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Title: The Amores, or Amours
       Literally Translated into English Prose, with Copious Notes

Author: Ovid

Translator: Henry T. Riley

Release Date: December 16, 2014 [EBook #47676]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


Produced by David Widger from page images generously
provided by the Internet Archive



By Ovid

Literally Translated into English Prose, with Copious Notes,
by Henry T. Riley




























































We who of late were five books 001 of Naso, are now but three: this work our author has preferred to the former one. Though it should 002 now be no pleasure to thee to read us; still, the labour will be less, the two being removed.


He says that he is compelled by Cupid to write of love instead of battles and that the Divinity insists on making each second Hexameter line into a Pentameter.

I was preparing to write of arms and impetuous warfare in serious numbers, 003 the subject-matter being suited to the measure. 004 The second verse was of equal measure with the first; but Cupid is said to have smiled, and to have abstracted one foot. 005 "Who, cruel boy, has given thee this right over my lines? We poets are the choir of the Muses, the Pierian maids, not thine. What if Venus were to seize the arms of the yellow-haired Minerva, and if the yellow-haired Minerva were to wave the lighted torches of Love? Who would approve of Ceres holding her reign in the woods on the mountain ridges, or of the fields being tilled under the control of the quivered Virgin? Who would arm Phoebus, graceful with his locks, with the sharp spear, while Mars is striking the Aonian lyre? Thy sway, O youth, is great, and far too potent; why, in thy ambition, dost thou attempt a new task? Is that which is everywhere, thine? Is Heliconian Tempe thine? Is even his own lyre hardly safe now for Phoebus? When the new page has made a good beginning in the first line, at that moment does he diminish my energies. 008 I have no subject fitted for these lighter numbers, whether youth, or girl with her flowing locks arranged."

Thus was I complaining; when, at once, his quiver loosened, 009 he selected the arrows made for my destruction; and he stoutly bent upon his knee the curving bow, and said, "Poet, receive a subject on which to sing." Ah wretched me! unerring arrows did that youth possess. I burn; and in my heart, hitherto disengaged, does Love hold sway. Henceforth, in six feet 010 let my work commence; in five let it close. Farewell, ye ruthless wars, together with your numbers. My Muse, 011 to eleven feet destined to be attuned, bind with the myrtle of the sea shore thy temples encircled with their yellow locks.


He says, that being taken captive by Love, he allows Cupid to lead him away in triumph.

Why shall I say it is, that my bed appears thus hard to me, and that my clothes rest not upon the couch? The night, too, long as it is, have I passed without sleep; and why do the weary bones of my restless body ache? But were I assailed by any flame, I think I should be sensible of it. Or does Love come unawares and cunningly attack in silent ambush? 'Tis so; his little arrows have pierced my heart; and cruel Love is tormenting the breast he has seized.

Am I to yield? Or by struggling against it, am I to increase this sudden flame? I must yield; the burden becomes light which is borne contentedly. I have seen the flames increase when agitated by waving the torch; and when no one shook it, I have seen them die away. The galled bulls suffer more blows while at first they refuse the yoke, than those whom experience of the plough avails. The horse which is unbroken bruises his mouth with the hard curb; the one that is acquainted with arms is less sensible of the bit. Love goads more sharply and much more cruelly those who struggle, than those who agree to endure his servitude. Lo! I confess it; I am thy new-made prey, O Cupid; I am extending my conquered hands for thy commands. No war between us is needed; I entreat for peace and for pardon; and no credit shall I be to thee, unarmed, conquered by thy arms. Bind thy locks with myrtle; yoke thy mother's doves; thy stepfather 014 himself will give a chariot which becomes thee. And in the chariot so given thee, thou shalt stand, and with thy skill shalt guide the birds so yoked 015, while the people shout "Io triumphe" 016 aloud. The captured youths and the captive fair shall be led in triumph; this procession shall be a splendid triumph for thee. I myself, a recent capture, shall bear my wound so lately made; and with the feelings of a captive shall I endure thy recent chains. Soundness of Understanding shall-be led along with hands bound behind his back, Shame as well, and whatever beside is an enemy to the camp of Love. All things shall stand in awe of thee: towards thee the throng, stretching forth its hands, shall sing "Io triumphe" with loud voice. Caresses shall be thy attendants, Error too, and Madness, a troop that ever follows on thy side. With these for thy soldiers, thou dost overcome both men and Gods; take away from thee these advantages, and thou wilt be helpless. From highest Olympus thy joyous mother will applaud thee in thy triumph, and will sprinkle her roses falling on thy face. While gems bedeck thy wings, and gems thy hair; in thy golden chariot shalt thou go, resplendent thyself with gold. 017

Then too, (if well I know thee) wilt thou influence not a few; then too, as thou passest by, wilt thou inflict many a wound. Thy arrows (even shouldst thou thyself desire it) cannot be at rest. A glowing flame ever injures by the propinquity of its heat. Just such was Bacchus when the Gangetic land 018 was subdued; thou art the burden of the birds; he was that of the tigers. Therefore, since I may be some portion of thy hallowed triumph, forbear, Conqueror, to expend thy strength on me. Look at the prospering arms of thy kinsman Cæsar; 019 with the same hand with which he conquers does he shield the conquered. 020


He entreats his mistress to return his affection, and shows that he is deserving of her favour.

I ask for what is just; let the fair who has so lately captivated me, either love me, or let her give me a cause why I should always love her. Alas! too much have I desired; only let her allow herself to be loved; and then Cytherea will have listened to my prayers so numerous. Accept one who will be your servant through lengthened years; accept one who knows how to love with constant attachment. If the great names of ancient ancestors do not recommend me, or if the Equestrian founder of my family 021 fails to do so; and if no field of mine is renewed by ploughs innumerable, and each of my parents 022 with frugal spirit limits my expenditure; still Phoebus and his nine companions and the discoverer of the vine may do so; and Love besides, who presents me as a gift to you; a fidelity, too that will yield to none, manners above reproach, ingenuousness without guile, and modesty ever able to blush.

A thousand damsels have no charms for me; I am no rover in affection; 023 you will for ever be my choice, if you do but believe me. May it prove my lot to live with you for years as many as the threads of the Sister Destinies shall grant me, and to die with you sorrowing for me. Grant me yourself as a delightful theme for my verse; worthy of their matter my lines will flow. Io, frightened by her horns, and she whom the adulterer deceived in the shape of the bird 024 of the stream have a name in song; she, too, who, borne over the seas upon the fictitious bull, held fast the bending horns with her virgin hand. We, too, together shall be celebrated throughout all the world; and my name shall ever be united with thy own.


He instructs his mistress what conduct to-observe in the presence of her husband at a feast to which he has been invited.

Y our husband is about to come to the same banquet 026 as ourselves: I pray that it may be the last meal 027 for this husband of yours. And am I then only as a guest to look upon the fair so much beloved? And shall there be another, to take pleasure in being touched by you? And will you, conveniently placed below, be keeping warm the bosom of another? 028 And shall he, when he pleases, be placing his hand upon your neck? Cease to be surprised that the beauteous damsel of Atrax 029 excited the two-formed men to combat when the wine was placed on table. No wood is my home, and my limbs adhere not to those of a horse; yet I seem to be hardly able to withhold my hands from you. Learn, however, what must be done by you; and do not give my injunctions to be borne away by the Eastern gales, nor on the warm winds of the South.

Come before your husband; and yet, I do not see what can be done, if you do come first; but still, do come first. 031 When he presses the couch, with modest air you will be going as his companion, to recline by him; then secretly touch my foot. 032 Keep your eye on me, and my nods and the expression of my features; apprehend my secret signs, 033 and yourself return them. Without utterance will I give expression to words by my eyebrows; 034 you shall read words traced by my fingers, words traced in the wine. 035 When the delights of our dalliance recur to your thoughts, press your blooming cheeks 036 with your beauteous finger. If there shall be anything, of which you may be making complaint about me silently in your mind, let your delicate hand reach from the extremity of your ear. When, my life, I shall either do or say aught which shall give you delight, let your ring be continually twisted on your fingers. 037 Take hold of the table with your hand, in the way in which those who are in prayer 038 take hold of the altar, when you shall be wishing many an evil for your husband, who so well deserves it. The cup which he has mixed for you, if you are discreet, 039 bid him drink himself; then, in a low voice, do you ask the servant 041 for what wine you wish. I will at once take the cup which you have put down; 042 and where you have sipped, on that side will I drink. If, perchance, he shall give you any morsels, of which he has tasted beforehand, reject them thus touched by his mouth. 043 And do not allow him to press your neck, by putting his arms around it; nor recline your gentle head on his unsightly breast. 044 Let not your bosom, or your breasts so close at hand, 045 admit his fingers; and especially allow him to give you no kisses. If you do give him any kisses, I shall be discovered to be your lover, and I shall say, "Those are my own," and shall be laying hands upon him.

Still, this I shall be able to see; but what the clothing carefully conceals, the same will be a cause for me of apprehension full of doubts. Touch not his thigh with yours, and cross not legs with him, and do not unite your delicate foot with his uncouth leg. To my misery, I am apprehensive of many a thing, because many a thing have I done in my wantonness; and I myself am tormented, through fear of my own precedent.

Oft by joining hands beneath the cloth, 048 have my mistress and I forestalled our hurried delights. This, I am sure, you will not do for him; but that you may not even be supposed to do so, take away the conscious covering 049 from your bosom. Bid your husband drink incessantly, but let there be no kisses with your entreaties; and while he is drinking, if you can, add wine by stealth. 050 If he shall be soundly laid asleep with dozing and wine, circumstances and opportunity will give us fitting counsel. When you shall rise to go home, we all will rise as well; and remember that you walk in the middle rank of the throng. In that rank you will either find me, or be found by me; and whatever part of me you can there touch, mind and touch.

Ah wretched me! I have given advice to be good for but a few hours; then, at the bidding of night, I am separated from my mistress. At night her husband will lock her in; I, sad with my gushing tears, will follow her as far as I may, even to her obdurate door. And now will he be snatching a kiss; and now not kisses only will he snatch; you will be compelled to grant him that, which by stealth you grant to me. But grant him this (you can do so) with a bad grace, and like one acting by compulsion; let no caresses be heard; and let Venus prove inauspicious. If my wishes avail, I trust, too, that he will find no satisfaction therein; but if otherwise, still at least let it have no delights for you. But, however, whatever luck may attend upon the night, assure me in positive language to-morrow, that you did not dally with him.


The beauties of Corinna.

Twas summer time, 051 and the day had passed the hour of noon; when I threw my limbs to be refreshed on the middle of the couch. A part of the window 053 was thrown open, the other part shut; the light was such as the woods are wont to have; just as the twilight glimmers, when Phoebus is retreating; or as when the night has gone, and still the day is not risen. Such light should be given to the bashful fair, in which coy modesty may hope to have concealment.

Behold! Corinna 054 came, clothed in a tunic 055 hanging loose, her flowing hair 056 covering her white neck.

Beauteous Semiramis 057 is said to have entered her chamber, and Lais, 058 beloved by many a hero. I drew aside the tunic; in its thinness 059 it was but a small impediment; still, to be covered with the tunic did she strive; and, as she struggled as though she was not desirous to conquer, without difficulty was she overcome, through betrayal of herself. When, her clothing laid aside, she stood before my eyes, throughout her whole body nowhere was there a blemish. What shoulders, what arms I both saw and touched! The contour of her breast, how formed was it to be pressed! How smooth her stomach beneath her faultless bosom! How full and how beauteous her sides! How plump with youthfulness the thigh! But why enlarge on every point? Nothing did I behold not worthy of praise; and I pressed her person even to my own.

The rest, who knows not? Wearied, we both reclined. May such a midday often prove my lot.


He entreats the porter to open to him the door of his mistress's house.

P orter, fastened (and how unworthily!) with the cruel fetter, 060 throw open the stubborn door with its turning hinge. What I ask, is but a trifle; let the door, half-opened, admit me sideways with its narrow passage. Protracted Love has made my body thin for such an emergency, and by diminishing my bulk, has rendered my limbs quite supple.'Tis he who shows me how to go softly amid the watches of the keepers; 062 'tis he directs my feet that meet no harm. But, at one time, I used to be afraid of the night and imaginary ghosts; and I used to be surprised if any one was about to go in the dark: Cupid, with his graceful mother, laughed, so that I could hear him, and he softly said, "Thou too wilt become bold." Without delay, love came upon me; then, I feared not spectres that flit by night, 063 or hands uplifted for my destruction.

I only fear you, thus too tardy; you alone do I court; you hold the lightning by which you can effect my destruction. Look (and that you may see, loosen the obdurate bars) how the door has been made wet with my tears. At all events, 'twas I, who, when, your garment laid aside, you stood ready for the whip, 064 spoke in your behalf to your mistress as you were trembling. Does then, (O shocking thought!) the credit which once prevailed in your behalf, now fail to prevail in my own favour? Give a return for my kindness; you may now be grateful. As you wish, 065 the hours of the night pass on; 066 from the door-post 067 strike away the bar. Strike it away then may you one day be liberated from your long fetters and may the water of the slave 068 be not for ever drunk of by you. Hard-hearted porter! you hear me, as I implore in vain; the door, supported by its hard oaken posts, is still unmoved. Let the protection of a closed gate be of value to cities when besieged; but why, in the midst of peace are you dreading warfare? What would you do to an enemy, who thus shut out the lover? The hours of the night pass on; from the door-post strike away the bar.

I am not come attended with soldiers and with arms; I should be alone, if ruthless Love were not here. Him, even if I should desire it, I can never send away; first should I be even severed from my limbs. Love then, and a little wine about my temples, 069 are with me, and the chaplet falling from off my anointed hair. Who is to dread arms such as these? Who may not go out to face them? The hours of the night pass on; from the door-post strike away the bar.

Are you delaying? or does sleep (who but ill befriends the lover) give to the winds my words, as they are repelled from your ear? But, I remember, when formerly I used to avoid you, you were awake, with the stars of the midnight. Perhaps, too, your own mistress is now asleep with you; alas! how much superior then is your fate to my own! And since 'tis so, pass on to me, ye cruel chains. The hours of the night pass on; from the door-post strike away the bar.

Am I mistaken? Or did the door-posts creak with the turning hinge, and did the shaken door give the jarring signal? Yes, I am mistaken; the door was shaken by the boisterous wind. Ah me! how far away has that gust borne my hopes! Boreas, if well thou dost keep in mind the ravished Orithyia, come hither, and with thy blast beat open this relentless door. 'Tis silence throughout all the City; damp with the glassy dew, the hours of the night pass on; from the door-post strike away the bar.

Otherwise I, myself, 073 now better prepared than you, with my sword, and with the fire which I am holding in my torch, 074 will scale this arrogant abode. Night, and lore, and wine, 075 are persuasive of no moderation; the first is without shame, Bacchus and Love are without fear.

I have expended every method; neither by entreaties nor by threats have I moved you, O man, even more deaf yourself than your door. It becomes you not to watch the threshold of the beauteous fair; of the anxieties of the prison, 076 are you more deserving. And now Lucifer is moving his wheels beset with rime; and the bird is arousing 077 wretched mortals to their work. But, chaplet taken from my locks joyous no longer, be you the livelong night upon this obdurate threshold. You, when in the morning she shall see you thus exposed, will be a witness of my time thus thrown away. Porter, whatever your disposition, good bye, and one day experience the pangs of him who is now departing; sluggish one, and worthless in not admitting the lover, fare you well. And you, ye cruel door-posts, with your stubborn threshold; and you, ye doors, equally slaves, 078 hard-hearted blocks of wood, farewell.


He has beaten his mistress, and endeavours to regain her favour.

Put my hands in manacles (they are deserving of chains), if any friend of mine is present, until all my frenzy has departed. For frenzy has raised my rash arms against my mistress; hurt by my frantic hand, the fair is weeping. In such case could I have done an injury even to my dear parents, or have given unmerciful blows to even the hallowed Gods. Why; did not Ajax, too, 080 the owner of the sevenfold shield, slaughter the flocks that he had caught along the extended plains? And did Orestes, the guilty avenger of his father, the punisher of his mother, dare to ask for weapons against the mystic Goddesses? 081

And could I then tear her tresses so well arranged; and were not her displaced locks unbecoming to my mistress? Even thus was she beauteous; in such guise they say that the daughter of Schoeneus 082 pursued the wild beasts of Mænalus with her bow. 'Twere more fitting for her face to be pale from the impress of kisses, and for her neck to bear the marks of the toying teeth.

In such guise did the Cretan damsel 083 weep, that the South winds, in their headlong flight, had borne away both the promises and the sails of the forsworn Theseus. Thus, too, chaste Minerva, did Cassandra 084 fall in thy temple, except that her locks were bound with the fillet.

Who did not say to me, "You madman!" who did not say to me, "You barbarian!" She herself said not a word; her tongue was restrained by timid apprehensions. But still her silent features pronounced my censure; by her tears and by her silent lips did she convict me.

