Obrázky na stránke
PDF
ePub

trappings to the mob! I can look under them and see your skin. Are you not ashamed to live the loose life of Natta? But he is paralyzed by vice; his heart is overgrown with thick collops of fat; he feels no reproach; he knows nothing of his loss; he is sunk in the depth and makes no more bubbles on the surface.

Great Father of the Gods, be it thy pleasure to inflict no other punishment on the monsters of tyranny, after their nature has been stirred by fierce passion, that has the taint of fiery poison-let them look upon virtue and pine that they have lost her for ever ! Were the groans from the brazen bull of Sicily more terrible, or did the sword that hung from the gilded cornice strike more dread into the princely neck beneath it than the voice which

seems

—and so perhaps the Scholiast, though he confuses matters by supposing the image to be that of a man absorbed by a 'caenosa vorago.' Casaubon quotes Philo 6TI χειρον κ. τ.λ. p. 142 D,-speaking of the flood of sensible objects that pours in on the mind-τότε γαρ εγκαρπωθείς ο νους τοσούτω κλύδωνι βύθιος ευρίσκεται, μηδ' όσον ανανήξασθαι και υπερκύψαι δυνάuevos.

35-43. 'No torture that can be inflicted on the sinner can be worse than that in the moment of temptation he should see virtue as she is, and gnash his teeth that he cannot follow her. The bull of Phalaris, the sword of Damocles, are as nothing compared with the daily " sense of running darkly to ruin” from the effect of concealed sin.'

35. tyrannos, as inventors of tortures for others, and therefore deserving the worst tortures themselves, probably with reference to the historical allusions which follow, vv. 39-41. Persius doubtless thought of Hor. 1 Ep. 2. 58 • Invidia Siculi non invenere tyranni Maius tormentum,' 'intabescant' referring to 'invidia ’ (compare ‘macrescit' v. 57). Juv. apparently imitates both (13. 196), “Poena autem vehemens ac multo saevior illis Quas et Caedicius gravis invenit aut Rhadamanthus.'

36. libido moverit ingenium, 'ut ingenium est omnium Hominum ab labore proclive ad libidinem' Ter. Andr. 1. I.

about opóvnous, Phaedrus p. 250 D.]
intabescant

taken from Ovid's description of envy (M. 2. 780), intabescitque videndo Successus hominum.'

relicta, abl. abs. Compare Virg. Aen. 4. 692 Quaesivit caelo lucem ingemuitque reperta. Though relicta ' here stands not for 'postquam,' but for quod eam reliquerunt. The line, as Jahn remarks, has more force, expressed as it is in the form of a prayer, than if it had been regularly connected with the preceding sentence, 'haud alia ratione quam ut.' The sentiment is Ovid's Video meliora,' etc.

39. gemuerunt, because the groans of the victims passed for the bellowings of the bull. Gemere' might possibly be used of the animal itself, as it is applied by Lucr. 3. 297 to the lion—but it is doubtless substituted here for ‘mugire,' not only as adding to the poetry of the passage by combining the images of the bull and the victim, but for the sake of the comparison, which is to illustrate human suffering.

40. This reference to the story of Damocles is probably imitated from Hor. 3 Od. 1. 17 'Destrictus ensis cui super impia Cervice pendet, non Siculae dapes Dulcem elaborabunt saporem.'

41. purpureas .. cervices, a bolder expression than 'purpurei (=purpurati) tyranni' Hor. i Od. 35. 12, from which it is doubtless taken. The epithet so chosen suggests the notion not merely of splendour, but of the splendour of a tyrant, so as to be virtually equivalent to Horace's impia cervice.' [ Cervices' is usual for cervix.']

[blocks in formation]

45

imus praecipites' quam si sibi dicat et intus palleat infelix, quod proxima nesciat uxor?

Saepe oculos, memini, tangebam parvus olivo, grandia si nollem morituri verba Catonis discere, non sano multum laudanda magistro, quae pater adductis sudans audiret amicis. iure: etenim id summum, quid dexter senio ferret, scire erat in voto; damnosa canicula quantum raderet; angustae collo non fallier orcae; neu quis callidior buxum torquere flagello.

50

[blocks in formation]

42. imus praecipites. • Peccatis indulgens praecipitem amicum ferri sinit' Cic. de Amic. 24. The Delph. ed. and Jahn refer to the celebrated opening of Tiberius' letter to the Senate (Tac. Ann. 6. 6, Suet. Tib. 67) • Quid scribam vobis, P. C., aut quomodo scribam, aut quid omnino non scribam hoc tempore, Dii ne Deaeque peius perdant quam perire me quotidie sentio, si scio :' but they omit Tacitus' comment, which is at least as much to the point : Neque frustra praestantissimus sapientiae firmare solitus est, si recludantur tyrannorum mentes, posse adspici laniatus et ictus: quando ut corpora verberibus, ita saevitia, libidine, malis consuetis, animus dilaceretur.'

