Obrázky na stránke
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

proelia quanta illic dispensatore videbis
armigero ? simplexne furor sestertia centum
perdere et horrenti tunicam non reddere servo ?
quis totidem erexit villas, quis fercula septem
secreto coenavit avus? nunc sportula primo
limine parva sedet turbae rapienda togatae.
ille tamen faciem prius inspicit et trepidat, ne
suppositus venias ac falso nomine poscas.
agnitus accipies ; iubet a praecone vocari
ipsos Troiugenas; nam vexant limen et ipsi
nobiscum. “ da praetori, da deinde tribuno."
sed libertinus prior est.• “prior," inquit, “ego adsum.
cur timeam, dubitemve locum defendere, quamvis
natus ad Euphraten, molles quod in aure fenestrae
arguerint, licet ipse negem ? sed quinque tabernae
quadringenta parant. quid confert purpura maior
optandum, si Laurenti custodit in agro
conductas Corvinus oves ? ego possideo plus
Pallante et Licinis." exspectent ergo tribuni,
vincant divitiae, sacro nec cedat honori,

.

105

110

a

see there, with the steward for arm-bearer! Is it not something more than madness to lose a hundred sestertia and not restore his tunic to the shivering slave? Which of our forefathers erected so many villas ? which of them supped by himself on seven courses ? Now-a-days the tiny “dole” occupies a place on the outer threshold, to be pounced upon by the toga-clad crowd. Yet the master looks into your face beforehand and is alarmed lest you come in the place of some one else, and apply under a false name. When you are identified you will be served; he orders the Trojugenae themselves to be summoned by his crier; for even such as they infest the threshold with us. “Help the Praetor, then help the Tribune." But a freedman has the precedence. "I am the first-comer," he says ; "why should I fear, or hesitate, to stand up for my turn, although born near the Euphrates, which the effeminate openings in my ears would attest, though I denied the fact myself? But for all that the five tabernae are worth four hundred sestertia to me. What so desirable does the Laticlave confer, if Corvinus keeps sheep for hire in the Laurentine country? I possess more than Pallas and the Licini." Let the Tribunes wait then ; let riches carry the day, nor let him give place

а

115

nuper in hanc urbem pedibus qui venerat albis,
quandoquidem inter nos sanctissima divitiarum
maiestas, etsi funesta pecunia templo
nondum habitas, nullas nummorum ereximus aras,
ut colitur Pax atque Fides Victoria Virtus
quaeque salutato crepitat Concordia nido.
sed cum summus honor finito computet anno,
sportula quid referat, quantum rationibus addat,
quid facient comites, quibus hinc toga, calceus hinc est
et panis fumusque domi? densissima centum
quadrantes lectica petit, sequiturque maritum
languida vel praegnans et circumducitur uxor.
hic petit absenti nota iam callidus arte,
ostendens vacuam et clausam pro coniuge sellam.
“ Galla mea est,” inquit, “ citius dimitte. moraris.”
“ profer Galla caput!" “ noli vexare, quiescit.”

Ipse dies pulchro distinguitur ordine rerum : sportula, deinde forum iurisque peritus Apollo atque triumphales, inter quas ausus habere

120

125

to the inviolable magistrate who not long ago came into this city with whitened feet, since among us the most sacred majesty is that of riches, although, as yet, pernicious money, you do not dwell in a temple of your own, nor have we erected altars to coin, in the same way as Peace is worshipped, and Faith, Victory, Virtue, and Concord, which twitters when the nest of her sacred birds is saluted. But when the highest magistrate computes at the end of the year what the "dole" brings in, how much it adds to his income, what will the dependents do who derive from this source their toga, their shoes, and bread, and firing for their households ? A dense crowd of litters comes in search of the hundred quadrantes ; and the wife, though sick, or in the family way, follows her husband, and is carried the round. One, grown cunning at an old trick, asks for the share of his wife, though absent, exhibiting an empty and closed sedan-chair in the place of his spouse. “It is my Galla," he says ; " dismiss us as soon as you can ; you are detaining us.” “Put out your head, Galla.” “Don't disturb her, she's asleep."

The day itself is portioned out with a beautiful ordering of events : the “dole," then the Forum and Apollo learned in the law, and the triumphal statues, among which I know not what "Aegyptius and

[ocr errors]

130

135

nescio quis titulos Aegyptius atque Arabarches,
cuius ad effigiem non tantum meiere fas est.
vestibulis abeunt veteres lassique clientes,
votaque deponunt, quamquam longissima coenae
spes homini : caulis miseris atque ignis emendus.
optima silvarum interea pelagique vorabit
rex horum, vacuisque toris tantum ipse iacebit.
nam de tot pulchris et latis orbibus et tam
antiquis una comedunt patrimonia mensa.
nullus iam parasitus erit. sed quis ferat istas
luxuriae sordes ? quanta est gula, quae sibi totos
ponit apros, animal propter convivia natum !
poena tamen praesens, cum tu deponis amictus
turgidus et crudum pavonem in balnea portas.
hinc subitae mortes atque intestata senectus;
it nova nec tristis per cunctas fabula coenas,
ducitur iratis plaudendum funus amicis.