First could I wish that my arms had fallen from off my shoulders; to better purpose could I have parted with a portion of myself. To my own disadvantage had I the strength of a madman; and for my own punishment did I stoutly exert my strength. What do I want with you, ye ministers of death and criminality? Impious hands, submit to the chains, your due. Should I not have been punished had I struck the humblest Roman 085 of the multitude? And shall I have a greater privilege against my mistress? The son of Tydeus has left the worst instance of crime: he was the first to strike a Goddess, 086 I, the second. But less guilty was he; by me, she, whom I asserted to be loved by me, was injured; against an enemy the son of Tydeus was infuriate.

Come now, conqueror, prepare your boastful triumphs; bind your locks with laurel, and pay your vows to Jove, and let the multitude, the train, that escorts your chariot, shout aloud, "Io triumphe! by this valiant man has the fair been conquered!" Let the captive, in her sadness, go before with dishevelled locks, pale all over, if her hurt cheeks 087 may allow.

In short, if, after the manner of a swelling torrent, I was impelled, and if impetuous anger did make me its prey; would it not have been enough to have shouted aloud at the trembling girl, and not to have thundered out my threats far too severe? Or else, to my own disgrace, to have torn her tunic from its upper edge down to the middle? Her girdle should, at the middle 089 have come to its aid. But now, in the hardness of my heart, I could dare, seizing her hair on her forehead, to mark her free-born cheeks 090 with my nails. There she stood, amazed, with her features pale and bloodless, just as the marble is cut in the Parian mountains. 091 I saw her fainting limbs, and her palpitating members; just as when the breeze waves the foliage of the poplars; just as the slender reed quivers with the gentle Zephyr; or, as when the surface of the waves is skimmed by the warm South wind. Her tears, too, so long repressed, flowed down her face, just as the water flows from the snow when heaped up.

Then, for the first time, did I begin to be sensible that I was guilty; the tears which she was shedding were as my own blood. Yet, thrice was I ready, suppliantly to throw myself before her feet; thrice did she repel my dreaded hands. But, dearest, do not you hesitate, (for revenge will lessen your grief) at once to attack my face with your nails. Spare not my eyes, nor yet my hair; let anger nerve your hands, weak though they may be.

And that tokens so shocking of my criminality may no longer exist, put your locks, arranged anew, in their proper order. 092


He curses a certain procuress, whom he overhears instructing his mistress in the arts of a courtesan.

There is a certain—(whoever wishes to make acquaintance with a procuress, let him listen.)—There is a certain old hag, Dipsas by name. From fact does she derive 094 her name; never in a sober state does she behold the mother of the swarthy Memnon with her horses of roseate hue. She knows well the magic arts, and the charms of Ææa, 095 and by her skill she turns back to its source 096 the flowing stream. She knows right well what the herbs, what the thrums impelled around the whirling spinning-wheel, 097 and what the venomous exudation 098 from the prurient mare can effect. When she wills it, the clouds are overspread throughout all the sky; when she wills it, the day is bright with a clear atmosphere.

I have beheld (if I may be believed) the stars dripping with blood: the face of the moon was empurpled 099 with gore. I believe that she, transformed, 101 was flying amid the shades of night, and that her hag's carcase was covered with feathers. This I believe, and such is the report. A double pupil, too, 102 sparkles in her eyes, and light proceeds from a twofold eyeball. Forth from the ancient sepulchres she calls our great grandsires, and their grandsires 103 as well; and with her long incantations she cleaves the solid ground. She has made it her occupation to violate the chaste bed; and besides, her tongue is not "wanting in guilty advocacy. Chance made me the witness of her language; in such words was she giving her advice; the twofold doors 105 concealed me.

"You understand, my life, how greatly you yesterday pleased a wealthy young man; for he stopped short, and stood gazing for some time on your face. And whom do you not please? Your beauty is inferior to no one's. But woe is me! your person has not a fitting dress. I only wish you were as well off, as you are distinguished for beauty; if you became rich, I should not be poor. The adverse star of Mars in opposition 106 was unfortunate for you; Mars has gone; now Venus is befriending you with her planet. See now how favourable she is on her approach; a rich lover is sighing for you, and he makes it his care 107 what are your requirements. He has good looks, too, that may compare with your own; if he did not wish to have you at a price, he were worthy himself to be purchased."

On this the damsel blushed: 108 "Blushing," said the hag, "suits a faircomplexion indeed; but if you only pretend it, 'tis an advantage; if real, it is wont to be injurious. When, your eyes cast down, 109 you are looking full upon your bosom, each man must only be looked at in the proportion in which he offers. Possibly the sluttish Sabine females, 111 when Tati us was king, were unwilling to be accommodating to more men than one. Now-a-days, Mars employs the bravery of our men in foreign warfare; 112 but Venus holds sway in the City of her own Æneas. Enjoy yourselves, my pretty ones; she is chaste, whom nobody has courted; or else, if coyness does not prevent her, she herself is the wooer. Dispel these frowns 113 as well, which you are carrying upon your lofty brow; with those frowns will numerous failings be removed. Penelope used to try 114 the strength of the young men upon the bow; the bow that tested the strength of their sides, was made of horn. Age glides stealthily on, and beguiles us as it flies; just as the swift river glides onward with its flowing waters. Brass grows bright by use; good clothes require to be worn; uninhabited buildings grow white with nasty mould. Unless you entertain lovers, beauty soon waxes old, with no one to enjoy it; and even one or two lovers are not sufficiently profitable. From many of them, gain is more sure, and not so difficult to be got. An abundant prey falls to the hoary wolves out of a whole flock.

"See now! what does this poet of yours make you a present of besides his last verses? You will read many thousands of them by this new lover. The God himself of poets, graceful in his mantle 116 adorned with gold, strikes the harmonious strings of the gilded lyre. He that shall make you presents, let him be to you greater than great Homer; believe me, it is a noble thing to give. And, if there shall be any one redeemed at a price for his person 117, do not you despise him; the fault of having the foot rubbed with chalk 118 is a mere trifle. Neither let the old-fashioned wax busts about the halls 119 take you in; pack off with your forefathers, you needy lover. Nay more, should 120 one, because he is good-looking, ask for a night without a present; why, let him first solicit his own admirer for something to present to you.

"Be less exacting of presents, while you are laying your nets, for fear lest they should escape you: once caught, tease them at your own pleasure. Pretended affection, too, is not a bad thing; let him fancy he is loved; but have you a care that this affection is not all for nothing. Often refuse your favours; sometimes pretend a head-ache; and sometimes there will be Isis 121 to afford a pretext. But soon admit him again; that he may acquire no habits of endurance, and that his love, so often repulsed, may not begin to flag. Let your door be deaf to him who entreats, open to him who brings. Let the lover that is admitted, hear the remarks of him who is excluded. And, as though you were the first injured, sometimes get in a passion with him when injured by you. His censure, when counterbalanced by your censure, 127 may wear away. But do you never afford a long duration for anger; prolonged anger frequently produces hatred. Moreover, let your eyes learn, at discretion, to shed tears; and let this cause or that cause your cheeks to be wet. And do not, if you deceive any one, hesitate to be guilty of perjury; Venus lends but a deaf hearing 128 to deceived lovers.

"Let a male servant and a crafty handmaid 129 be trained up to their parts; who may instruct him what may be conveniently purchased for you. And let them ask but little for themselves; if they ask a little of many, 130 very soon, great will be the heap from the gleanings. 131 Let your sister, and your mother, and your nurse as well, fleece your admirer. A booty is soon made, that is sought by many hands. When occasions for asking for presents shall fail you, call attention with a cake 132 to your birthday Take care that no one loves you in security, without a rival; love is not very lasting if you remove all rivalry. Let him perceive the traces of another person on the couch; all your neck, too, discoloured by the marks of toying. Especially let him see the presents, which another has sent. If he gives you nothing, the Sacred Street 133 must be talked about. When you have received many things, but yet he has not given you every thing, be continually asking him to lend you something, for you never to return. Let your tongue aid you, and let it conceal your thoughts; 134 caress him, and prove his ruin. 135 Beneath the luscious honey cursed poisons lie concealed. If you observe these precepts, tried by me throughout a long experience; and if the winds and the breezes do not bear away my words; often will you bless me while I live; often will you pray, when I am dead, that in quietude my bones may repose.".

She was in the middle of her speech, when my shadow betrayed me; but my hands with difficulty refrained from tearing her grey scanty locks, and her eyes bleared with wine, and her wrinkled cheeks. May the Gods grant you both no home, 136 and a needy old age; prolonged winters as well, and everlasting thirst.


He tells Atticus that like the soldier, the lover ought to be on his guard and that Love is a species of warfare.

Every lover is a soldier, and Cupid has a camp of his own; believe me, Atticus, 138 every lover is a soldier. The age which is fitted for war, is suited to love as well. For an old man to be a soldier, is shocking; amorousness in an old man is shocking. The years which 139 generals require in the valiant soldier, the same does the charming fair require in her husband. Both soldier and lover pass sleepless nights; both rest upon the ground. The one watches at the door of his mistress; but the other at that of his general. 140 Long marches are the duty of the soldier; send the fair far away, and the lover will boldly follow her, without a limit to his endurance. Over opposing mountains will he go, and rivers swollen with rains; the accumulating snows will he pace.

About to plough the waves, he will not reproach the stormy East winds; nor will he watch for Constellations favourable for scudding over the waves. Who, except either the soldier or the lover, will submit to both the chill of the night, and the snows mingled with the heavy showers? The one is sent as a spy against the hostile foe; the other keeps his eye on his rival, as though upon an enemy. The one lays siege to stubborn cities, the other to the threshold of his obdurate mistress: the one bursts open gates, and the other, doors. 142 Full oft has it answered to attack the enemy when buried in sleep; and to slaughter an unarmed multitude with armed hand. Thus did the fierce troops of the Thracian Rhesus 143 fall; and you, captured steeds, forsook your lord. Full oft do lovers take advantage of the sleep of husbands, and brandish their arms against the slumbering foe. To escape the troops of the sentinels, and the bands of the patrol, is the part both of the soldier, and of the lover always in misery. Mars is wayward, and Venus is uncertain; both the conquered rise again, and those fall whom you would say could never possibly be prostrate.

Whoever, then, has pronounced Love mere slothfulness, let him cease to love: 144 to the discerning mind does Love belong. The mighty Achilles is inflamed by the captive Briseis. Trojans, while you may, destroy the Argive resources. Hector used to go to battle fresh from the embraces of Andromache; and it was his wife who placed his helmet on his head. The son of Atreus, the first of all the chiefs, on beholding the daughter of Priam, is said to have been smitten with the dishevelled locks of the raving prophetess. 146 Mars, too, when caught, was sensible of the chains wrought at the forge; 147 there was no story better known than his, in all the heavens.

I myself was of slothful habit, and born for a lazy inactivity; 148 the couch and the shade 149 had enervated my mind. Attentions to the charming fair gave a fillip to me, in my indolence; and Love commanded me to serve 150 in his camp. Hence it is that thou seest me active, and waging the warfare by night. Let him who wishes not to become slothful, fall in love.


He tells his mistress that she ought not to require presents as a return for her love.

Such as she, who, borne away from the Eurotas, 151 in the Phrygian ships, was the cause of warfare to her two husbands; such as Leda was, whom her crafty paramour, concealed in his white feathers, deceived under the form of a fictitious bird; such as Amymone 152 used to wander in the parched fields of Argos, when the urn was pressing the locks on the top of her head; such were you; and I was in dread of both the eagle and the bull with respect to you, and whatever form besides Love has created of the mighty Jove.

Now, all fears are gone, and the disease of my mind is cured; and now no longer does that form of yours rivet my eyes. Do you inquire why I am changed? It is, because you require presents. This reason does not allow of your pleasing me. So long as you were disinterested, I was in love with your mind together with your person; now, in my estimation your appearance is affected by this blemish on your disposition. Love is both a child and naked; he has years without sordidness, and he wears no clothes, that he may be without concealment. Why do you require the son of Venus to be prostituted at a price? He has no fold in his dress, 153 in which to conceal that price. Neither Venus is suited for cruel arms, nor yet the son of Venus; it befits not such unwarlike Divinities to serve for pay. The courtesan stands for hire to any one at a certain price; and with her submissive body, she seeks for wretched pelf. Still, she curses the tyranny of the avaricious procurer; 154 and she does by compulsion 155 what you are doing of your own free will.

Take, as an example, the cattle, devoid of reason; it were a shocking thing for there to be a finer feeling in the brutes. The mare asks no gift of the horse, nor the cow of the bull; the ram does not woo the ewe, induced by presents. Woman alone takes pleasure in spoils torn from the man; she alone lets out her nights; alone is she on sale, to be hired at a price. She sells, too, joys that delight them both, and which both covet; and she makes it a matter of pay, at what price she herself is to be gratified. Those joys, which are so equally sweet to both, why does the one sell, and why the other buy them? Why must that delight prove a loss to me, to you a gain, for which the female and the male combine with kindred impulse? Witnesses hired dishonestly, 156 sell their perjuries; the chest 157 of the commissioned judge 158 is disgracefully open for the bribe.

'Tis a dishonourable thing to defend the wretched criminals with a tongue that is purchased; 159 'tis a disgrace for a tribunal to make great acquisitions. 'Tis a disgrace for a woman to increase her patrimonial possessions by the profits of her embraces, and to prostitute her beauty for lucre. Thanks are justly due for things obtained without purchase; there are no thanks for an intercourse disgracefully bartered. He who hires, 160 pays all his due; the price once paid, he no longer remains a debtor for your acquiescence. Cease, ye beauties, to bargain for pay for your favours. Sordid gains bring no good results. It was not worth her while to bargain for the Sabine bracelets, 161 in order that the arms should crush the head of the sacred maiden. The son pierced 163 with the sword those entrails from which he had sprung, and a simple necklace 164 was the cause of the punishment.

But yet it is not unbecoming for a present to be asked of the wealthy man; he has something to give to her who does ask for a present. Pluck the grapes that hang from the loaded vines; let the fruitful soil of Alcinous 165 afford the apples. Let the needy man proffer duty, zeal, and fidelity; what each one possesses, let him bestow it all upon his mistress. My endowments, too, are in my lines to shig the praises of those fair who deserve them; she, whom I choose, becomes celebrated through my skill. Vestments will rend, gems and gold will spoil; the fame which poesy confers is everlasting.

Still I do not detest giving and revolt at it, but at being asked for a price. Cease to demand it, and I will give you that which I refuse you while you ask.


He begs Nape to deliver his letter to her mistress, and commences by praising her neatness and dexterity, and the interest she has hitherto manifested in his behalf.

Nape, skilled at binding the straggling locks 166 and arranging them in order, and not deserving to be reckoned 167 among the female slaves; known, too, by experience to be successful in the contrivances of the stealthy night, and clever in giving the signals; 168 you who have so oft entreated Corinna, when hesitating, to come to me; who have been found so often faithful by me in my difficulties; take and carry these tablets, 169 so well-filled, 170 this morning to your mistress; and by your diligence dispel all impeding delay. Neither veins of flint, nor hard iron is in your breast, nor have you a simplicity greater than that of your clever class. There is no doubt that you, too, have experienced the bow of Cupid; in my behalf defend the banner of your service. If Corinna asks what I am doing, you will say that I am living in expectation of the night. The wax inscribed with my persuasive hand is carrying the rest.

While I am speaking, time is flying; opportunely give her my tablets, when she is at leisure; but still, make her read them at once. I bid you watch her eyes and her forehead as she reads; from the silent features we may know the future. And be there no delay; when she has read them through, request her to write a long answer; 172 I hate it, when the bleached wax is empty, with a margin on every side. Let her write the lines close as they run, and let the letters traced in the extreme margin long detain my eyes.

But what need is there for wearying her fingers with holding the pen? 175 Let the whole of her letter contain this one word, "Come." Then, I should not delay to crown my victorious tablets with laurel, nor to place them in the midst of the temple of Venus. Beneath them I would inscribe "Naso consecrates these faithful servants of his to Venus; but lately, you were pieces of worthless maple." 176


He curses the tablets which he has sent, because his mistress has written an answer on them, in which she refuses to grant his request.

Lament my misfortune; my tablets have returned to me with sad intelligence. Her unlucky letter announces that she cannot be seen to-day. There is something in omens; just now, when she was preparing to go, Napè stopped short, having struck her foot 178 against the threshold. When sent out of doors another time, remember to pass the threshold more carefully, and like a sober woman lift your foot high enough.

Away with you; obdurate tablets, fatal bits of board; and you wax, as well, crammed with the lines of denial. I doubt the Corsican bee 180 has sent you collected from the blossom of the tall hemlock, beneath its abominable honey.

