum potes, illacrimare; est5 gaudia prodentem voltum celare.) sepulcrum permissum arbitrio sine sordibus exstrue: funus 105 egregie factum laudet vicinia. si quis
forte coheredum senior male tussiet, huic tu dic, ex parte tua seu fundi sive domus sit emptor, gaudentem nummo te addicere.
imperiosa trahit Proserpina: vive valeque."
1 si] ut sic V. 4 ultro.
Cf. "Davoque Chremeta eludente," Sat. i. 10. 40.
wanted, of course, to see whether she could give him the slip when dead. I suppose, when she was living, he had borne too hard upon her.
88 Be cautious in your approach; neither fail in zeal, nor show zeal beyond measure. A chatterbox will offend the peevish and morose; yet you must not also be silent beyond bounds. Act the Davus of the comedy," and stand with head bowed, much like one overawed. With flattery make your advances; warn him, if the breeze stiffens, carefully to cover up his precious pate; shoulder a way and draw him out of a crowd; make a trumpet of your ear when he is chattering. Does he bore you with his love of praise? Then ply him with it till with hands uplifted to heaven he cry "enough!" and blow up the swelling bladder with turgid phrases.
99 And when from your long care and servitude he sets you free, and wide awake you hear the words, "To one-fourth let Ulysses be heir," then, now and then, scatter about such words as these," Ah! is my old friend Dama now no more? Where shall I find one so firm, so faithful? and if you can do a bit of it, drop in some tears. If your face betray joy, you can hide it. If the tomb is left to your discretion, build it in style: let the neighbours praise the handsome funeral. If one of your co-heirs happens to be older than you, and has a bad cough, say to him that if he would like to buy land or a house that is in your share, you would gladly knock it down to him for a trifle.
But Proserpine, our queen, calls me back. Live and fare well!
TOWN AND COUNTRY LIFE
THIS famous Satire, which has been so happily imitated by Pope, contrasts the annoyances and discomforts of life in Rome with the peace and happiness enjoyed by the poet on his beloved Sabine farm.
It is probably owing to its peculiarly personal tone that for this Satire Horace does not set up a dialogue framework, but reverts to the monologue form of the First Book, although a large portion of the poem, viz. the fable of the Town and the Country Mouse, is put into the mouth of another speaker.
Kiessling has pointed out how the hours of morning (1-23) and of evening (60-76), as spent in the country, suggest the two side-pictures of a triptych, which enclose the central and larger picture, that of a day passed in Rome (23-59). The contrast thus presented between the peacefulness of rural life and the restlessness of city life is then summed up in the delightful allegory with which the Satire concludes (79-117). Nothing could be more artistic than such an arrangement.
Besides being one of the most charming of Horace's compositions, this Satire is important for settling some of the chronology of Horace's life. Thus 1. 38
seems to refer to the time which included the Battle of Actium and succeeding events, when Maecenas, in the absence of Octavian, had full control in Rome and Italy. The mention of the Dacians in 1. 53 reminds us that these people wavered between Octavian and Antony and that Crassus was sent against them in 30 B.C. Again, the assignment of lands to the veterans, referred to in l. 55, is doubtless the reward promised for services at Actium. In this connexion some of the soldiers mutinied in the winter of 31 B.C. The Satire therefore was composed late in 31 B.c. or early in 30 B.C., and it follows from 11. 40 ff. that Horace entered the circle of Maecenas
in 39 or 38 B.C. The Sabine farm was given to the poet some six years