42. intus palleat, not a very intelligible expression at first sight, appears to include the notions of depth and secrecy.

43. palleat. quod nesciat is the acc. of the object, as in 5. 184 'recutitaque sabbata palles,' not the cogn., as in 1. I 24 note.

proxima .. uxor, “the wife of his bosom ;' compare the use pinquus.'

44-62. 'I remember my school days, which were unprofitable enough. I used to shirk recitation-lessons, because all my ambition was to excel in games of chance or skill—but you have had an insight into what wisdom is, and have learnt something of the excellence of virtue. Dropping off again — nodding and yawning ?

Have you really no object in life?'

44. tangebam, the reading of the best MSS. for tingebam,' is supported by Ov. A. A. 1. 661 . Si lacrimae .. Deficient, uda lumina tange manu' (König, Jahn,) and by the Scholiast Oculi oleo tacti perturbantur ad tempus.' The object of the application, however, as most of the old commentators, Heinr., and Jahn perceive, was not to produce irritation or anything which had the appearance of it, but to make believe that his eyes were weak by his use of the remedy. Cum tua pervideas oculis mala lippus inunctis' Hor. I S. 3. 25. Non tamen idcirco contemnas lippus inungi' 1 Ep. 1. 29. parvus,

when a child.' Memini quae plagosum mihi parvo Orbilium dictare' Hor. 2 Ep. 1. 70.

45. grandia; a dying speech made for Cato, like the oration to Sulla, Juv. I. 16, and the 'suasoria' made for Hannibal, id. 7. 161 foll. See Tac. Or. 35. Here the speech seems not the boy's own composition, but that of some one else, perhaps the master, and learnt by the boy.

46. non sano expresses Persius' scorn for the whole system of education—the choice of such subjects for boys, and the praise given to contemptible efforts-perhaps on account of the father's presence. There is much to the same effect in Tac. 1. c.

laudanda = 'quae laudaret,' after the analogy of 'tradere, curare, etc.,

fa

of 'pro

whispers to the heart, “We are going, going down the precipice,' and the ghastly inward paleness, which is a mystery, even to the wife of the bosom?

Often, I remember, as a small boy I used to give my eyes a touch with oil, if I did not want to learn Cato's grand dying speech, sure to be vehemently applauded by my wrong-headed master, that my father might hear me recite in a glow of perspiring ecstacy with a party of friends for the occasion. Reason good, for the summit of my scientific ambition was to know what that lucky sice would bring me, how much that ruinous ace would sweep off--never to be balked by the narrow neck of the jar, or to let any one be cleverer at whipping the top.

But you

orca

ciendum,' a use belonging to later Latin. Madvig, § 432.

47. The recitation was weekly, but the father does not seem to have attended so often. Juv. 7. 165, 6.

sudans, from pleasure and excitement. 2. 53. Jahn, who refers, after Casaubon, to Statius' words in his funeral poem on his father Silv. 5. 3. 215 foll.

Qualis eras, Latios quoties ego carmine patres Mulcerem, felixque tui spectator adesses Muneris ! heu quali confusus gaudia fletu Vota piosque metus inter laetumque pudorem!'

48. iure: as a boy turning away from distasteful and injudicious teaching, fond of boyish amusements, and not able to appreciate the higher pursuits which would engage him afterwards. • Iure' forming a sentence by itself: ‘iure omnes' Hor. I S. 2. 46. So.merito,' I S. 6. 22.

id summum ... erat in voto. Esse in voto' or 'votis' means to be included in a person's prayers. Hoc erat in votis' Hor. 2 S. 6. 1. So venire in votum' 1 Ep. II. 5. Compare Cic. N. D. 1. 14 'Deus qui nunquam nobis occurrit, neque in precibus, neque in optatis, neque in votis.'

senio, 'the size,' (compare ternio,' "unio') stands, as Jahn and Heinr. think, for three sizes, tpis ég, the highest throw with the tesserae' (* Venus,' or 'iactus Venereus '). The highest throw with the * tali,' which were four in number, was when all four turned up differently (Lucian. Am. p. 415, Ov. A. A. 2. 204 foll., Tr. 2. 471 foll.). See Freund v. “alea.'

quid ... ferret quem fructum ferret.' Boys played games of hazard as

well as games of a more harmless sort. Puer .. ludere doctior Seu Graeco iubeas trocho, Seu malis vetita legibus alea' Hor. 3 Od. 24. 55 foll.