Besides, you were red, as though you had been thoroughly dyed in vermilion; 181 such a colour is exactly that of blood. Useless bits of board, thrown out in the street, there may you lie; and may the weight of the wheel crush you, as it passes along. I could even prove that he who formed you to shape from the tree, had not the hands of innocence. That tree surely has afforded a gibbet for some wretched neck, and has supplied the dreadful crosses 182 for the executioner. It has given a disgusting shelter to the screeching owls; in its branches it has borne the eggs of the vulture and of the screech-owl. 183 In my madness, have I entrusted my courtship to these, and have I given soft words to be thus carried to my mistress?

These tablets would more becomingly hold the prosy summons, 184 which some judge 185 pronounces, with his sour face.


He entreats the morning not to hasten on with its usual speed.

Now over the Ocean does she come from her aged husband Tithonus, who, with her yellow locks, brings on the day with her frosty chariot. Whither, Aurora, art thou hastening? Stay; and then may the yearly bird, with its wonted death, honour the shades 189 of thy Memnon, its parent. Now do I delight to recline in the soft arms of my mistress; now, if ever, is she deliciously united to my side. Now, too, slumbers are sound, and now the moisture is cooling the birds, too, are sweetly waronng with their little throats. Whither art thou hastening, hated by the men, detested by the fair? Check thy dewy reins with thy rosy hand. 190

Before thy rising, the sailor better observes his Constellations; and he wanders not in ignorance, in the midst of the waves. On thy approach, the wayfarer arises, weary though he be; the soldier lays upon his arms the hands used to bear them. Thou art the first to look upon the tillers of the fields laden with the two-pronged fork; thou art the first to summon the lagging oxen to the crooked yoke. 'Tis thou who dost deprive boys of their sleep, and dost hand them over to their masters; 192, that their tender hands may suffer the cruel stripes. 193 'Tis thou, too, who dost send the man before the vestibule of the attorney, 194 when about to become bail; 195 that he may submit to the great risks of a single word.

Thou art no source of pleasure to the pleader, 198 nor yet to the counsel; for fresh combats each is forced to rise. Thou, when the labours of the females might have had a pause, dost recal the hand of the worker in wool to its task.

All this I could endure; but who could allow the fair to arise thus early, except the man who has no mistress of his own? How often have I wished that night would not make way for thee; and that the stars when put to flight would not fly from thy countenance. Many a time have I wished that either the wind would break thy chariot to pieces, or that thy steed would fall, overtaken by some dense cloud. Remorseless one, whither dost thou hasten? Inasmuch as thy son was black, such was the colour of his mother's heart. What if 199 she had not once burned with passion for Cephalus? Or does she fancy that her escapade was not known? I only wish it was allowed Tithonus to tell of thee; there would not be a more coarse tale in all the heavens. While thou art avoiding him, because he is chilled by length of years, thou dost rise early in the morning from the bed of the old man to thy odious chariot. But if thou wast only holding some Cephalus embraced in thy arms; then wouldst thou be crying out, "Run slowly on, ye horses of the night."

Why should I be punished in my affections, if thy husband does decay through length of years? Wast thou married to the old fellow by my contrivance? See how many hours of sleep the Moon gave 201 to the youth beloved by her; and yet her beauty is not inferior to thine. The parent of the Gods himself, that he might not see thee so often, joined two nights together 202 for the attainment of his desires.

I had finished my reproaches; you might be sure she heard them; for she blushed'. However, no later than usual did the day arise.


His mistress having been in the habit of dyeing her hair with noxious compositions, she has nearly lost it, becoming almost bald. He reminds her of his former advice, and entreats her to abstain from the practice, on which there may be a chance of her recovering it.

I always used to say; "Do leave off doctoring your hair." 203 And now you have no hair left, that you can be dyeing. But, if you had let it alone, what was more plenteous than it? It used to reach down your sides, so far as ever 204 they extend. And besides: Was it not so fine, that you were afraid to dress 205 it; just like the veils 206 which the swarthy Seres use? Or like the thread which the spider draws out with her slender legs, when she fastens her light work beneath the neglected beam? And yet its colour was not black, nor yet was it golden, but though it was neither, it was a mixture of them both. A colour, such as the tall cedar has in the moist vallies of craggy Ida, when its bark is stript off.

Besides, it was quite tractable, and falling into a thousand ringlets; and it was the cause of no trouble to you. Neither the bodkin, 208 nor the tooth of the comb ever tore it; your tire woman always had a whole skin. Many a time was it dressed before my eyes; and yet, never did the bodkin 210 seized make wounds in her arms. Many a time too, in the morning, her locks not yet arranged, was she lying on the purple couch, with her face half upturned. Then even, unadorned, was she beauteous; as when the Thracian Bacchanal, in her weariness, throws herself carelessly upon the green grass. Still, fine as it was, and just like down, what evils, alas! did her tortured hair endure! How patiently did it submit itself to the iron and the fire; 211 that the curls might become crisp with their twisting circlets. "'Tis a shame," I used to cry, "'tis a shame, to be burning that hair; naturally it is becoming; do, cruel one, be merciful to your own head. Away with all violence from it; it is not hair that deserves to be scorched; the very locks instruct 212 the bodkins when applied."

Those beauteous locks are gone; which Apollo might have longed for, and which Bacchus might have wished to be on his own head. With them I might compare those, which naked Dione is painted 213 as once having held up with her dripping hand. Why are you complaining that hair so badly treated is gone? Why, silly girl, do you lay down the mirror 214 with disconsolate hand? You are not seen to advantage by yourself with eyes accustomed to your former self. For you to please, you ought to be forgetful of your former self.

No enchanted herbs of a rival 215 have done you this injury; no treacherous hag has been washing you with Itæmonian water. The effects, too, of no disease have injured you; (far away be all bad omens; 216) nor has an envious tongue thinned your abundant locks;'twas your own self who gave the prepared poison to your head. Now Germany will be sending 217 for you her captured locks; by the favour of a conquered race you will be adorned. Ah! how many a time will you have to blush, as any one admires your hair; and then you will say, "Now I am receiving praise for a bought commodity! In place of myself, he is now bepraising some Sygambrian girl 218 unknown to me; still, I remember the time when that glory was my own."

Wretch that I am! with difficulty does she restrain her tears; and she covers her face with her hand, having her delicate cheeks suffused with blushes. She is venturing to look at her former locks, placed in her bosom; a treasure, alas! not fitted for that spot. 219

Calm your feelings with your features; the loss may still be repaired. Before long, you will become beauteous with your natural hair.


He tells the envious that the fame of Poets is immortal, and that theirs is not a life devoted to idleness.

Why, gnawing Envy, dost thou blame me for years of slothfulness; and why dost thou call poesy the employment of an idle mind? Thou sayest that I do not, after the manner of my ancestors, while vigorous years allow me, seek the prizes of warfare covered with dust; that I do not make myself acquainted with the prosy law, and that I have not let my tongue for hire 221 in the disagreeable courts of justice.

The pursuits of which thou art speaking, are perishable; by me, everlasting fame is sought; that to all time I may be celebrated throughout the whole world. The Mæonian bard 222 will live, so long as Tenedos and Ida 223 shall stand; so long as Simois shall roll down to the sea his rapid waves. The Ascræan, too, 224 will live, so long as the grape shall swell with its juices; 225 so long as the corn shall fall, reaped by the curving sickle. The son of Battus 226 will to all time be sung throughout the whole world; although he is not powerful in genius, in his skill he shows his might. No mischance will ever come to the tragic buskin 227 of Sophocles; with the Sun and Moon Aratus 228 will ever exist. So long as the deceitful slave, 229 the harsh father, the roguish procuress, and the cozening courtesan shall endure, Menander will exist. Ennius, 230 without any art, and Accius, 231 with his spirited language, have a name that will perish with no lapse of time.

What age is to be forgetful of Varro, 232 and the first ship that sailed, and of the golden fleece sought by the chief, the son of Æson? Then will the verses perish of the sublime Lucretius, 233 when the same day shall give the world to destruction. Tityrus, 234 and the harvests, and the arms of Æneas, will be read of, so long as thou, Rome, 235 shalt be the ruler of the conquered earth. So long as the flames and the bow shall be the arms of Cupid, thy numbers, polished Tibullus, 236 will be repeated. Gallus 237 will be known by the West, and Gallus known by the East, 238 and with Gallus will his Lycoris be known. Though flint-stones, then, and though the share of the enduring plough perish by lapse of time, yet poetry is exempt from death. Let monarchs and the triumphs of monarchs yield to poesy, and let the wealthy shores of the golden Tagus 239 yield.

Let the vulgar throng admire worthless things; let the yellow-haired Apollo supply for me cups filled from the Castalian stream; let me bear, too, on my locks the myrtle that dreads the cold; and let me often be read by the anxious lover. Envy feeds upon the living; after death it is at rest, when his own reward protects each according to his merit. Still then, when the closing fire 240 shall have consumed me, shall I live on; and a great portion of myself will ever be surviving.



He says that he is obliged by Cupid to write of Love instead of the Wars, of the Giants, upon which subject he had already commenced.

This work, also, I, Naso, born among the watery Peligni, 301 have composed, the Poet of my own failings. This work, too, has Love demanded. Afar hence, be afar hence, ye prudish matrons; you are not a fitting audience for my wanton lines. Let the maiden that is not cold, read me in the presence of her betrothed; the inexperienced boy, too, wounded by a passion hitherto unknown; and may some youth, now wounded by the bow by which I am, recognise the conscious symptoms of his flame; and after long wondering, may he exclaim, "Taught by what informant, has this Poet been composing my own story?"

I was (I remember) venturing to sing of the battles of the heavens, and Gyges 302 with his hundred hands; and I had sufficient power of expression; what time the Earth so disgracefully avenged herself, and lofty Ossa, heaped upon Olympus, bore Pelion headlong downwards. Having the clouds in my hands, and wielding the lightnings with Jove, which with success he was to hurl in behalf of his realms of the heavens, my mistress shut her door against me; the lightnings together with Jove did I forsake. Jupiter himself disappeared from my thoughts. Pardon me, O Jove; no aid did thy weapons afford me; the shut door was a more potent thunderbolt than thine. I forthwith resumed the language of endearment and trifling Elegies, those weapons of my own; and gentle words prevailed upon the obdurate door.

Verses bring down 303 the horns of the blood-stained Moon; and they recall the snow-white steeds of the Sun in his career. Through verses do serpents burst, their jaws rent asunder, and the water turned back flows upward to its source. Through verses have doors given way; and by verses 304 was the bar, inserted in the door-post, although 'twas made of oak, overcome. Of what use is the swift Achilles celebrated by me? What can this or that son of Atreus do for me? He, too, who wasted as many of his years in wandering as in warfare? And the wretched Hector, dragged by the Hæmonian steeds? But the charms of the beauteous fair being ofttimes sung, she presents herself to the Poet as the reward of his verse. This great recompense is given; farewell, then, ye illustrious names of heroes; your favour is of no use to me. Ye charming fair, turn your eyes to my lines, which blushing Cupid dictates to me.


He has seen a lady walking in the portico of the temple of Apollo, and has sent to know if he may wait upon her. She has replied that it is quite impossible, as the eunuch Bagous is set to watch her. Ovid here addresses Bagous, and endeavours to persuade him to relax his watch over the fair; and shows him how he can do so with safety.

Bagous, 305 with whom is the duty of watching over your mistress, give me your attention, while I say a few but suitable words to you. Yesterday morning I saw a young lady walking in that portico which contains the choir of the daughters of Danaus. 306 At once, as she pleased me, I sent to her, and in my letter I proffered my request; with trembling hand, she answered me, "I cannot." And to my inquiry, why she could not, the cause was announced; namely, that your surveillance over your mistress is too strict.

O keeper, if you are wise (believe me now), cease to deserve my hatred; every one wishes him gone, of whom he stands in dread. Her husband, too, is not in his senses; for who would toil at taking care of that of which no part is lost, even if you do not watch it? But still, in his madness, let him indulge his passion; and let him believe that the object is chaste which pleases universally. By your favour, liberty may by stealth be given to her; that one day she may return to you what you have given her. Are you ready to be a confidant; the mistress is obedient to the slave. You fear to be an accomplice; you may shut your eyes. Does she read a letter by herself; suppose her mother to have sent it. Does a stranger come; bye and bye let him go, 307 as though an old acquaintance. Should she go to visit a sick female friend, who is not sick; in your opinion, let her be unwell. If she shall be a long time at the sacrifice, 308 let not the long waiting tire you; putting your head on your breast, you can snore away. And don't be enquiring what can be going on at the temple of the linen-clad Isis; 309 nor do you stand in any fear whatever of the curving theatres.

An accomplice in the escapade will receive everlasting honour; and what is less trouble than merely to hold your tongue? He is in favour; he turns the house 310 upside down at his pleasure, and he feels no stripes; he is omnipotent; the rest, a scrubby lot, are grovelling on. By him, that the real circumstances may be concealed, false ones are coined; and both the masters approve 311 of, what one, and that the mistress, Approves of. When the husband has quite contracted his brow, and has pursed up his wrinkles, the caressing fair makes him become just as she pleases. But still, let her sometimes contrive some fault against you even, and let her pretend tears, and call you an executioner. 312 Do you, on the other hand, making some charge which she may easily explain; by a feigned accusation remove all suspicion of the truth. 313 In such case, may your honours, then may your limited savings 314 increase; only do this, and in a short time you shall be a free man.

You behold the chains bound around the necks of informers; 315 the loathsome gaol receives the hearts that are unworthy of belief. In the midst of water Tantalus is in want of water, and catches at the apples as they escape him; 'twas his blabbing tongue caused this. 325 While the keeper appointed by Juno, 326 is watching Io too carefully, he dies before his time; she becomes a Goddess.

I have seen him wearing fetters on his bruised legs, through whom a husband was obliged to know of an intrigue. The punishment was less than his deserts; an unruly tongue was the injury of the two; the husband was grieved; the female suffered the loss of her character. Believe me; accusations are pleasing to no husband, and no one do they delight, even though he should listen to them. If he is indifferent, then you are wasting your information upon ears that care nothing for it; if he dotes on her, by your officiousness is he made wretched.

Besides, a faux pas, although discovered, is not so easily proved; she comes before him, protected by the prejudices of her judge. Should even he himself see it, still he himself will believe her as she denies it; and he will condemn his own eyesight, and will impose upon himself. Let him but see the tears of his spouse, and he himself will weep, and he will say, "That blabbing fellow shall be punished." How unequal the contest in which you embark! if conquered, stripes are ready for you; while she is reposing in the bosom of the judge.

No crime do we meditate; we meet not for mixing poisons; my hand is not glittering with the drawn sword. We ask that through you we may be enabled to love in safety; what can there be more harmless than these our prayers?


He again addresses Bagous, who has proved obdurate to his request, and tries to effect his object by sympathising with his unhappy fate.

Alas! that, 327 neither man nor woman, you are watching your mistress, and that you cannot experience the mutual transports of love! He who was the first to mutilate boys, 328 ought himself to have suffered those wounds which he made. You would be ready to accommodate, and obliging to those who entreat you, had your own passion been before inflamed by any fair. You were not born for managing the steed, nor are you skilful in valorous arms; for your right hand the warlike spear is not adapted. With these let males meddle; do you resign all manly aspirations; may the standard be borne 329 by you in the cause of your mistress.

Overwhelm her with your favours; her gratitude may be of use to you. If you should miss that, what good fortune will there be for you? She has both beauty, and her years are fitted for dalliance; her charms are not deserving to fade in listless neglect. Ever watchful though you are deemed, still she may deceive you; what two persons will, does not fail of accomplishment. Still, as it is more convenient to try you with our entreaties, we do implore you, while you have still the opportunity of conferring your favours to advantage. 330


He confesses that he is an universal admirer of the fair sex.

I would not presume to defend my faulty morals, and to wield deceiving arms in behalf of my frailties. I confess them, if there is any use in confessing one's errors; and now, having confessed, I am foolishly proceeding to my own accusation. I hate this state; nor, though I wish, can I be otherwise than what I hate. Alas! how hard it is to bear a lot which you wish to lay aside! For strength and self-control fail me for ruling myself; just like a ship carried along the rapid tide, am I hurried away.

There is no single style of beauty which inflames my passion; there are a hundred causes for me always to be in love.

Is there any fair one that casts down her modest eyes? I am on fire; and that very modesty becomes an ambush against me. Is another one forward; then I am enchanted, because she is not coy; and her liveliness raises all my expectations. If another seems to be prudish, and to imitate the repulsive Sabine dames; 332 I think that she is kindly disposed, but that she conceals it in her stateliness. 333 Or if you are a learned fair, you please me, thus endowed with rare acquirements; or if ignorant, you are charming for your simplicity. Is there one who says that the lines of Callimachus are uncouth in comparison with mine; at once she, to whom I am so pleasing, pleases me. Is there even one who abuses both myself, the Poet, and my lines; I could wish to have her who so abuses me, upon my knee. Does this one walk leisurely, she enchants me with her gait; is another uncouth, still, she may become more gentle, on being more intimate with the other sex.

