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482. super: 'over him.'
483. meliorem animam : Dares would have been slain as a victim to Eryx; but the life of the bull is given as a more acceptable sacrifice. Eryx was the master of Entellus, and has just now, as a god, secured him the victory.
485-644. The trial of skill in archery. There are four competitors: Hippocoön, Mnest heus, Eurytion, Acestes. Their order is determined by lot. The mark is a dove fastened by a cord to a ship's mast, erected for the purpose in the 'long circus. The arrow of Hippocoön strikes the mast, but misses the bird. Mnestheus hits the string only, and the bird escapes. Eurytion kills her on the wing. Acestes discharges his arrow into the air at random. It takes fire and vanishes in the sky. In consequence of this miracle,
the old man is pronounced victor.
486. qui forte velint : 'such as perchance may wish.
487. Ingenti manu: 'with powerful hand.' See note on manu, l. 241.
488. traiecto in fune: 'by a string passed around it (the dove's foot).'
489. tendant: see note on I, 20.
492. locus : 'the place’; metonymy for the lot which decided the place or order. Hyrtacidae:
Hippocoön and Nisus (IX, 177) are both called Fig. 46. — An Ancient Bow
sons of Hyrtacus. man (1.500)
494. oliva: Mnestheus, as one of the victors in
the ship race, has still the olive wreath on his head. Eurytion, like Hippoco is not elsewhere mentioned. His brother Pandarus was famed for archery, and under the direction of Minerva (iussus) had broken off the truce with the Greeks by discharging an arrow at Menelaus.
498. Acestes : metonymy for the name or lot of Acestes. 499. et ipse: 'even he,' though aged.
501. Pro se quisque : ' each one with all his power.' H. 389, 3; LM. 1069; A. 202, d ; G. 318, 3; (H. 461, 3).
502. nervo stridente : ablative absolute.
505. timuit — pennis: the frightened bird showed its fear (timuit) by fluttering with its wings; the ablative expresses instrument.
506. ingenti – plausu: of those viewing the contest.
512. notos : 'winds'; governed by the preposition in. For a similar displacement of the preposition, see II, 654.
513. arcu contenta parato: strained on the ready bow.'
514. Tela: for the singular; “his shaft.' The arrow is said to be strained as well as the bow. See note on l. 507. fratrem: Eurytion invoked the aid of Pandarus, a deified hero, as Entellus (l. 483) that of Eryx.
521. Ostentans: the distant flight of the arrow, and the noise of the bow, would show the strength and skill of old Acestes.
522-524. Hic — vates : ‘hereupon a strange sight, sudden and destined to be a portent of great presage, meets their eyes. The great event afterward explained it, and the awful soothsayers interpreted the omens too late.' The event which this omen was intended to foreshadow has never been satisfactorily identified. It perhaps does not refer to the burning of the ships described 11. 659 sqq., but to later events in the history of Sicily, perhaps her wars with Rome.
530-532. nec maximus, etc.: Aeneas regards the prodigy as a token of divine favor toward Acestes, and laetum indicates the same understanding of it on the part of Acestes himself.
533, 534. voluit – auspiciis : ‘has made known his will by such tokens.'
534. exsortem : with te, used adverbially; apart from the lot,' 'out of due course '; i.e. he drew a prize not provided for among the premiums first proposed.
537. in magno munere: as a noble gift.
538. Ferre : see note on I, 66. sui monumentum: as a memento of himself.'
541. praelato-honori: 'the honor put before (his own).' He is not displeased that an extraordinary gift, eclipsing the first prize, should be presented to Acestes.
543. Proximus ingreditur donis : 'he advances next in gifts'; i.e. next in receiving a prize.
545-603. The cavalry exercise (cursus equorum) of Ascanius and his young companions is introduced in addition to the regular contests, and as a pleasing surprise to the spectators. Three leaders (ductores, magistri), Priamus, Atys, and Ascanius, command each a troop of twelve boys. They engage in complicated evolutions, compared by the poet to the Labyrinth of Daedalus, and are nearly through with the exercise, when they are suddenly interrupted by the news that the ships are on fire.
The martial game of the boys, here described, was called Troia, and was practiced by the Romans, especially in the time of Virgil, under the patronage of Augustus.
545. nondum - misso: when the contest (of the archers) had not yet been ended.'
Epytides had been called while the game of archery was still going on, that the troop of boys might be prepared to appear without delay. Certamine is regarded by some editors as equivalent to ludis.
546. Custodem: noble youths, both in the heroic age and in Virgil's time, were attended by guardians. Cf. 1. 257.
550. Ducat, ostendat: subjunctive with dic as a verb of commanding. See note on IV, 635. avo: ‘in honor of his grandfather.'
551. Ipse : Aeneas. longo circo: “from the long extended arena.'
552. Infusum: the multitude had ‘ poured in' (crowded) over the level ground during the trial in archery.
553. pariter : .equally,' or similarly equipped and adorned.
554. lucent: they shine in polished armor, and with their glittering weapons and golden ornaments. euntes: 'as they advance.'
554, 555. quos: with mirala, not fremit.
556. in morem: for de or ex more ; 'according to the custom' of boys in this game. “The hair of all was bound with a well-trimmed crown,' probably of olive leaves.
558. pectore : ablative of place. It is at the top of the breast' that the ends of the torques, or stiff twisted collar, come together.
560. numero: join with Tres. turmae : .companies'; synonymous with acies, l. 563, and agmina, l. 580. terni: 'three each,' and bis seni (1. 561), twelve each,' are distributive numerals.
561. secuti: as a present, like mirata, 1. 555.