49. . Me quoque per talos Venerem quaerente secundos Semper damnosi subsiluere canes' Prop. 5. 8. 46, i.e. in the game with 'tali,' when all four fell alike, in the game with tesserae,' which is here meant, when all three were aces, tpels kuboi,

50. raderet, opp. to .ferret. Freund makes the

equivalent to the 'phimus' (Hor. 2 S. 7. 17) or box into which the dice were thrown, quoting Pompon. ap. Prisc. 3. p. 615, interim dum contemplor orcam taxillos (= talos) perdidi ;' but it does not appear that throwing the dice with accuracy into the box constituted any part of the skill of the game, and the Schol. seems right in supposing Persius to allude, as Pomponius doubtless did, to the game with nuts (* nuces ') called in Greek opóra (Pollux 9. 7. 103), which was frequently performed with 'tali' (ảotpájaro), the point being to throw them into a hole (Bópos), or, as here, into a jar, so as not to count those which fell outside. The narrowness of the neck (*collo angustae orcae ='collo angusto orcae') would of course increase the difficulty.

51. 'Et [erat in voto] ne quis callidior (esset).'

buxum, 'the top,' as in Virg. Aen. 7. 382 'volubile buxum,' which Persius probably imitates, as no other instance is quoted where the word is so applied.

52. curvos ='pravos,' apparently from Hor. 2 Ep. 2. 44 Scilicet ut possem curvo dignoscere rectum,' which is used, as here, 55

haud tibi inexpertum curvos deprendere mores, quaeque docet sapiens bracatis inlita Medis porticus, insomnis quibus et detonsa iuventus invigilat, siliquis et grandi pasta polenta: et tibi quae Samios diduxit littera ramos, surgentem dextro monstravit limite callem. stertis adhuc, laxumque caput conpage soluta oscitat hesternum, dissutis undique malis ? est aliquid quo tendis, et in quod dirigis arcum? an passim sequeris corvos testaque lutoque, securus quo pes ferat, atque ex tempore vivis ?

60

52. haut.

56. deduxit.

60. in quo.

as a synonyme for higher education-a young man's as opposed to a boy's. Persius nearly repeats himself 4. 11 'rectum discernis ubi inter Curva subit, vel cum fallit pede regula varo’ (referred to by Jahn). Comp. also 5. 38 'Adposita intortos extendit regula mores,' which Casaubon quotes.

53. We must either suppose a zeugma, borrowing cognoscere' or

some such word from deprendere,' or make the construction, 'neque inexperta sunt quae,' etc., just as 'scire' and 'neu quis' are two subjects connected with the same predicate summum erat in voto.'

sapiens .. porticus, like sapientem barbam' Hor. 2 S. 3. 35, 'eruditus pulvis' Cic. N. D. 2. 18. The porch is personified as in Hor. 2 S. 3. 44 porticus et grex Autumat.' The ποικίλη στοά, where Zeno and his followers used to resort, was adorned with paintings by Polygnotus, one of them representing the battle of Marathon. Laert. 7. 5; Paus. 1. 15, referred to by Casaubon. Whether the walls were themselves painted or merely hung with paintings is not clear, and not settled, as Jahn remarks, by the word inlita,' which cannot be pressed, as it is used improperly, and probably expresses some contempt.

bracatis. • Tela fugacis equi, et bracati militis arcus’ Prop. 4. 4. 17.

54. et detonsa was restored by Turnebus, whom Casaubon and later editors

follow, from most MSS. for the old reading “indetonsa.' The Stoics let their beard grow, but cut their hair close ( supercilio brevior coma' Juv. 2. 15, quoted by the Delph. ed. König also refers to Luc. Vit. Auct. 20, Hermot. 18)—a practice, as Jahn remarks, common to them with athletes, mourners, and misers (Theophr. Char. 10), opposition to the fashionable and luxurious habits of the κομώντες. .

55. invigilat, rather tautological after . insomnis.' Nec capiat somnos invigiletque malis. Ov, F.

4. 530. siliquis, 'pulse.' Hor. 2 Ep. I. 123, speaking of the poet, ‘vivit siliquis et pane secundo.'

polenta, árpita, pearl - barley,' a Greek, not a Roman, dish ('videtur tam puls ignota Graeciae fuisse, quam Italiae polentaPliny 18. 19. 8), mentioned as a simple article of diet by Attalus, Seneca's preceptor (Sen. Ep. 110. 18, quoted by Jahn) · Habemus aquam, habemus polentam : Iovi ipsi controversiam de felicitate faciamus:' called 'grandis,' as Virg. E. 5. 36 speaks of grandia hordea'- perhaps, as Casaubon thinks, with a further reference to the abundance of the meal and its fattening effects. ['Grandis 'was apparently applied specially to agricultural products: comp. the old

carmen’ quoted by Festus p. 93 (Müller) • Hiberno pulvere, verno luto grandia farra, camille, metes :' so Cato, 141. 2, has 'grandire virgulta.']