Because this one sings so sweetly, and modulates her voice 334 with such extreme case, I could wish to steal a kiss from her as she sings. Another is running through the complaining strings with active finger; who could not fall in love with hands so skilled? And now, one pleases by her gestures, and moves her arms to time, 335 and moves her graceful sides with languishing art in the dance; to say nothing about myself, who am excited on every occasion, put Hippolytus 336 there; he would become a Priapus. You, because you are so tall, equal the Heroines of old; 337 and, of large size, you can fill the entire couch as you lie. Another is active from her shortness; by both I am enchanted; both tall and short suit my taste. Is one unadorned; it occurs what addition there might be if she was adorned. Is one decked out; she sets out her endowments to advantage. The blonde will charm me; the brunette 338 will charm me too; a Venus is pleasing, even of a swarthy colour. Does black hair fall upon a neck of snow; Leda was sightly, with her raven locks. Is the hair flaxen; with her saffron locks, Aurora was charming. To every traditional story does my passion adapt itself. A youthful age charms me; an age more mature captivates me; the former is superior in the charms of person, the latter excels in spirit.

In fine, whatever the fair any person approves of in all the City, to all these does my passion aspire.


He addresses his mistress, whom he has detected acting falsely towards him.

Away with thee, quivered Cupid: no passion is of a value so great, that it should so often be my extreme wish to die. It is my wish to die, as oft as I call to mind your guilt. Fair one, born, alas! to be a never-ceasing cause of trouble! It is no tablets rubbed out 339 that discover your doings; no presents stealthily sent reveal your criminality. Oh! would that I might so accuse you, that, after all, I could not convict you! Ah wretched me! and why is my case so stare? Happy the man who boldly dares to defend the object which he loves; to whom his mistress is able to say, "I have done nothing wrong." Hard-hearted is he, and too much does he encourage his own grief, by whom a blood-stained victory is sought in the conviction of the accused.

To my sorrow, in my sober moments, with the wine on table, 342 I myself was witness of your criminality, when you thought I was asleep. I saw you both uttering many an expression by moving your eyebrows; 343 in your nods there was a considerable amount of language. Your eyes were not silent, 344 the table, too, traced over with wine; 345 nor was the language of the fingers wanting; I understood your discourse, 346 which treated of that which it did not appear to do; the words, too, preconcerted to stand for certain meanings. And now, the tables removed, many a guest had gone away; a couple of youths only were there dead drunk. But then I saw you both giving wanton kisses; I am sure that there was billing enough on your part; such, in fact, as no sister gives to a brother of correct conduct, but rather such as some voluptuous mistress gives to the eager lover; such as we may suppose that Phoebus did not give to Diana, but that Venus many a time save to her own dear Mars.

"What are you doing?" I cried out; "whither are you taking those transports that belong to me? On what belongs to myself, I will lay the hand of a master, 347 These delights must be in common with you and me, and with me and you; but why does any third person take a share in them?"

This did I say; and what, besides, sorrow prompted my tongue to say; but the red blush of shame rose on her conscious features; just as the sky, streaked by the wife of Tithonus, is tinted with red, or the maiden when beheld by her new-made husband; 348 just as the roses are beauteous when mingled among their encircling lilies; or when the Moon is suffering from the enchantment of her steeds; 349 or the Assyrian ivory 350 which the Mæonian woman has stained, 351 that from length of time it may not turn yellow. That complexion of hers was extremely like to these, or to some one of these; and, as it happened, she never was more beauteous than then. She looked towards the ground; to look upon the ground, added a charm; sad were her features, in her sorrow was she graceful. I had been tempted to tear her locks just as they were, (and nicely dressed they were) and to make an attack upon her tender cheeks.

When I looked on her face, my strong arms fell powerless; by arms of her own was my mistress defended. I, who the moment before had been so savage, now, as a suppliant and of my own accord, entreated that she would give me kisses not inferior to those given-to my rival. She smiled, and with heartiness she gave me her best kisses; such as might have snatched his three-forked bolts from Jove. To my misery I am now tormented, lest that other person received them in equal perfection; and I hope that those were not of this quality. 352

Those kisses, too, were far better than those which I taught her; and she seemed to have learned something new. That they were too delightful, is a bad sign; that so lovingly were your lips joined to mine, and mine to yours. And yet, it is not at this alone that I am grieved; I do not only complain that kisses were given; although I do complain as well that they were given; such could never have been taught but on a closer acquaintanceship. I know not who is the master that has received a remuneration so ample.


He laments the death of the parrot which he had given to Corinna.

The parrot, the imitative bird 353 sent from the Indians of the East, is dead; come in flocks to his obsequies, ye birds. Come, affectionate denizens of air, and beat your breasts with your wings; and with your hard claws disfigure your delicate features. Let your rough feathers be torn in place of your sorrowing hair; instead of the long trumpet, 354 let your songs resound.

Why, Philomela, are you complaining of the cruelty of Tereus, the Ismarian tyrant? Surely, that grievance is worn out by its length of years. Turn your attention to the sad end of a bird so prized. It is is a great cause of sorrow, but, still, that so old. All, who poise yourselves in your career in the liquid air; but you, above the rest, affectionate turtle-dove, 360 lament him. Throughout life there was a firm attachment between you, and your prolonged and lasting friendship endured to the end. What the Phocian youth 361 was to the Argive Orestes, the same, parrot, was the turtle-dove to you, so long as it was allowed by fate.

But what matters that friendship? What the beauty of your rare plumage? What your voice so ingenious at imitating sounds? What avails it that ever since you were given, you pleased my mistress? Unfortunate pride of all birds, you are indeed laid low. With your feathers you could outvie the green emerald, having your purple beak tinted with the ruddy saffron. There was no bird on earth more skilled at imitating sounds; so prettily 362 did you utter words with your lisping notes.

Through envy, you were snatched away from us: you were the cause of no cruel wars; you were a chatterer, and the lover of peaceful concord. See, the quails, amid all their battles, 363 live on; perhaps, too, for that reason, they become old. With a very little you were satisfied; and, through your love of talking, you could not give time to your mouth for much food. A nut was your food, and poppies the cause of sleep; and a drop of pure water used to dispel your thirst. The gluttonous vulture lives on, the kite, too, that forms its circles in the air, and the jackdaw, the foreboder 364 of the shower of rain. The crow, too, lives on, hateful to the armed Minerva; 366 it, indeed, will hardly die after nine ages. 367 The prattling parrot is dead, the mimic of the human voice, sent as a gift from the ends of the earth. What is best, is generally first carried off by greedy hands; what is worthless, fills its destined numbers. 368 Thersites was the witness of the lamented death of him from Phylax; and now Hector became ashes, while his brothers yet lived.

Why should I mention the affectionate prayers of my anxious mistress in your behalf; prayers borne over the seas by the stormy North wind? The seventh day was come, 369 that was doomed to give no morrow; and now stood your Destiny, with her distaff all uncovered. And yet your words did not die away, in your faltering mouth; as you died, your tongue cried aloud, "Corinna, farewell!" 370

At the foot of the Elysian hill 371 a grove, overshaded with dark holm oaks, and the earth, moist with never-dying grass, is green. If there is any believing in matters of doubt, that is said to be the abode of innocent birds, from which obscene ones are expelled. There range far and wide the guiltless swans; the long-lived Phoenix, too, ever the sole bird of its kind. There the bird itself of Juno unfolds her feathers; the gentle dove gives kisses to its loving mate. Received in this home in the groves, amid these the Parrot attracts the guileless birds by his words. 372

A sepulchre covers his bones; a sepulchre small as his body; on which a little stone has this inscription, well suited to itself: "From this very tomb 377 I may be judged to have been the favorite of my mistress. I had a tongue more skilled at talking than other birds."


He attempts to convince his mistress, who suspects the contrary, that he is not in love with her handmaid Cypassis.

Am I then 378 'to be for ever made the object of accusation by new charges? Though I should conquer, yet I am tired of entering the combat so oft. Do I look up to the very top of the marble theatre, from the multitude, you choose some woman, from whom to receive a cause of grief. Or does some beauteous fair look on me with inexpressive features; you find out that there are secret signs on the features. Do I praise any one; with your nails you attack her ill-starred locks; if I blame any one, you think I am hiding some fault. If my colour is healthy, then I am pronounced to be indifferent towards you; if unhealthy, then I am said to be dying with love for another. But I only wish I was conscious to myself of some fault; those endure punishment with equanimity, who are deserving of it. Now you accuse me without cause; and by believing every thing at random, you yourself forbid your anger to be of any consequence. See how the long-eared ass, 379 in his wretched lot, walks leisurely along, although tyrannized over with everlasting blows.

And lo! a fresh charge; Cypassis, so skilled at tiring, 380 is blamed for having been the supplanter of her mistress. May the Gods prove more favourable, than that if I should have any inclination for a faux pas, a low-born mistress of a despised class should attract me! What free man would wish to have amorous intercourse with a bondwoman, and to embrace a body mangled with the whip? 387 Add, too, that she is skilled in arranging your hair, and is a valuable servant to you for the skill of her hands. And would I, forsooth, ask such a thing of a servant, who is so faithful to you? And for why? Only that a refusal might be united to a betrayal? I swear by Venus, and by the bow of the winged boy, that I am accused of a crime which I never committed.


He wonders how Corinna has discovered his intrigue with Cypassis, her handmaid, and tells the latter how ably he has defended her and himself to her mistress.

Cypassis, perfect in arranging the hair in a thousand fashions, but deserving to adorn the Goddesses alone; discovered, too, by me, in our delightful intrigue, to be no novice; useful, indeed, to your mistress, but still more serviceable to myself; who, I wonder, was the informant of our stolen caresses? "Whence was Corinna made acquainted with your escapade? Is it that I have blushed? Is it that, making a slip in any expression, I have given any guilty sign of our stealthy amours? And have I not, too, declared that if any one can commit the sin with a bondwoman, that man must want a sound mind?

The Thessalian was inflamed by the beauty of the captive daughter of Brises; the slave priestess of Phoebus was beloved by the general from Mycenæ. I am not greater than the descendant of Tantalus, nor greater than Achilles; why should I deem that a disgrace to me, which was becoming for monarchs?

But when she fixed her angry eyes upon you, I saw you blushing all over your cheeks. But, if, perchance, you remember, with how much more presence of mind did I myself make oath by the great Godhead of Venus! Do thou, Goddess, do thou order the warm South winds to bear away over the Carpathian ocean 388 the perjuries of a mind unsullied. In return for these services, swarthy Cypassis, 389 give me a sweet reward, your company to-day. Why refuse me, ungrateful one, and why invent new apprehensions? 'Tis enough to have laid one of your superiors under an obligation. But if, in your folly, you refuse me, as the informer, I will tell what has taken place before; and I myself will be the betrayer of my own failing. And I will tell Cypassis, in what spots I have met you, and how often, and in ways how many and what.


To Cupid.

O Cupid, never angered enough against me, O boy, that hast taken up thy abode in my heart! why dost thou torment me, who, thy soldier, have never deserted thy standards? And why, in my own camp, am I thus wounded? Why does thy torch burn, thy bow pierce, thy friends? 'Twere a greater glory to conquer those who war with thee. Nay more, did not the Hæmonian hero, afterwards, relieve him, when wounded, with his healing aid, whom he had struck with his spear. 390 The hunter follows the prey that flies, that which is caught he leaves behind; and he is ever on the search for still more than he has found. We, a multitude devoted to thee, are too well acquainted with thy arms; yet thy tardy hand slackens against the foe that resists. Of what use is it to be blunting thy barbed darts against bare bones? for Love has left my bones quite bare. Many a man is there free from Love, many a damsel, too, free from Love; from these, with great glory, may a triumph be obtained by thee.

Rome, had she not displayed her strength over the boundless earth, would, even to this day, have been planted thick with cottages of thatch. 391 The invalid soldier is drafted off to the fields 392 that he has received; the horse, when free from the race, 393 is sent into the pastures; the lengthened docks conceal the ship laid up; and the wand of repose 394 is demanded, the sword laid by. It were time for me, too, who have served so oft in love for the fair, now discharged, to be living in quiet.

And yet, if any Divinity were to say to me, 'Live on, resigning love I should decline it; so sweet an evil are the fair. When I am quite exhausted, and the passion has faded from my mind, I know not by what perturbation of my wretched feelings I am bewildered. Just as the horse that is hard of mouth bears his master headlong, as he vainly pulls in the reins covered with foam; just as a sudden gale, the land now nearly made, carries out to sea the vessel, as she is entering harbour; so, many a time, does the uncertain gale of Cupid bear me away, and rosy Love resumes his well-known weapons. Pierce me, boy; naked am I exposed to thee, my arms laid aside; hither let thy strength be directed: here thy right hand tells with effect. Here, as though bidden, do thy arrows now spontaneously come; in comparison to myself, their own quiver is hardly so well known to them.

Wretched is he who endures to rest the whole night, and who calls slumber a great good. Fool, what is slumber but the image of cold death? The Fates will give abundance of time for taking rest.

Only let the words of my deceiving mistress beguile me; in hoping, at least, great joys shall I experience. And sometimes let her use caresses; sometimes let her find fault; oft may I enjoy the favour of my mistress; often may I be repulsed. That Mars is one so dubious, is through thee, his step-son, Cupid; and after thy example does thy step-father wield his arms. Thou art fickle, and much more wavering than thy own wings; and thou both dost give and refuse thy joys at thy uncertain caprice. Still if thou dost listen to me, as I entreat thee, with thy beauteous mother; hold a sway never to be relinquished in my heart. May the damsels, a throng too flighty by far, be added to thy realms; then by two peoples wilt thou be revered.


He tells Græcinus how he is in love with two mistresses at the same time.

Thou wast wont to tell me, Græcinus 395 (I remember well), 'twas thou, I am sure, that a person cannot be in love with two females at the same time. Through thee have I been deceived; through thee have I been caught without my arms. 396 Lo! to my shame, I am in love with two at the same moment. Both of them are charming; both most attentive to their dress; in skill, 'tis a matter of doubt, whether the one or the other is superior. That one is more beauteous than this; this one, too, is more beauteous than that; and this one pleases me the most, and that one the most. The one passion and the other fluctuate, like the skiff, 397 impelled by the discordant breezes, and keep me distracted. Why, Erycina, dost thou everlastingly double my pangs? Was not one damsel sufficient for my anxiety? Why add leaves to the trees, why stars to the heavens filled with them? Why additional waters to the vast ocean?

But still this is better, than if I were languishing without a flame; may a life of seriousness be the lot of my foes. May it be the lot of my foes to sleep in the couch of solitude, and to recline their limbs outstretched in the midst of the bed. But, for me, may cruel Love ever disturb my sluggish slumbers; and may I be not the solitary burden of my couch. May my mistress, with no one to hinder it, make me die with love, if one is enough to be able to do so; but if one is not enough, then two. Limbs that are thin, 401 but not without strength, may suffice; flesh it is, not sinew that my body is in want of. Delight, too, will give resources for vigour to my sides; through me has no fair ever been deceived. Often, robust through the hours of delicious night, have I proved of stalwart body, even in the mom. Happy the man, who proves the delights of Love? Oh that the Gods would grant that to be the cause of my end!

Let the soldier arm his breast 402 that faces the opposing darts, and with his blood let him purchase eternal fame. Let the greedy man seek wealth; and with forsworn mouth, let the shipwrecked man drink of the seas which he has wearied with ploughing them. But may it be my lot to perish in the service of Love: and, when I die, may I depart in the midst of his battles; 403 and may some one say, when weeping at my funeral rites: "Such was a fitting death for his life."


He endeavours to dissuade Corinna from her voyage to Baiæ.

The pine, cut on the heights of Pelion, was the first to teach the voyage full of danger, as the waves of the ocean wondered: which, boldly amid the meeting rocks, 404 bore away the ram remarkable for his yellow fleece. Oh! would that, overwhelmed, the Argo had drunk of the fatal waves, so that no one might plough the wide main with the oar.

Lo! Corinna flies from both the well-known couch, and the Penates of her home, and prepares to go upon the deceitful paths of the ocean. Ah wretched me! why, for you, must I dread the Zephyrs, and the Eastern gales, and the cold Boreas, and the warm wind of the South? There no cities will you admire, there no groves; ever the same is the azure appearance of the perfidious main.

The midst of the ocean has no tiny shells, or tinted pebbles; 405 that is the recreation 406 of the sandy shore. The shore alone, ye fair, should be pressed with your marble feet. Thus far is it safe; the rest of that path is full of hazard. And let others tell you of the warfare of the winds: the waves which Scylla infests, or those which Charybdis haunts: from what rocky range the deadly Ceraunia projects: in what gulf the Syrtes, or in what Malea 407 lies concealed. Of these let others tell: but do you believe what each of them relates: no storm injures the person who credits them.