562. Agmine partito: “the (whole) band being divided'; i.e. not being one organized company under a common leader, but consisting of three independent battalions (agmina), each with its own captain, though now, when they first enter, moving in one column. paribus magistris: their captains are well matched in age, rank, and appearance.
563. Una acies : sc. est.
564. It was customary among the Greeks to name the grandson after the grandfather.
565. auctura Italos: 'destined to swell the number of Italians'; Cato says that the people of Politorium, an Italian city, were the descendants of Polites. quem, etc. : ‘whom a Thracian horse bears, dappled with white spots, showing white pasterns (i.e. primi pedis, the front part of each foot), and a white forehead high upraised.'
566. vestigia pedis : ‘footsteps'; here for pedes. 567. arduus: has reference to the head alone.
568. Atys: the second leader is so called as a compliment to Augustus, whose mother belonged to the Atian gens.
569. puero: dative. Cf. IV, 31. The order of the words follows as in I, 684; III, 329.
572. Esse : prose construction would require ut, or qui esset. Cf. 1. 538.
575. plausu : join with excipiunt. pavidos: “trembling'; i.e. with boyish timidity and modesty.
578. Lustravere: ‘passed in review.' paratis: "ready,' the review being now ended.
579. longe: 'from afar.'
580, 581. agmina solvere: they separated their battalions ’; i.e. they break up the three companies that were proceeding in column. terni: i.e. each of the three companies divides into bands or sections (chori), each comprising one half, or six of the boys in the company. vocati: ‘being called, ie. by another signal from Epytides, they wheel and charge. The boys have galloped at the first signal of Epytides to their stations on the field, and now, at the second signal, commence the cavalry action, or sham fight, two of the squadrons maneuvering as allies against the third.
584. Adversi spatiis: ‘opposite in position.'
585. Impediunt: ‘intersect' or 'interweave.' sub armis: for armati. Cf. 1. 440. The passage (580-585) may thus be rendered : “they galloped apart in equal numbers, and the three companies broke up the line in parted bands; and again, when called, they wheeled (convertere vias) and charged with hostile weapons. Then they enter upon successive advances and retreats, confronting one another, and intersect circles with circles, one after another, and as armed men call up the image of battle.'
feruntur : ‘in truce they ride abreast ’; in a united column, just as in the opening review.
589. Parietibus: is scanned as four syllables, par-yet-i-bus. See note on II, 16. It is the ablative of manner with textum. caecis : •blind,' i.e. without doors or windows.
589, 590. ancipitem dolum, etc. : 'a treacherous winding rendered uncertain by a thousand pathways, where the untraced and inextricable maze rendered all guiding marks deceptive.'
592, 593. Haud — ludo : ‘in like (swift and devious) course do the sons of the Trojans intersect (each others') footsteps, and interweave retreats and charges in mock battle (ludo).'
594. Delphinum: H. 435, 4; LM. 573; A. 218, d; B. 204, 3; G. 359, R. I and N. 4; (H. 391, II, 4).
599. ipse, pubes: sc. celebravit.
602. Troia, etc.: ‘and now (the game) is called Troy, the boys the Trojan band.' dicitur : agrees with the predicate nominative. See H. 390; LM. 473; A. 204, b; B. 254, 3; G. 211, EXC. (6); (H. 462, N. 2). The sham fight called Troia was one of the games of the circus at Rome.
603. Hac - tenus: separated by tmesis. sancto patri: 'to the deified father'; Anchises.
604-699. The burning of the ships. While the games are in progress Juno sends Iris down to excite discontent among the Trojan women, who are assembled near the shore, not witnessing the games, but gazing mournfully on the sea, while they bemoan the death of Anchises. While they are grieving that so much of the sea is still to be crossed, and that they cannot put an end to their hardships by settling in Sicily, Iris presents herself in the form of Beroë, a Trojan matron, and gives utterance to the feelings which fill them all. They are roused to fury, and, seizing firebrands from the altars of Neptune, on which sacrifices are burning near the water, they hurl them into the ships. Presently the alarm is conveyed by Eumelus to the Trojan assembly at the tomb of Anchises. Ascanius, having scarcely completed the cavalry exercise, hastens on his horse, followed by Aeneas and the rest, to extinguish the fire. But it has already penetrated into the holds of the ships, and all human efforts are unavailing. Aeneas then calls upon Jupiter, who answers his prayer by sending down a flood of rain, and preserving all the ships save four.
604. Hic primum: ‘now first ’; for up to this moment the games had been going forward without any untoward accident. fidem mutata novavit:
changing fortune broke her faith’; a poetic expression for fidem mutavit. Her favor thus far had been a pledge, as it were, of continued favor throughout the day.
605. ludis : ablative of manner. tumulo: the dative as in avo, I. 550.
608. antiquum — dolorem: cf. I, 25. For the accusative, see note on 1, 228.
609. Illa : Iris. coloribus : ablative of description with arcum.
610. Nulli: see note on I, 326. virgo: •(a celestial) virgin'; in apposition with illa.
612. relictam : left' by the men.
613. secretae: 'apart '; separated from the assembly (concursum). sola acta : the strand was lonely compared with the concourse at the tomb.
615, 616. Heu - maris : "alas, to think that so many waters, that so much of the sea remains for us weary voyagers !! For the infinitive, see note on 1, 37. Compare the language of Tennyson, Lotus Eaters:
Weary the wandering fields of barren foam.' vox: predicate nominative with est understood, of which the foregoing clause is the subject.
618. medias: as medios, I, 440.
621. Cui: 'as one to whom.' A relative clause of cause. See note on 1, 388. Cui is better referred to Beroë than to Doryclus. Her rank made her a fit person for Iris to counterfeit.