6

have had some practice in detecting deviations from the rule of right, and in the doctrines of the philosophic porch where the Medes are painted in their trowsers : doctrines which form the nightly study of close-shaven young men, dieted on pulse and vast messes of porridge: and the letter which spreads into Pythagorean ramifications has set your face towards the steep path which rises to the right. Snoring still ? your head dropped, with the neckjoints all loose, yawning off yesterday, with your jaws starting asunder from all points of the compass? Have you any goal? any mark at which you aim? or are you on a vague wild-goose chase armed with broken pots and mud, not caring where you go, and living by the rule of the moment ?

Lucan 5. 119.

56. The image of the two ways is as old as Hesiod, W. and D. 287–292 TIV μέντοι κακότητα και ιλαδόν έστιν έλέσθαι Ρηϊδίως: λείη μεν οδός, μάλα δ' εγγύθι ναίει. Της δ' άρετης ιδρώτα θεοι προπάροιθεν έθηκαν 'Αθάνατοι» μακράς δε και όρθιος οίμος έε αυτήν και τραχύς το πρώτον. επήν δ' εις άκρον ίκηται, Ρηϊδίη δη έπειτα πέλει, χαλεπή περ εούσα. Pythagoras improved on it by choosing the letter 4 (the older form of r or Y), hence called his letter (Anth. Lat. 1076. i Meyer), as its symbol, the stem standing for the unconscious life of infancy and childhood, the diverging branches for the alternative offered to the youth, virtue or vice. Persius again refers to this 5. 34 Cumque iter ambiguum est, et vitae nescius error diducit trepidas ramosa in compita mentes.'

Samius occurs Ov. F. 3. 153 as a synonyme of Pythagoras.

deduxit' most MSS., but diduxit is clearly right, as Jahn remarks. The two prefixes are constantly confounded, and the point is just one on which MSS. have no weight.

57. surgentem. Because the path of virtue was arduous, όρθιος οίμος, and hence represented by the straight limb of the 4 (dextro).

monstravit perhaps conveys similar notion, as if the letter itself by its form suggested the path to the right, that which went straight on. So limes would naturally mean a straight cut road, 'secto via limite quadret' Virg. G. 2. 278.

callis is properly a mountain path, as defined by Isid. Orig. 15. 16. 10 .callis est iter pecudum inter montes angustum et tritum.' Freund q. v. The general meaning of the two lines then is, “You have

arrived at the turning-point of life, and have been told which is the right way.'

58. stertis, v. 3, the effect of the crapula.'

laxum, 1. 98.

conpage, 'conpages humana labat' 59. Oscitat hesternum, like 'verum plorabit' 1. 90 ; .corpus onustum Hester. nis vitiis' Hor. 2 S. 2. 78.

undique, an intentional exaggeration for utraque parte.'

60. Casaubon compares Arist. Eth. N. Ι. Ι άρ' ούν και προς τον βίον ή γνώσις του τέλους μεγάλης έχει ροπήν, και καθάπερ τοξόται σκοπόν έχοντες, μάλλον αν τυγχάνουμεν του δέοντος; ;

in quod, though found only in a few MSS., is unquestionably the true reading, not ‘in quo.' The change, as Jahn remarks, is one which might justifiably have been introduced even if totally unsupported, being demanded by the language, and really countenanced by the MSS., as 'd' has evidently dropped out before .dirigis.'

61. passim, volucres huc illuc passim vagantes' Cic. de Div. 2. 38, 'at random.' Comp. Aesch. Ag. 394 SIWKEL Taís notaνον όρνιν, and the Greek proverb τα πετόμενα διώκειν. .

testaque lutoque, the first missiles that come to hand,' opp. to 'arcus.' Casaubon. • Sequi,' attempt to reach with: “teloque sequi, quem prendere cursu Non poterat ' Virg. Aen. 12. 775. Comp. 'pilo sequi' Tac. H. 4. 29, “ferro sequi’Ov. M. 6. 665.

62. securus, followed by a relative clause. Quid Tiridaten terreat, unice Securus’ Hor. i Od. 26. 6: compare also

a

« PredošláPokračovať »