After a length of time only is the land beheld once more, when, the cable loosened, the curving ship runs out upon the boundless main: where the anxious sailor dreads the stormy winds, and sees death as near him, as he sees the waves. What if Triton arouses the agitated waves? How parts the colour, then, from all your face! Then you may invoke the gracious stars of the fruitful Leda: 409 and may say, 'Happy she, whom her own dry land receives!'Tis far more safe to lie snug in the couch, 410 to read amusing books, 411 and to sound with one's fingers the Thracian lyre.

But if the headlong gales bear away my unavailing words, still may Galatea be propitious to your ship. The loss of such a damsel, both ye Goddesses, daughters of Nereus, and thou, father of the Nereids, would be a reproach to you. Go, mindful of me, on your way, soon to return with favouring breezes: may that, a stronger gale, fill your sails. Then may the mighty Nereus roll the ocean towards this shore: in this direction may the breezes blow: hither may the tide impel the waves. Do you yourself entreat, that the Zephyrs may come full upon your canvass: do you let out the swelling sails with your own hand.

I shall be the first, from the shore, to see the well-known ship, and I shall exclaim, "'Tis she that carries my Divinities: 412 and I will receive you in my arms, and will ravish, indiscriminately, many a kiss; the victim, promised for your return, shall fall; the soft sand shall be heaped, too, in the form of a couch; and some sand-heap shall be as a table 413 for us. There, with wine placed before us, you shall tell many a story, how your bark was nearly overwhelmed in the midst of the waves: and how, while you were hastening to me, you dreaded neither the hours of the dangerous night, nor yet the stormy Southern gales. Though they be fictions, 414 yet all will I believe as truth; why should I not myself encourage what is my own wish? May Lucifer, the most brilliant in the lofty skies, speedily bring me that day, spurring on his steed."


He rejoices in the possession of his mistress, having triumphed over every obstacle.

Come, triumphant laurels, around my temples; I am victorious: lo! in my bosom Corinna is; she, whom her husband, whom a keeper, whom a door so strong, (so many foes!) were watching, that she might by no stratagem be taken. This victory is deserving of an especial triumph: in which the prize, such as it is, is gained without bloodshed. Not lowly walls, not towns surrounded with diminutive trenches, but a fair damsel has been taken by my contrivance.

When Pergamus fell, conquered in a war of twice five years: 415 out of so many, how great was the share of renown for the son of Atreus? But my glory is undivided, and shared in by no soldier: and no other has the credit of the exploit. Myself the general, myself the troops, I have attained this end of my desires: I, myself, have been the cavalry, I the infantry, I, the standard-bearer too. Fortune, too, has mingled no hazard with my feats. Come hither, then, thou Triumph, gained by exertions entirely my own.

And the cause 416 of my warfare is no new one; had not the daughter of Tyndarus been carried off, there would have been peace between Europe and Asia. A female disgracefully set the wild Lapithæ and the two-formed race in arms, when the wine circulated. A female again, 417 good Latinus, forced the Trojans to engage in ruthless warfare, in thy realms. 'Twas the females, 421 when even now the City was but new, that sent against the Romans their fathers-in-law, and gave them cruel arms. I have beheld the bulls fighting for a snow-white mate: the heifer, herself the spectator, afforded fresh courage. Me, too, with many others, but still without bloodshed, has Cupid ordered to bear the standard in his service.


He entreats the aid of Isis and Lucina in behalf of Corinna, in her labour.

While Corinna, in her imprudence, is trying to disengage the burden of her pregnant womb, exhausted, she lies prostrate in danger of her life. She, in truth, who incurred so great a risk unknown to me, is worthy of my wrath; but anger falls before apprehension. But yet, by me it was that she conceived; or so I think. That is often as a fact to me, which is possible.

Isis, thou who dost 422 inhabit Parætonium, 423 and the genial fields of Canopus, 424 and Memphis, 425 and palm-bearing Pharos, 426 and where the rapid. Nile, discharged from its vast bed, rushes through its seven channels into the ocean waves; by thy 'sistra' 428 do I entreat thee; by the faces, too, of revered Anubis; 429 and then may the benignant Osiris 430 ever love thy rites, and may the sluggish serpent 431 ever wreath around thy altars, and may the horned Apis 432 walk in the procession as thy attendant; turn hither thy features, 433 and in one have mercy upon two; for to my mistress wilt thou be giving life, she to me. Full many a time in thy honour has she sat on thy appointed days, 434 on which 435 the throng of the Galli 436 wreathe themselves with thy laurels. 437

Thou, too, who dost have compassion on the females who are in labour, whose latent burden distends their bodies slowly moving; come, propitious Ilithyia, 438 and listen to my prayers. She is worthy for thee to command to become indebted to thee. I, myself, in white array, will offer frankincense at thy smoking altars; I, myself, will offer before thy feet the gifts that I have vowed. I will add this inscription too; "Naso, for the preservation of Corinna, offers these." But if, amid apprehensions so great, I may be allowed to give you advice, let it suffice for you, Corinna, to have struggled in this one combat.


He reproaches his mistress for having attempted to procure abortion.

Of what use is it for damsels to live at ease, exempt from war, and not with their bucklers, 439 to have any inclination to follow the bloodstained troops; if, without warfare, they endure wounds from weapons of their own, and arm their imprudent hands for their own destruction? She who was the first to teach how to destroy the tender embryo, was deserving to perish by those arms of her own. That the stomach, forsooth, may be without the reproach of wrinkles, the sand must 440 be lamentably strewed for this struggle of yours.

If the same custom had pleased the matrons of old, through such criminality mankind would have perished; and he would be required, who should again throw stones 441 on the empty earth, for the second time the original of our kind. Who would have destroyed the resources of Priam, if Thetis, the Goddess of the waves, had refused to bear Achilles, her due burden? If Ilia had destroyed 442 the twins in her swelling womb, the founder of the all-ruling City would have perished.

If Venus had laid violent hands on Æneas in her pregnant womb, the earth would have been destitute of its Cæsars. You, too, beauteous one, might have died at the moment you might have been born, if your mother had tried the same experiment which you have done. I, myself, though destined as I am, to die a more pleasing death by love, should have beheld no days, had my mother slain me.

Why do you deprive the loaded vine of its growing grapes? And why pluck the sour apples with relentless hand? When ripe, let them fall of their own accord; once put forth, let them grow. Life is no slight reward for a little waiting. Why pierce 443 your own entrails, by applying instruments, and why give dreadful poisons to the yet unborn? People blame the Colchian damsel, stained with the blood of her sons; and they grieve for Itys, Slaughtered by his own mother. Each mother was cruel; but each, for sad reasons, took vengeance on her husband, by shedding their common blood. Tell me what Tereus, or what Jason excites you to pierce your body with an anxious hand?

This neither the tigers do in their Armenian dens, 444 nor does the lioness dare to destroy an offspring of her own. But, delicate females do this, not, however, with impunity; many a time 445 does she die herself, who kills her offspring in the womb. She dies herself, and, with her loosened hair, is borne upon the bier; and those whoever only catch a sight of her, cry "She deserved it." 446 But let these words vanish in the air of the heavens, and may there be no weight in these presages of mine. Ye forgiving Deities, allow her this once to do wrong with safety to herself; that is enough; let a second transgression bring its own punishment.


He addresses a ring which he has presented to his mistress, and envi its happy lot.

O ring, 447 about to encircle the finger of the beauteous fair, in which there is nothing of value but the affection of the giver; go as a pleasing gift; and receiving you with joyous feelings, may she at once place you upon her finger. May you serve her as well as she is constant to me; and nicely fitting, may you embrace her finger in your easy circle. Happy ring, by my mistress will you be handled. To my sorrow, I am now envying my own presents.

O! that I could suddenly be changed into my own present, by the arts of her of Ææa, or of the Carpathian old man! 448 Then could I wish you to touch the bosom of my mistress, and for her to place her left hand within her dress. Though light and fitting well, I would escape from her finger; and loosened by some wondrous contrivance, into her bosom would I fall. I too, as well, that I might be able to seal 449 her secret tablets, and that the seal, neither sticky nor dry, might not drag the wax, should first have to touch the lips 450 of the charming fair. Only I would not seal a note, the cause of grief to myself. Should I be given, to be put away in her desk, 459 I would refuse to depart, sticking fast to your fingers with ray contracted circle.

To you, my life, I would never be a cause of disgrace, or a burden which your delicate fingers would refuse to carry. Wear me, when you are bathing your limbs in the tepid stream; and put up with the inconvenience of the water getting beneath the stone. But, I doubt, that on seeing you naked, my passion would be aroused; and that, a ring, I should enact the part of the lover. But why wish for impossibilities? Go, my little gift; let her understand that my constancy is proffered with you.


He enlarges on the beauties of his native place, where he is now staying; but, notwithstanding the delights of the country, he says that he cannot feel happy in the absence of his mistress, whom he invites to visit him.

Sulmo, 460 the third part of the Pelignian land, 461 now receives me; a little spot, but salubrious with its flowing streams. Though the Sun should cleave the earth with his approaching rays, and though the oppressive Constellation 462 of the Dog of Icarus should shine, the Pelignian fields are traversed by flowing streams, and the shooting grass is verdant on the soft ground. The earth is fertile in corn, and much more fruitful in the grape; the thin soil 463 produces, too, the olive, that bears its berries. 464 The rivers also trickling amid the shooting blades, the grassy turfs cover the moistened ground.

But my flame is far away. In one word, I am mistaken; she who excites my flame is far off; my flame is here. I would not choose, could I be placed between Pollux and Castor, to be in a portion of the heavens without yourself. Let them lie with their anxious cares, and let them be pressed with the heavy weight of the earth, who have measured out the earth into lengthened tracks. 465 Or else they should have bid the fair to go as the companions of the youths, if the earth must be measured out into lengthened tracks. Then, had I, shivering, had to pace the stormy Alps, 466 the journey would have been pleasant, so that I had been with my love. With my love, I could venture to rush through the Libyan quicksands, and to spread my sails to be borne along by the fitful Southern gales. Then, I would not dread the monsters which bark beneath the thigh of the virgin Scylla; nor winding Malea, thy bays; nor where Charybdis, sated with ships swallowed up, disgorges them, and sucks up again the water which she has discharged. And if the sway of the winds prevails, and the waves bear away the Deities about to come to our aid; do you throw your snow-white arms around my shoulders; with active body will I support the beauteous burden. The youth who visited Hero, had often swam across the waves; then, too, would he have crossed them, but the way was dark.

But without you, although the fields affording employment with their vines detain me; although the meadows be overflowed by the streams, and though the husbandman invite the obedient stream 467 into channels, and the cool air refresh the foliage of the trees, I should not seem to be among the healthy Peliguians; I should not seem to be in the place of my birth—my paternal fields; but in Scythia, and among the fierce Cilicians, 468 and the Britons painted green, 469 and the rocks which are red with the gore of Prometheus.

The elm loves the vine, 471 the vine forsakes not the elm: why am I so often torn away from my love? But you used to swear, both by myself, and by your eyes, my stars, that you would ever be my companion. The winds and the waves carry away, whither they choose, the empty words of the fair, more worthless than the falling leaves. Still, if there is any affectionate regard in you for me thus deserted: now commence to add deeds to your promises: and forthwith do you, as the nags 472 whirl your little chaise 473 along, shake the reins over their manes at full speed. But you, rugged hills, subside, wherever she shall come; and you paths in the winding vales, be smooth.


He says that he is the slave of Corinna, and complains of the tyranny which she exercises over him.

If there shall be any one who thinks it inglorious to serve a damsel: in his opinion I shall be convicted of such baseness. Let me be disgraced; if only she, who possesses Paphos, and Cythera, beaten by the waves, torments me with less violence. And would that I had been the prize, too, of some indulgent mistress; since I was destined to be the prize of some fair. Beauty begets pride; through her charms Corinna is disdainful. Ah wretched me! why is she so well known to herself? Pride, forsooth, is caught from the reflection of the mirror: and there she sees not herself, unless she is first adorned.

If your beauty gives you a sway not too great over all things, face born to fascinate my eyes, still, you ought not, on that account, to despise me comparatively with yourself. That which is inferior must be united with what is great. The Nymph Calypso, seized with passion for a mortal, is believed to have detained the hero against his will. It is believed that the ocean-daughter of Nereus was united to the king of Plithia, 474 and that Egeria was to the just Numa: that Venus was to Vulcan: although, his anvil 475 left, he limped with a distorted foot. This same kind of verse is unequal; but still the heroic is becomingly united 476 with the shorter measure.

You, too, my life, receive me upon any terms. May it become you to impose conditions in the midst of your caresses. I will be no disgrace to you, nor one for you to rejoice at my removal. This affection will not be one to be disavowed by you. 477 May my cheerful lines be to you in place of great wealth: even many a fair wishes to gain fame through me. I know of one who publishes it that she is Corinna. 478 What would she not be ready to give to be so? But neither do the cool Eurotas, and the poplar-bearing Padus, far asunder, roll along the same banks; nor shall any one but yourself be celebrated in my poems. You, alone, shall afford subject-matter for my genius.


He tells Macer that he ought to write on Love.

While thou art tracing thy poem onwards 479 to the wrath of Achilles, and art giving their first arms to the heroes, after taking the oaths; I, Macer, 480 am reposing in the shade of Venus, unused to toil; and tender Love attacks me, when about to attempt a mighty subject. Many a time have I said to my mistress, "At length, away with you:" and forthwith she has seated herself in my lap. Many a time have I said, "I am ashamed of myself:" when, with difficulty, her tears repressed, she has said, "Ah wretched me! Now you are ashamed to love." And then she has thrown her arms around my neck: and has given me a thousand kisses, which quite overpowered me. I am overcome: and my genius is called away from the arms it has assumed; and I forthwith sing the exploits of my home, and my own warfare.

Still did I wield the sceptre: and by my care my Tragedy grew apace; 481 and for this pursuit I was well prepared. Love smiled both at my tragic pall, and my coloured buskins, and the sceptre wielded so well by a private hand. From this pursuit, too, did the influence of my cruel mistress draw me away, and Love triumphed over the Poet with his buskins. As I am allowed to do, either I teach the art of tender love, (alas! by my own precepts am I myself tormented:) or I write what was delivered to Ulysses in the words of Penelope, or thy tears, deserted Phyllis. What, too, Paris and Macareus, and the ungrateful Jason, and the parent of Hip-polytus, and Hippolytus himself read: and what the wretched Dido says, brandishing the drawn sword, and what the Lesbian mistress of the Æolian lyre.

How swiftly did my friend, Sabinus, return 482 from all quarters of the world, and bring back letters 483 from different spots! The fair Penelope recognized the seal of Ulysses: the stepmother read what was written by her own Hippolytus. Then did the dutiful Æneas write an answer to the afflicted Elissa; and Phyllis, if she only survives, has something to read. The sad letter came to Hypsipyle from Jason: the Lesbian damsel, beloved by Apollo, may give the lyre that she has vowed to Phoebus. 484 Nor, Macer, so far as it is safe for a poet who sings of wars, is beauteous Love unsung of by thee, in the midst of warfare. Both Paris is there, and the adultress, the far-famed cause of guilt: and Laodamia, who attends her husband in death. If well I know thee; thou singest not of wars with greater pleasure than these; and from thy own camp thou comest back to mine.


He tells a husband who does not care for his wife to watch her a little more carefully.

If, fool, thou dost not need the fair to be well watched; still have her watched for my sake: that I may be pleased with her the more. What one may have is worthless; what one may not have, gives the more edge to the desires. If a man falls in love with that which another permits him to love, he is a man without feeling. Let us that love, both hope and fear in equal degree; and let an occasional repulse make room for our desires.

Why should I think of Fortune, should she never care to deceive me? I value nothing that does not sometimes cause me pain. The clever Corinna saw this failing in me; and she cunningly found out the means by which I might be enthralled. Oh, how many a time, feigning a pain in her head 485 that was quite well, has she ordered me, as I lingered with tardy foot, to take my departure! Oh, how many a time has she feigned a fault, and guilty herself, has made there to be an appearance of innocence, just as she pleased! When thus she had tormented me and had rekindled the languid flame, again was she kind and obliging to my wishes. What caresses, what delightful words did she have ready for me! What kisses, ye great Gods, and how many, used she to give me!

You, too, who have so lately ravished my eyes, often stand in dread of treachery, often, when entreated, refuse; and let me, lying prostrate on the threshold before your door-posts, endure the prolonged cold throughout the frosty night. Thus is my love made lasting, and it grows up in lengthened experience; this is for my advantage, this forms food for my affection. A surfeit of love, 486 and facilities too great, become a cause of weariness to me, just as sweet food cloys the appetite. If the brazen tower had never enclosed Danaë, 487 Danaë had never been made a mother by Jove. While Juno is watching Io 'with her curving horns, she becomes still more pleasing to Jove than she has been before.