Nil erit ulterius, quod nostris moribus addat posteritas; eadem cupient facientque minores; omne in praecipiti vitium stetit, utere velis,

140

145

Arabarches” has dared to place his titles of honour, at whose image one may, without sacrilege, commit more than one kind of nuisance. The old and wearied clients leave the porch and give up their hopes, though the expectation of a dinner is the most long-lived of all in man : the poor fellows must buy their pot-herbs and firing. In the meanwhile their patron will devour the choicest produce of forests and sea, and will recline in solitary state on the couches empty of all but himself ; for off so many beautiful and broad and antique round tables these people devour their patrimonies at a single course. Soon there will be no parasite; but who will bear such sordid luxury as this? What gluttony is that which serves up for itself whole boars, an animal created for banquets! Yet the penalty is at hand when you lay aside your clothes, gorged with food, and carry an undigested peacock to the bath. Hence, sudden deaths and intestate old age.

The new but not sorrowful tidings go the round of all the dinner-tables, and your funeral comes forth amidst the applause of disappointed friends.

There will be nothing further for posterity to add to our manners; our descendants will wish for and do the same things; every

vice

150

155

totos pande sinus. dicas hic forsitan "unde
ingenium par materiae ? unde illa priorum
scribendi, quodcumque animo flagrante liberet,
simplicitas, cuius non audeo dicere nomen?
quid refert dictis ignoscat Mucius an non?
pone Tigellinum, taeda lucebis in illa,
qua stantes ardent, qui fixo gutture fumant,
et latum media sulcum deducis arena."
qui dedit ergo tribus patruis aconita, vehatur
pensilibus plumis, atque illinc despiciat nos ?
“cum veniet contra, digito compesce labellum.
accusator erit, qui verbum dixerit ' hic est.'
securus licet Aeneam Rutulumque ferocem
committas, nulli gravis est percussus Achilles
aut multum quaesitus Hylas urnamque secutus ;
ense velut stricto quoties Lucilius ardens
infremuit, rubet auditor, cui frigida mens est
criminibus, tacita sudant praecordia culpa :
inde irae et lacrimae. tecum prius ergo voluta

160

165

has reached its culminating point. Take to your sails. Crowd all canvas. Perhaps you will say at this point, “Whence is to come the talent equal to the subject? Whence that straightforwardness of the ancients in writing whatever their burning impulses inclined them to, the very name of which I dare not utter? What does it matter whether a Mucius forgive your words or not? Portray Tigellinus : you will shine in the midst of those faggots in which they blaze, standing, who smoke with throat fixed to the stake, and you will draw a broad furrow in the midst of the sand." He, then, who has given aconite to his three uncles is to be carried on suspended downcushions, and thence look down on us? “ When he comes against you, close your lip with your finger. He who simply says the words, •That's he,' will be looked upon as his accuser. You may safely pit together Aeneas and the fierce Rutulian : Achilles, though struck down, will harm no one; nor Hylas, long sought for and gone after his pitcher. But as often as Lucilius has raged in his fury, as though with drawn sword, the hearer grows red whose conscience is chilled with the sense of crime, his innermost parts are clammy with concealed guilt. Hence rage and tears. Turn over, therefore, first haec animo ante tubas. galeatum sero duelli poenitet.” experiar quid concedatur in illos, quorum Flaminia tegitur cinis atque Latina.

[merged small][ocr errors]

SATIRA II.

5

LTRA Sauromatas fugere hinc libet et glacialem

Oceanum, quoties aliquid de moribus audent qni Curios simulant et Bacchanalia vivunt. indocti primum : quamquam plena omnia gypso Chrysippi invenies ; nam perfectissimus horum est, si quis Aristotelem similem vel Pittacon emit, et iubet archetypos pluteum servare Cleanthas. fronti nulla fides; quis enim non vicus abundat tristibus obscenis ? castigas turpia, cum sis inter Socraticos notissima fossa cinaedos. hispida membra quidem et durae per brachia setae

10

these things in your mind before the sound of the trumpet: when the helmet is on, it is too late to repent of the fight." I will try, then, what I may be permitted to do against those whose ashes are covered by the Flaminian and the Latin roads.

SATIRE II.

ONE feels inclined to fly from here beyond the Sarmatians and the Frozen Ocean, whenever those fellows dare to say anything about morals who ape the Curii and live like Bacchanals. Ignoramuses, to begin with, though you will find all their premises full of plastercasts of Chrysippus; for the most finished of these is he that has bought a likeness of Aristotle or Pittacus, and bids his bookcase hold originals of Cleanthes. There is no trusting the outside ; for what street is there that does not abound in debauchees of severe aspect? You rebuke abominations, while you yourself are the most notorious sink among the unnatural creatures who call themselves followers of Socrates. The shaggy limbs, indeed, and the stiff bristles

« PredošláPokračovať »