Whoever desires what he may have, and what is easily obtained, let him pluck leaves from the trees, and take water from the ample stream. If any damsel wishes long to hold her sway, let her play with her lover. Alas! that I, myself, am tormented through my own advice. Let constant indulgence be the lot of whom it may, it does injury to me: that which pursues, from it I fly; that which flies, I ever pursue. But do thou, too sure of the beauteous fair, begin now at nightfall to close thy house. Begin to enquire who it is that so often stealthily paces thy threshold? Why, too, the dogs bark 488 in the silent night. Whither the careful handmaid is carrying, or whence bringing back, the tablets? Why so oft she lies in her couch apart? Let this anxiety sometimes gnaw into thy very marrow; and give some scope and some opportunity for my stratagems.

If one could fall in love with the wife of a fool, that man could rob the barren sea-shore of its sand. And now I give thee notice; unless thou begin to watch this fair, she shall begin to cease to be a flame of mine. I have put up with much, and that for a long time; I have often hoped that it would come to pass, that I should adroitly deceive thee, when thou hadst watched her well. Thou art careless, and dost endure what should be endured by no husband; but an end there shall be of an amour that is allowed to me. And shall I then, to my sorrow, forsooth, never be forbidden admission? Will it ever be night for me, with no one for an avenger? Am I to dread nothing? Shall I heave no sighs in my sleep? What have I to do with one so easy, what with such a pander of a husband? By thy own faultiness thou dost mar my joys. Why, then, dost thou not choose some one else, for so great long-suffering to please? If it pleases thee for me to be thy rival, forbid me to be so.——



The Poet deliberates whether he shall continue to write Elegies, or whether he shall turn to Tragedy.

There stands an ancient grove, and one uncut for many a year; 'tis worthy of belief that a Deity inhabits that spot. In the midst there is a holy spring, and a grotto arched with pumice; and on every side the birds pour forth their sweet complaints. Here, as I was walking, protected by the shade of the trees, I was considering upon what work my Muse should commence. Elegy came up, having her perfumed hair wreathed; and, if I mistake not, one of her feet was longer than the other. 501 Her figure was beauteous; her robe of the humblest texture, her garb that of one in love; the fault of her foot was one cause of her gracefulness.

Ruthless Tragedy, too, came with her mighty stride; on her scowling brow were her locks; her pall swept the ground. Her left hand held aloft the royal sceptre; the Lydian buskin 502 was the high sandal for her feet. And first she spoke; "And when will there be an end of thy loving? O Poet, so slow at thy subject matter! Drunken revels 503 tell of thy wanton course of life; the cross roads, as they divide in their many ways, tell of it. Many a time does a person point with his finger at the Poet as he goes along, and say, 'That, that is the man whom cruel Love torments.' Thou art talked of as the story of the whole City, and yet thou dost not perceive it; while, all shame laid aside, thou art boasting of thy feats. 'Twere time to be influenced, touched by a more mighty inspiration; 505 long enough hast thou delayed; commence a greater task. By thy subject thou dost cramp thy genius; sing of the exploits of heroes; then thou wilt say, 'This is the field that is worthy of my genius.' Thy Muse has sportively indited what the charming fair may sing; and thy early youth has been passed amidst its own numbers. Now may I, Roman Tragedy, gain a celebrity by thy means; thy conceptions will satisfy my requirements."

Thus far did she speak; and, supported on her tinted buskins, three or four times she shook her head with its flowing locks. The other one, if rightly I remember, smiled with eyes askance. Am I mistaken, or was there a branch of myrtle in her right hand? "Why, haughty Tragedy," said she, "dost thou attack me with high-sounding words? And canst thou never be other than severe? Still, thou thyself hast deigned to be excited in unequal numbers! 506 Against me hast thou strived, making use of my own verse. I should not compare heroic measures with my own; thy palaces quite overwhelm my humble abodes. I am a trifler; and with myself, Cupid, my care, is a trifler too; I am no more substantial myself than is my subject-matter. Without myself, the mother of wanton Love were coy; of that Goddess do I show myself the patroness 507 and the confidant. The door which thou with thy rigid buskin canst not unlock, the same is open to my caressing words. And yet I have deserved more power than thou, by putting up with many a thing that would not have been endured by thy haughtiness.

"Through me Corinna learned how, deceiving her keeper, to shake the constancy of the fastened door, 508 and to slip away from her couch, clad in a loose tunic, 509 and in the night to move her feet without a stumble. Or how often, cut in the wood, 510 have I been hanging up at her obdurate doors, not fearing to be read by the people as they passed! I remember besides, how, when sent, I have been concealed in the bosom of the handmaid, until the strict keeper had taken his departure. Still further—when thou didst send me as a present on her birthday 511 —but she tore me to pieces, and barbarously threw me in the water close by. I was the first to cause the prospering germs of thy genius to shoot; it has, as my gift, that for which she is now asking thee."

They had now ceased; on which I began: "By your own selves, I conjure you both; let my words, as I tremble, be received by unprejudiced ears. Thou, the one, dost grace me with the sceptre and the lofty buskin; already, even by thy contact with my lips, have I spoken in mighty accents. Thou, the other, dost offer a lasting fame to my loves; be propitious, then, and with the long lines unite the short.

"Do, Tragedy, grant a little respite to the Poet. Thou art an everlasting task; the time which she demands is but short." Moved by my entreaties, she gave me leave; let tender Love be sketched with hurried hand, while still there is time; from behind 514 a more weighty undertaking presses on.


To his mistress, in whose company he is present at the chariot races in the Circus Maximus. He describes the race.

I am not sitting here 515 an admirer of the spirited steeds; 516 still I pray that he who is your favourite may win. I have come here to chat with you, and to be seated by you, 517 that the passion which yea cause may not be unknown to you. You are looking at the race, I am looking at you; let us each look at what pleases us, and so let us each feast our eyes. O, happy the driver 518 of the steeds, whoever he is, that is your favourite; it is then his lot to be the object of your care; might such be my lot; with ardent zeal to be borne along would I press over the steeds as they start from the sacred barrier. 519 And now I would give rein; 520 now with my whip would I lash their backs; now with my inside wheel would I graze the turning-place. 521 If you should be seen by me in my course, then I should stop; and the reins, let go, would fall from my hands.

Ah! how nearly was Pelops 522 falling by the lance of him of Pisa, while, Hippodamia, he was gazing on thy face! Still did he prove the conqueror through the favour of his mistress; 523 let us each prove victor through the favour of his charmer. Why do you shrink away in vain? 524 The partition forces us to sit close; the Circus has this advantage 525 in the arrangement of its space. But do you 526 on the right hand, whoever you are, be accommodating to the fair; she is being hurt by the pressure of your side. And you as well, 527 who are looking on behind us; draw in your legs, if you have any decency, and don't press her back with your hard knees. But your mantle, hanging too low, is dragging on the ground; gather it up; or see, I am taking it up 528 in my hands. A disobliging garment you are, who are thus concealing ancles so pretty; and the more you gaze upon them, the more disobliging garment you are. Such were the ancles of the fleet Atalanta, 529 which Milanion longed to touch with his hands. Such are painted the ancles of the swift Diana, when, herself still bolder, she pursues the bold beasts of prey. On not seeing them, I am on fire; what would be the consequence if they were seen? You are heaping flames upon flames, water upon the sea. From them I suspect that the rest may prove charming, which is so well hidden, concealed beneath the thin dress.

But, meanwhile, should you like to receive the gentle breeze which the fan may cause, 530 when waved by my hand? Or is the heat I feel, rather that of my own passion, and not of the weather, and is the love of the fair burning my inflamed breast? While I am talking, your white clothes are sprinkled with the black dust; nasty dust, away from a body like the snow.

But now the procession 531 is approaching; give good omens both in words and feelings. The time is come to applaud; the procession approaches, glistening with gold. First in place is Victory borne 532 with expanded wings; 533 come hither, Goddess, and grant that this passion of mine may prove victorious.

"Salute Neptune, 534 you who put too much confidence in the waves; I have nought to do with the sea; my own dry land engages me. Soldier, salute thy own Mars; arms I detest 535 Peace delights me, and Love found in the midst of Peace. Let Phoebus be propitious to the augurs, Phoebe to the huntsmen; turn, Minerva, towards thyself the hands of the artisan. 536 Ye husbandmen, arise in honour of Ceres and the youthful Bacchus; let the boxers 537 render Pollux, the horseman Castor propitious. Thee, genial Venus, and the Loves, the boys so potent with the bow, do I salute; be propitious, Goddess, to my aspirations. Inspire, too, kindly feelings in my new mistress; let her permit herself to be loved." She has assented; and with her nod she has given a favourable sign. What the Goddess has promised, I entreat yourself to promise. With the leave of Venus I will say it, you shall be the greater Goddess. By these many witnesses do I swear to you, and by this array of the Gods, that for all time you have been sighed for by me. But your legs have no support; you can, if perchance you like, rest the extremities of your feet in the lattice work. 538

Now the Prætor, 539 the Circus emptied, has sent from the even barriers 540 the chariots with their four steeds, the greatest sight of all. I see who is your favourite; whoever you wish well to, he will prove the conqueror. The very horses appear to understand what it is you wish for. Oh shocking! around the turning-place he goes with a circuit far too wide. 541 What art thou about? The next is overtaking thee with his wheel in contact. What, wretched man, art thou about? Thou art wasting the good wishes of the fair; pull in the reins, I entreat, to the left, 542 with a strong hand. We have been resting ourselves in a blockhead; but still, Romans, call him back again, 543 and by waving the garments, 544 give the signal on every side. See! they are calling him back; but that the waving of the garments may not disarrange your hair, 545 you may hide yourself quite down in my bosom.

And now, the barrier 546 unbarred once more, the side posts are open wide; with the horses at full speed the variegated throng 547 bursts forth. This time, at all events, 548 do prove victorious, and bound over the wide expanse; let my wishes, let those of my mistress, meet with success. The wishes of my mistress are fulfilled; my wishes still exist. He bears away the palm; 549 the palm is yet to be sought by me. She smiles, and she gives me a promise of something with her expressive eye. That is enough for this spot; grant the rest in another place.


He complains of his mistress, whom he has found to be forsworn.

Go to, believe that the Gods exist; she who had sworn has broken her faith, and still her beauty remains 550 just as it was before. Not yet forsworn, flowing locks had she; after she has deceived the Gods, she has them just as long. Before, she was pale, having her fair complexion suffused with the blush of the rose; the blush is still beauteous on her complexion of snow. Her foot was small; still most diminutive is the size of that foot. Tall was she, and graceful; tall and graceful does she still remain. Expressive eyes had she, which shone like stars; many a time through them has the treacherous fair proved false to me. 551

Even the Gods, forsooth, for ever permit the fair to be forsworn, and beauty has its divine sway. 552 I remember that of late she swore both by her own eyes and by mine, and mine felt pain. 553 Tell me, ye Gods, if with impunity she has proved false to you, why have I suffered, punishment for the deserts of another? But the virgin daughter of Cepheus is no reproach, forsooth, to you, 554 who was commanded to die for her mother, so inopportunely beauteous. 'Tis not enough that I had you for witnesses to no purpose; unpunished, she laughs at even the Gods together with myself; that by my punishment she may atone for her perjuries, am I, the deceived, to be the victim of the deceiver? Either a Divinity is a name without reality, and he is revered in vain, and influences people with a silly credulity; or else, if there is any God, he is fond of the charming fair, and gives them alone too much licence to be able to do any thing.

Against us Mavors is girded with the fatal sword; against us the lance is directed by the invincible hand of Pallas; against us the flexible bow of Apollo is bent; against us the lofty right hand of Jove wields the lightnings. The offended Gods of heaven fear to hurt the fair; and they spontaneously dread those who dread them not. And who, then, would take care to place the frankincense in his devotion upon the altars? At least, there ought to be more spirit in men. Jupiter, with his fires, hurls at the groves 555 and the towers, and yet he forbids his weapons, thus darted, to strike the perjured female. Many a one has deserved to be struck. The unfortunate Semele 556 perished by the flames; that punishment was found for her by her own compliant disposition. But if she had betaken herself off, on the approach of her lover, his father would not have had for Bacchus the duties of a mother to perform.

Why do I complain, and why blame all the heavens? The Gods have eyes as well as we; the Gods have hearts as well. Were I a Divinity myself, I would allow a woman with impunity to swear falsely by my Godhead. I myself would swear that the fair ever swear the truth; and I would not be pronounced one of the morose Divinities. Still, do you, fair one, use their favour with more moderation, or, at least, do have some regard 557 for my eyes.


He tells a jealous husband, who watches his wife, that the greater his precautions, the greater are the temptations to sin.

Cruel husband, by setting a guard over the charming fair, thou dost avail nothing; by her own feelings must each be kept. If, all apprehensions removed, any woman is chaste, she, in fact, is chaste; she who sins not, because she cannot, still sins. 558 However well you may have guarded the person, the mind is still unchaste; and, unless it chooses, it cannot be constrained. You cannot confine the mind, should you lock up every thing; when all is closed, the unchaste one will be within. The one who can sin, errs less frequently; the very opportunity makes the impulse to wantonness to be the less powerful. Be persuaded by me, and leave off instigating to criminality by constraint; by indulgence thou mayst restrain it much more effectually.

I have sometimes seen the horse, struggling against his reins, rush on like lightning with his resisting mouth. Soon as ever he felt that rein was given, he stopped, and the loosened bridle lay upon his flowing mane. We are ever striving for what is forbidden, and are desiring what is denied us; even so does the sick man hanker after the water that is forbidden him. Argus used to carry a hundred eyes in his forehead, a hundred in his neck; 559 and these Love alone many a time evaded. Danaë, who, a maid, had been placed in the chamber which was to last for ever with its stone and its iron, 560 became a mother. Penelope, although she was without a keeper, amid so many youthful suitors, remained undefiled.

Whatever is hoarded up, we long for it the more, and the very pains invite the thief; few care for what another giants.

Not through her beauty is she captivating, but through the fondness of her husband; people suppose it to be something unusual which has so captivated thee. Suppose she is not chaste whom her husband is guarding, but faithless; she is beloved; but this apprehension itself causes her value, rather than her beauty. Be indignant if thou dost please; forbidden pleasures delight me: if any woman can only say, "I am afraid, that woman alone pleases me. Nor yet is it legal 561 to confine a free-born woman; let these fears harass the bodies of those from foreign parts. That the keeper, forsooth, may be able to say, 'I caused it she must be chaste for the credit of thy slave. He is too much of a churl whom a faithless wife injures, and is not sufficiently acquainted with the ways of the City; in which Romulus, the son of Ilia, and Remus, the son of Ilia, both begotten by Mars, were not born without a crime being committed. Why didst thou choose a beauty for thyself, if she was not pleasing unless chaste? Those two qualities 562 cannot by any means be united.'"

If thou art wise, show indulgence to thy spouse, and lay aside thy morose looks; and assert not the rights of a severe husband. Show courtesy, too, to the friends thy wife shall find thee, and many a one will she find. 'Tis thus that great credit accrues at a very small outlay of labour. Thus wilt thou be able always to take part in the festivities of the young men, and to see many a thing at home, 563 which you have not presented to her.


A vision, and its explanation.

Twas night, and sleep weighed down my wearied eyes. Such a vision as this terrified my mind.

Beneath a sunny hill, a grove was standing, thick set with holm oaks; and in its branches lurked full many a bird. A level spot there was beneath, most verdant with the grassy mead, moistened with the drops of the gently trickling stream. Beneath the foliage of the trees, I was seeking shelter from the heat; still, under the foliage of the trees it was hot. Lo! seeking for the grass mingled with the variegated flowers, a white cow was standing before my eyes; more white than the snows at the moment when they have just fallen, which, time has not yet turned into flowing water. More white than the milk which is white with its bubbling foam, 564 and at that moment leaves the ewe when milked. 565 A bull there was, her companion, he, in his happiness, eas her mate; and with his own one he pressed the tender grass. While he was lying, and slowly ruminating upon the grass chewed once again; and once again was feeding on the food eaten by him before; he seemed, as sleep took away his strength, to lay his horned head upon the ground that supported it. Hither came a crow, gliding through the air on light wings; and chattering, took her seat upon the green sward; and thrice with her annoying beak did she peck at the breast of the snow-white cow; and with her bill she took away the white hair. Having remained awhile, she left the spot and the bull; but black envy was in the breast of the cow. And when she saw the bulls afar browsing upon the pastures (bulls were browsing afar upon the verdant pastures), thither did she betake herself, and she mingled among those herds, and sought out a spot of more fertile grass.

"Come, tell me, whoever thou art, thou interpreter of the dreams of the night, what (if it has any truth) this vision means." Thus said I: thus spoke the interpreter of the dreams of the night, as he weighed in his mind each particular that was seen; "The heat which thou didst wish to avoid beneath the rustling leaves, but didst but poorly avoid, was that of Love. The cow is thy mistress; that complexion is suited to the fair. Thou wast the male, and the bull with the fitting mate. Inasmuch as the crow pecked at her breast with her sharp beak; an old hag of a procuress 566 will tempt the affections of thy mistress. In that, after hesitating long, his heifer left the bull, thou wilt be left to be chilled in a deserted couch. Envy and the black spots below the front of her breast, show that she is not free from the reproach of inconstancy."

Thus spoke the interpreter; the blood retreated from my chilled face; and profound night stood before my eyes.


He addresses a river which has obstructed his passage while he is going to his mistress.

River that hast 567 thy slimy banks planted with reeds, to my mistress I am hastening; stay thy waters for a moment. No bridges hast thou, nor yet a hollow boat 568 to carry one over without the stroke of the oar, by means of the rope thrown across. Thou wast a small stream, I recollect; and I did not hesitate to pass across thee; and the surface of thy waves then hardly reached to my ancles. Now, from the opposite mountain 569 thou dost rush, the snows being melted, and in thy turbid stream thou dost pour thy muddied waters. What avails it me thus to have hastened? What to have given so little time to rest? What to have made the night all one with the day? 569*

If still I must be standing here; if, by no contrivance, thy opposite banks are granted to be trodden by my foot.

Now do I long for the wings which the hero, the son of Danaë, 570 possessed, when he bore away the head, thickset with the dreadful serpents; now do I wish for the chariot, 571 from which the seed of Ceres first came, thrown upon the uncultivated ground. Of the wondrous fictions of the ancient poets do I speak; no time has produced, nor does produce, nor will produce these wonders. Rather, do thou, stream that dost overflow thy wide banks, flow within thy limits, then for ever mayst thou run on. Torrent, thou wilt not, believe me, be able to endure the reproaches, if perchance I should be mentioned as detained by thee in my love.

Rivers ought rather to aid youths in their loves; rivers themselves have experienced what love is. Inachus 572 is said to have flowed pale with love for Melie, 573 the Bithynian Nymph, and to have warmed throughout his cold fords. Not yet was Troy besieged for twice five years, when, Xanthus, Neæra attracted thy eyes. Besides; did not enduring love for the Arcadian maid force Alpheus 574 to run through various lands? They say, too, that thou, Peneus, didst conceal, in the lands of the Phthiotians, Creüsa, 575 already betrothed to Xanthus. Why should I mention Asopus, whom Thebe, beloved by Mars, 576 received, Thebe, destined to be the parent of five daughters? Should I ask of Achelous, "Where now are thy horns?" thou wouldst complain that they were broken away by the wrathful hand of Hercules. 577 Not of such value was Calydon, 578 nor of such value was the whole of Ætolia; still, of such value was Deianira alone. The enriching Nile, that flows through his seven mouths, who so well conceals the native spot 579 of waters so vast, is said not to have been able to overpower by his stream the flame that was kindled by Evadne, the daughter of Asopus. 580 Enipeus, dried up, 581 that he might be enabled to embrace the daughter of Salmoneus, bade his waters to depart; his waters, so ordered, did depart.

Nor do I pass thee by, who as thou dost roll amid the hollow rocks, foaming, dost water the fields of Argive Tibur 582 whom Ilia 583 captivated, although she was unsightly in her garb, bearing the marks of her nails on her locks, the marks of her nails on her cheeks. Bewailing both the crimes of her uncle, and the fault of Mars, she was wandering along the solitary spots with naked feet. Her the impetuous stream beheld from his rapid waves, and raised his hoarse mouth from the midst of his fords, and thus he said: "Why, in sorrow, art thou pacing my banks, Ilia, the descendant of Laomedon 584 of Ida? Whither have gone thy vestments? Why wandering thus alone? And why does no white fillet 585 bind thy hair tied up? Why weepest thou, and why spoil thy eyes wet with tears? And why beat thy open breast with frenzied hand? That man has both flints and ore of iron in his breast, who, unconcerned, beholds the tears on thy delicate face. Ilia, lay aside thy fears; my palace shall be opened unto thee; the streams, too, shall obey thee; Ilia, lay aside thy fears. Among a hundred Nymphs or more, thou shalt hold the sway; for a hundred or more does my stream contain. Only, descendant of Troy, despise me not, I pray; gifts more abundant than my promises shalt thou receive."

Thus he said; she casting on the ground her modest eyes, as she wept, besprinkled her warm breast with her tears. Thrice did she attempt to fly; thrice did she stop short at the deep waves, as fear deprived her of the power of running. Still, at last, as with hostile fingers she tore her hair, with quivering lips she uttered these bitter words; "Oh! would that my bones had been gathered up, and hidden in the tomb of my fathers, while yet they could be gathered, belonging to me a virgin! Why now, am I courted 586 for any nuptials, a Vestal disgraced, and to be driven from the altars of Ilium? Why do I hesitate? See! by the fingers of the multitude am I pointed at as unchaste. Let this disgrace be ended, which marks my features."

Thus far did she speak, and before her swollen eyes she extended her robe; and so, in her despair, did she throw herself 587 into the rapid waters. The flowing stream is said to have placed his hands beneath her breast, and to have conferred on her the privilege of his nuptial couch.

'Tis worthy of belief, too, that thou hast been inflamed with love for some maiden; but the groves and woods conceal thy failings.

While I have been talking, it has become more swollen with its extending waves, and the deep channel contains not the rushing waters. What, furious torrent, hast thou against me? Why thus delay our mutual transports? Why, churlish river, interrupt the journey once commenced? What if thou didst flow according to some fixed rule, 588 a river of some note? What if thy fame was mighty throughout the earth? But no name hast thou collected from the exhausted rivulets; thou hast no springs, no certain abode hast thou. In place of spring, thou hast rain and melted snow; resources which the sluggish winter supplies to thee. Either in muddy guise, in winter time, thou dost speed onward in thy course; or filled with dust, thou dost pass over the parched ground. What thirsty traveller has been able to drink of thee then? Who has said, with grateful lips, "Mayst thou flow on for ever?"

Onward thou dost run, injurious to the flocks, 589 still more injurious to the fields. Perhaps these mischiefs may move others; my own evils move me. And, oh shocking! did I in my madness relate to this stream the loves of the rivers? I am ashamed unworthily to have pronounced names so great. Gazing on I know not what, could I speak of the rivers 590 Acheloüs and Inachus, and could I, Nile, talk of thy name? But for thy deserts, torrent far from clear, I wish that for thee there may be scorching heat, and winter always dry.


At non formosa est, at non bene culta puella;

At, puto, non votis sæpe petita meis.

Hanc tamen in nullos tenui male languidus usus,

Sed jacui pigro crimen onusque toro.

Nec potui cupiens, pariter cupiente puella,

Inguinis effoeti parte juvante frui.

Ilia quidem nostro subjecit ebumea collo

Brachia, Sithonia candidiora nive;

Osculaque inseruit cupidæ lactantia linguæ,

Lascivum femori Supposuitque femur;

Et mihi blanditias dixit, Dominumque vocavit,

Et quæ præterea publica verba juvant.

Tacta tamen veluti gelidâ mea membra cicutâ,

Segnia propositum destituere suum.

Truncus iners jacui, species, et inutile pondus:

Nec satis exactum est, corpus an umbra forem,

Quæ mihi ventura est, (siquidem ventura), senectus,

Cum desit numeris ipsa juventa suis?

Ah pudet annorum! quo me juvenemque virumque,

Nec juvenem, nec me sensit arnica virum.

Sic flammas aditura pias æterna sacerdos

Surgit, et a caro fratre verenda soror.

At nuper bis flava Chlide, ter Candida Pitho,

Ter Libas officio continuata meo.

Exigere a nobis angustâ nocte Corinnam,

Me memini numéros sustinuisse uovem.

Num mea Thessalico languent tlevota veneno Co

rpora? num misero carmen et herba nocent?

Sagave Puniceâ defixit nomina cerâ,

Et medium tenues in jecur egit acus?

Carmine læsa Ceres sterüem vanescit in herbam:

Deficiunt læsæ carmine fontis aquæ:

Ilicibus glandes, cantataque vitibus uva

Decidit; et nullo poma movente fluunt.

Quid vetat et nervos magicas torpere per arteg

Forsitan impatiens sit latus inde meum.

Hue pudor accessit: facti pudor ipse nocebat

Ille fuit vitii causa secunda mei.

At qualem vidi tantum tetigique puellam,

Sic etiam tunicâ tangitur ipsa sua.

Illius ad tactum Pylius juvenescere possit,

Tithonusque annis fortior esse suis.

Hæc mihi contigerat; scd vir non contigit illi.

Quas nunc concipiam per nova vota preces?

Credo etiam magnos, quo sum tam turpiter usus,

Muneris oblati pcenituisse Deos.

Optabam certe recipi; sum nempe receptus:

Oscula ferre; tuii: proximus esse; fui.

Quo mihi fortunæ tantum? quo régna sine usu?

Quid, nisi possedi dives avarus opes?

Sic aret mediis taciti vulgator in undis;

Pomaque, quæ nullo tempore tangat, habet.

A tenerâ quisquam sic surgit mane puellâ,

Protinus ut sanctos possit adiré Deos.

Sed non blanda, puto, non optima perdidit in me

Oscula, non omni sohcitavit ope.

Ilia graves potuit quercus, adamantaque durum,

Surdaque blanditiis saxa movere suis.

Digna movere fuit certe vivosque virosque;

Sed neque turn vixi, nec vir, ut ante, fui.

Quid juvet, ad surdas si cantet Phemius aures?

Quid miserum Thamyran picta tabeba juvet?

At quæ non tacitâ formavi gaudia mente!

Quos ego non finxi disposuique modos!

Nostra tamen jacuere, velut præmortua, membra

Turpiter, hesternâ languidiora rosâ.

Quæ nunc ecce rigent intempestiva, valentque;

Nunc opus exposcunt, mihtiamque suam.

Quin istic pudibunda jaces, pars pessima nostri?

Sic sum polhcitis captus et ante tuis.

Tu dominam falbs; per te deprensus inermis

Tristia cum magno damna pudore tub.

Hanc etiam non est mea dedignata puella

Molbter admotâ sobcitare manu.

Sed postquam nullas consurgere posse per artes,

Immemoremque sui procubuisse videt;

Quid me ludis? ait; quis te, male sane, jubebat

Invxtum nostro ponere membra toro?

Aut te trajectis Ææa venefica lanis

Devovet, aut abo lassus amore venis.

Nec mora; desiluit tunicâ velata recinctâ:

Et decuit nudos proripuisse pedes.

Neve suæ possent intactam scire ministrae,

Dedecus hoc sumtâ dissimulavit aquâ.


He laments that he is not received by his mistress, and complains that she gives the preference to a wealthy rival.

And does any one still venerate the liberal arts, or suppose that soft verses have any merit? Genius once was more precious than gold; but now, to be possessed of nought is the height of ignorance. After my poems 591 have proved very pleasing to my mistress, it is not allowed me to go where it has been allowed my books. When she has much bepraised me, her door is shut on him who is praised; talented though I be, I disgracefully wander up and down.

Behold! a Knight gorged with blood, lately enriched, his wealth acquired 592 through his wounds, 593 is preferred before myself. And can you, my life, enfold him in your charming arms? Can you, my life, rush into his embrace? If you know it not, that head used to wear a helmet; that side which is so at your service, was girded with a sword. That left hand, which thus late 594 the golden ring so badly suits, used to bear the shield; touch his right, it has been stained with blood. And can you touch that right hand, by which some person has met his death? Alas! where is that tenderness of heart of yours? Look at his scars, the traces of his former fights; whatever he possesses, by that body was it acquired. 595 Perhaps, too, he will tell how often he has stabbed a man; covetous one, will you touch the hand that confesses this? I, unstained, the priest of the Muses and of Phoebus, am he who is singing his bootless song before your obdurate doors.

Learn, you who are wise, not what we idlers know, but how to follow the anxious troops, and the ruthless camp; instead of good verses hold sway over 596 the first rank; through this, Homer, hadst thou wished it, she might have proved kind to thee. Jupiter, well aware that nothing is more potent than gold, was himself the reward of the ravished damsel. 597 So long as the bribe was wanting, the father was obdurate, she herself prudish, the door-posts bound with brass, the tower made of iron; but after the knowing seducer resorted to presents, 598 she herself opened her lap; and, requested to surrender, she did surrender.

But when the aged Saturn held the realms of the heavens, the ground kept all money deep in its recesses. To the shades below had he removed brass and silver, and, together with gold, the weight of iron; and no ingots were there in those times. But she used to give what was better, corn without the crooked plough-share, apples too, and honey found in the hollow oak. And no one used with sturdy plough to cleave the soil; with no boundaries 599 did the surveyor mark out the ground. The oars dipped down did not skim the upturned waves; then was the shore 601 the limit of the paths of men. Human nature, against thyself hast thou been so clever; and for thy own destruction too ingenious. To what purpose surround cities with turreted fortifications? 602 To what purpose turn hostile hands to arms? What hast thou to do with the sea? With the earth thou mightst have been content. Why not seek the heavens 603 as well, for a third realm? To the heavens, too, dost thou aspire, so far as thou mayst. Quirinus, Liber, and Alcides, and Caesar but recently, 604 have their temples.

Instead of corn, we dig the solid gold from the earth; the soldier possesses riches acquired by blood. To the poor is the Senate-house 605 shut; wealth alone confers honours; 606 hence, the judge so grave; hence the knight so proud. Let them possess it all; let the field of Mars 607 and the Forum 608 obey them; let these administer peace and cruel warfare. Only, in their greediness, let them not tear away my mistress; and 'tis enough, so they but allow something to belong to the poor.

But now-a-days, he that is able to give away plenty, rules it over a woman like a slave, even should she equal the prudish Sabine dames. The keeper is in my way; with regard to me, 609 she dreads her husband. If I were to make presents, both of them would entirely disappear from the house. Oh! if any God is the avenger of the neglected lover, may he change riches, so ill-gotten, into dust.


He laments the death of the Poet Tibullus.

If his mother has lamented Memnon, his mother Achilles, and if sad deaths influence the great Goddesses; plaintive Elegy, unbind thy sorrowing tresses; alas! too nearly will thy name be derived from fact! The Poet of thy own inspiration, 610 Tibullus, thy glory, is burning, a lifeless body, on the erected pile. 611 Lo! the son of Venus bears both his quiver inverted, and his bow broken, and his torch without a flame; behold how wretched with drooping wings he goes: and how he beats his naked breast with cruel hand. His locks dishevelled about his neck receive his tears, and his mouth resounds with sobs that convulse his body. 'Twas thus, beauteous Iulus, they say that thou didst go forth from thy abode, at the funeral of his brother Æneas. Not less was Venus afflicted when Tibullus died, than when the cruel boar 612 tore the groin of the youth.

And yet we Poets are called 'hallowed,' and the care of the Deities; there are some, too, who believe that we possess inspiration. 613 Inexorable Death, forsooth, profanes all that is hallowed; upon all she lays her 614 dusky hands. What availed his father, what, his mother, for Ismarian Orpheus 615 What, with his songs to have lulled the astounded wild beasts? The same father is said, in the lofty woods, to have sung 'Linus! Alas! Linus! Alas! 616 to his reluctant lyre. Add the son of Mæon, 617 too, by whom, as though an everlasting stream, the mouths of the poets are refreshed by the waters of Piëria: him, too, has his last day overwhelmed in black Avernus; his verse alone escapes the all-consuming pile. The fame of the Trojan toils, the work of the Poets is lasting, and the slow web woven 618 again through the stratagem of the night. So shall Nemesis, so Delia, 619 have a lasting name; the one, his recent choice, the other his first love.

What does sacrifice avail thee? 620 Of what use are now the 'sistra' of Egypt? What, lying apart 621 in a forsaken bed? When the cruel Destinies snatch away the good, (pardon the confession) I am tempted to think that there are no Deities. Live piously; pious though you be, you shall die; attend the sacred worship; still ruthless Death shall drag the worshipper from the temples to the yawning tomb. 622 Put your trust in the excellence of your verse; see! Tibullus lies prostrate; of so much, there hardly remains enough for a little urn to receive.

And, hallowed Poet, have the flames of the pile consumed thee, and have they not been afraid to feed upon that heart of thine? They could have burned the golden temples of the holy Gods, that have dared a crime so great. She turned away her face, who holds the towers of Eryx; 623 there are some, too, who affirm that she did not withhold her tears. But still, this is better than if the Phæacian land 624 had buried him a stranger, in an ignoble spot. Here, 625 at least, a mother pressed his tearful eyes 626 as he fled, and presented the last gifts 627 to his ashes; here a sister came to share the grief with her wretched mother, tearing her unadorned locks. And with thy relatives, both Nemesis and thy first love 628 joined their kisses; and they left not the pile in solitude. Delia, as she departed, said, "More fortunately was I beloved by thee; so long as I was thy flame, thou didst live." To her said Nemesis: "What dost thou say? Are my sufferings a pain to thee? When dying, he grasped me with his failing hand." 629

If, however, aught of us remains, but name and spirit, Tibullus will exist in the Elysian vales. Go to meet him, learned Catullus, 630 with thy Calvus, having thy youthful temples bound with ivy. Thou too, Gallus, (if the accusation of the injury of thy friend is false) prodigal of thy blood 631 and of thy life.

Of these, thy shade is the companion; if only there is any shade of the body, polished Tibullus; thou hast swelled the blessed throng. Rest, bones, I pray, in quiet, in the untouched urn; and may the earth prove not heavy for thy ashes.


He complains to Ceres that during her rites he is separated from his mistress.

The yearly season of the rites of Ceres 632 is come: my mistress lies apart on a solitary couch. Yellow Ceres, having thy floating locks crowned with ears of corn, why dost thou interfere with my pleasures by thy rites? Thee, Goddess, nations speak of as bounteous everywhere: and no one is less unfavorable to the blessings of mankind.

In former times the uncouth peasants did not parch the corn; and the threshing floor was a name unknown on earth. But the oaks, the early oracles, 633 used to bear acorns; these, and the grass of the shooting sod, were the food of men. Ceres was the first to teach the seed to swell in the fields, and with the sickle did she cut her coloured locks; she first forced the bulls to place their necks beneath the yoke; and she with crooked tooth turned up the fallow ground. Can any one believe that she takes delight in the tears of lovers, and is duly propitiated with misery and single-blessedness? Nor yet (although she loves the fruitful fields) is she a coy one; nor lias she a breast devoid of love. The Cretans shall be my witnesses; and the Cretans do not feign everything; the Cretans, a nation proud of having nurtured Jove. 634 There, he who rules the starry citadel of the world, a little child, drank milk with tender lips. There is full confidence in the witness; by its foster-child the witness is recommended I think that Ceres will confess her frailties, so well known.

The Goddess had beheld Iasius 635 at the foot of Cretan Ida, as he pierced the backs of the wild beasts with unerring hand. She beheld, and when her tender marrow caught the flame; on the one side Shame, on the other Love, inflamed her. Shame was conquered by Love; you might see the furrows lying dry, and the crops coming up with a very small proportion of their wheat. 636 When the mattocks stoutly wielded had turned up the land, and the crooked plough had broken the hard earth, and the seed had fallen equally scattered over the wide fields; the hopes of the deceived husbandman were vain.

The Goddess, the guardian of corn, was lingering in the lofty woods; the wreaths of com had fallen from her flowing locks. Crete alone was fertile in its fruitful year; all places, whither the Goddess had betaken herself, were one continued harvest. Ida, the locality itself for groves, grew white with corn, and the wild boar cropped the ears in the woods. The law-giving Minos 637 wished for himself many like years; he wished that the love of Ceres might prove lasting.

Whereas, yellow-haired Goddess, single-blessedness would have been sad to thee; this am I now compelled by thy rites to endure. Why should I be sad, when thy daughter has been found again by thee, and rules over realms, only less than Juno in rank? This festive day calls for both Venus, and songs, and wine. These gifts is it fitting to bear to the ruling Gods.


He tells his mistress that he cannot help loving her.

Much and long time have I suffered; by your faults is my patience overcome. Depart from my wearied breast, disgraceful Love. In truth I have now liberated myself, and I have burst my chains; and I am ashamed to have borne what it shamed me not to endure. I have conquered; and Love subdued I have trodden under foot; late have the horns 638 come upon my head. Have patience, and endure, 639 this pain will one day avail thee; often has the bitter potion given refreshment to the sick.

And could I then endure, repulsed so oft from thy doors, to lay a free-born body upon the hard ground? 640 And did I then, like a slave, keep watch before thy street door, for some stranger I know not whom, that you were holding in your embrace? And did I behold it, when the wearied paramour came out of your door, carrying off his jaded and exhausted sides? Still, this is more endurable than the fact that I was beheld by him; 641 may that disgrace be the lot of my foes.

When have I not kept close fastened to your side as you walked, 642 myself your keeper, myself your husband, myself your companion? And, celebrated by me forsooth, did you please the public: my passion was the cause of passion in many. Why mention the base perjuries of your perfidious tongue? and why the Gods forsworn 643 for my destruction? Why the silent nods of young men at banquets, 644 and words concealed in signs arranged beforehand? She was reported to me to be ill; headlong and distracted I ran; I arrived; and, to my rival she was not ill. 645

Bearing these things, and others on which I am silent, I have oft endured them; find another in my stead, who could put up with these things. Now my ship, crowned with the votive chaplet, listens in safety to the swelling waves of the ocean. Cease to lavish your blandishments and the words which once availed; I am not a fool, as once I was. Love on this side, Hatred on that, are struggling, and are dragging my tender heart in opposite directions; but Love, I think, still gets the better. I will hate, 646 if I can; if not, reluctantly will I love; the bull loves not his yoke; still, that which he hates he bears.

I fly from treachery; your beauty, as I fly, brings me back; I abhor the failings of your morals; your person I love. Thus, I can neither live without you, nor yet with you; and I appear to be unacquainted with my own wishes. I wish that either you were less handsome, or less unprincipled. So beauteous a form does not suit morals so bad. Your actions excite hatred; your beauty demands love. Ah wretched me! she is more potent than her frailties.

O pardon me, by the common rites of our bed, by all the Gods who so often allow themselves to be deceived by you, and by your beauty, equal to a great Divinity with me, and by your eyes, which have captivated my own; whatever you shall be, ever shall you be mine; only do you make choice whether you will wish me to wish as well to love you, or whether I am to love you by compulsion. I would rather spread my sails and use propitious gales; since, though I should refuse, I shall still be forced to love.


He complains that he has rendered his mistress so celebrated by his verses, as to have thereby raised for himself many rivals.

What day was that, on which, ye birds of no white hue, you sent forth your ominous notes, ever sad to me in my loves? Or what star must I consider to be the enemy of my destiny? Or what Deities am I to complain of, as waging war against me? She, who but lately 647 was called my own, whom I commenced alone to love, I fear that with many she must be shared by me.

Am I mistaken? Or has she gained fame by my poems? 'Tis so; by my genius has she been made public. And justly; for why have I made proclamation 648 of her charms? Through my fault has the fair been put up for sale. She pleases, and I the procurer; by my guidance is the lover introduced; by my hands has her door been opened. Whether verses are of any use, is matter of doubt; at all events, they have injured me; they have been envious of my happiness. While Thebes, 649 while Troy, while the exploits of Caesar existed; Corinna alone warmed my genius. Would that I had meddled with verses against the will of the Muses; and that Phoebus had deserted the work commenced! And yet, it is not the custom to listen to Poets as witnesses; 650 I would have preferred all weight to be wanting to my words.

Through us, Scylla, who robbed her father of his white hair, bears the raging dogs 651 beneath her thigh and loins. We have given wings to the feet, serpents to the hair; the victorious descendant of Abas 652 is borne upon the winged steed. We, too, have extended Tityus 653 over the vast space, and have formed the three mouths for the dog bristling -with snakes. We have described Enceladus, 654 hurling with his thousand arms; and the heroes captivated by the voice of the two-shaped damsels. 655 In the Ithacan bags 656 have we enclosed the winds of Æolus; the treacherous Tantalus thirsts in the middle of the stream. Of Niobe we have made the rock, of the damsel, the she-bear; the Cecropian 657 bird sings of Odrysian Itys. Jupiter transforms himself, either into a bird, or into gold 658 or, as a bull, with the virgin placed upon him, he cleaves the waves. Why mention Proteus, and the Theban seed, 659 the teeth? Why that there were bulls, which vomited flames from their mouths? Why, charioteer, that thy sisters distil amber tears? 660 Why that they are now Goddesses of the sea, who once were ships? 661 Why that the light of day fled from the hellish banquet 662 of Atreus? And why that the hard stones followed the lyre 663 as it was struck?

The fertile license of the Poets ranges over an immense space; and it ties not its words to the accuracy of history. So, too, ought my mistress to have been deemed to be falsely praised; now is your credulity a mischief to me.


He describes the Festival of Juno, as celebrated at Falisci, the native place of his wife.

A s my wife was born at Falisci, so fruitful in apples, we repaired to the walls that were conquered, Camillus, by thee. 664 The priestesses were preparing the chaste festival of Juno, with distinguished games, and the heifer of the country. 'Twas a great remuneration for my stay, to be acquainted with the ceremony; although a path, difficult from the ascent, leads the way thither. There stands a grove, ancient, and shaded with numberless trees; look at it, you must confess that a Divinity exists in the spot. An altar receives the prayers, and the votive incense of the pious; an altar made without skill, by ancient hands.

When, from this spot, the pipe has given the signal with its usual note, the yearly procession moves along the covered paths. 665 Snow-white heifers 666 are led, as the crowd applauds, which the Faliscan grass has fed on its own plains; calves, too, not yet threatening with the forehead to inspire fear; and the pig, a smaller victim, from its lowly sty; the leader too, of the flock, with his horns bending back over his hardy temples; the goat alone is odious to the Goddess queen. By her betrayal, discovered in the lofty woods, 667 she is said to have desisted from the flight she had commenced. Even now, by the boys, is she aimed at as a mark; 668 and she is given, as a prize, to the author of her wound. Where the Goddess is to come, the youths and bashful girls sweep the roads before her, with garments 669 as they lie. Their virgin hair is adorned with gold and gems; and the proud mantle conceals their feet, bedecked with gold. After the Grecian manner 670 of their ancestors, clad in white garments, they bear the sacred vessels entrusted to them on their heads, placed beneath. The people hold religious silence, 671 at the moment when the resplendent procession comes up; and she herself follows after her priestesses.

Argive is the appearance of the procession; Agamemnon slain, Halesus 672 fled from both his crime and his father's wealth. And now, an exile, having wandered over both land and sea, he erected lofty walls with prospering hand. He taught his own Falisci the rites of Juno. May they be ever propitious to myself, may they be ever so to her own people.


He entreats his mistress, if she will not be constant, at least, to conceal her intrigues from him.

Beauteous since you are, I do not forbid your being frail; but let it not be a matter of course, that wretched I should know it. Nor does any severity of mine command you to be quite correct; but it only entreats you to try to conceal the truth. She is not culpable, whoever can deny that she has been culpable; and 'tis only the confession of error that makes a woman disgraced. What madness is it to confess in light of day what lies concealed in night? And what you do in secret, to say openly that it is done? The strumpet about to entertain some obscure Roman, first keeps out the public by fastening up the bar. And will you make known your frailties to malicious report? And will you make proof of your own criminality? May your mind be more sound, or, at least, may you imitate the chaste; and although you are not, let me suppose that you are chaste. What you do, still do the same; only deny that you do so; and be not ashamed in public to speak the language of chastity. There is the occasion which demands wantonness; sate it with every delight; far thence be all modesty. Soon as you take your departure thence; away at once with all lasciviousness, and leave your frailties in your chamber

Illic nec tunicam tibi sit posuisse rubori,

Nec femori impositum sustinuisse femur:

Illic purpureis condatur lingua labellis:

Inque modos Venerem mille figuret amor;

Illic nec voces, nec verba juvantia cessent;

Spondaque lascivâ mobilitate tremat.

With your garments put on looks that dread accusation; and let modesty disavow improper pursuits. Deceive the public, deceive me, too; in my ignorance, let me be mistaken, and allow me to enjoy my silly credulity.

Why do I so often espy letters sent and received? Why one side and the other 673 tumbled, of your couch? Why do I see your hair disarranged more than happens in sleep, and your neck bearing the marks of teeth? The fading itself alone you do not bring before my eyes; if you hesitate consulting your own reputation, still, spare me. My senses fail me, and I am expiring, oft as you confess your failings; and the drops flow, chilled throughout my limbs. Then do I love you; then, in vain, do I hate what I am forced to love; 673* then I could wish myself to be dead, but together with you.

No enquiries, for my part, will I make, nor will I try to know what you shall attempt to conceal; and to me it shall be the same as a false charge. If, however, you shall be found detected in the midst of your guilt, and if criminality shall be beheld by my eyes; what has been plainly seen, do you deny to have been plainly seen; my own eyes shall give way to your assertions.'Tis an easy conquest for you to vanquish me, who desire to be vanquished. Let your tongue only be mindful to say—"I did not do it!" since it is your lot to conquer with two words; although not by the merit of your cause, still conquer through your judge.


He tells Venus that he now ceases to write Elegies.

Seek a new Poet, mother of the tender Loves; here the extreme turning-place is grazed 674 by my Elegies, which I, a foster-child of the Pelignian fields, have composed; nor have my sportive lays disgraced me. Me, I say, who, if that is aught, am the heir to my rank, 675 even through a long line of ancestors, and not lately made a Knight in the hurly-burly of warfare. Mantua delights in Virgil, Verona in Catullus; I shall be called the glory of the Pelignian race; which its own liberties summon to glorious arms, 676 when trembling Rome dreaded 677 the allied bands. And some stranger will say, as he looks on the walls of the watery Sulmo, which occupy but a few acres of land, "Small as you are, I will call you great, who were able to produce a Poet so great." Beauteous boy, and thou, Amathusian parent 678 of the beauteous boy, raise your golden standard from my fields. The horned 679 Lyæus 680 has struck me with a thyrsus more potent; with mighty steeds must a more extended plain be paced. Unwarlike Elegies, my sportive 681 Muse, farewell; a work destined to survive long after I am dead and gone.——


001 (return)
[ Were five books.—Ver. 1. From this it is clear, that the first edition which Ovid gave to the public of his 'Amores' was in five Books; but that on revising his work, he preferred (praetulit) these three books to the former five. It is supposed that he rejected many of those Elegies which were of too free a nature and were likely to embroil him with the authorities, by reason of their licentiousness.]

002 (return)
[ Though it should.—Ver. 3. Burmann has rightly observed, that 'ut jam,' in this line, has exactly the force of 'quamvis,' 'although.']

003 (return)
[ In serious numbers.—Ver. 1. By the 'graves numeri,' he means Heroic or Hexameter verses. It is supposed that he alludes to the battle of the Giants or the Titans, on which subject he had begun to write an heroic poem. In these lines Ovid seems to have had in view the commencement of the first Ode of Anacreon.]

004 (return)
[ Suited to the measure.—Ver. 2. The subject being of a grave character, and, as such, suited to Heroic measure.]

005 (return)
[ Abstracted one foot.—Ver. 4. He says that every second line (as is the case in Heroic verse) had as many feet as the first, namely, six : but that Cupid stole a foot from the Hexameter, and reduced it to a Pentameter, whereby the Poet was forced to recur to the Elegiac measure.]

008 (return)
[ Diminish my energies.—Ver. 18. See the Note to the fourth line.]

009 (return)
[ His quiver loosened.—Ver. 21. The 'pharetra,' or quiver, filled with arrows, was used by most of the nations that excelled in archery, among whom were the Scythians, Persians, Lycians, Thracians, and Cretans. It was made of leather, and was sometimes adorned with gold or painting. It had a lid, and was suspended by a belt from the right shoulder. Its usual position was on the left hip, and it was thus worn by the Scythians and Egyptians. The Cretans, however, wore it behind the back, and Diana, in her statues, is represented as so doing. This must have been the method in which Cupid is intended in the present instance to wear it, as he has to unloose the quiver before he takes out the arrow. Some Commentators, however, would have 'solutâ' to refer simply to the act of opening the quiver.]

010 (return)
[ In six feet.—Ver. 27. He says that he must henceforth write in Hexameters and Pentameters, or, in other words, in the Elegiac measure.]

011 (return)
[ My Muse.—Ver. 30. The Muse addressed by him would be Erato, under whose protection were those Poets whose theme was Love. He bids her wreathe her hair with myrtle, because it was sacred to Venus; while, on the other hand, laurels would be better adapted to the Heroic Muse. The myrtle is said to love the moisture and coolness of the sea-shore.]

014 (return)
[ Thy step-father.—Ver. 24. He calls Mars the step-father of Cupid, in consequence of his intrigue with Venus.]

015 (return)
[ Birds so yoked.—Ver. 26. These are the doves which were sacred to Venus and Cupid. By yoking them to the chariot of Mars, the Poe* wishes to show the skill and power of Cupid.]

016 (return)
[ Io triumphe.—Ver. 25. 'Clamare triumphum,' means 'to shout Io triumphe,' as the procession moves along. Lactantius speaks of a poem called 'the Triumph of Cupid,' in which Jupiter and the other Gods were represented as following him in the triumphal procession.]

017 (return)
[ Thyself with gold.—Ver. 42. The poet Mosehus represents Cupid as having wings of gold.]

018 (return)
[ The Gangetic land.—Ver. 47. He alludes to the Indian triumphs of Bacchus, which extended to the river Ganges.]

019 (return)
[ Thy kinsman Cæsar—Ver. 51. Because Augustus, as the adopted son of Julius Cæsar, was said to be descended from Venus, through the line of Æneas.]

020 (return)
[ Shield the conquered.—Ver. 52. Although Augustus had many faults, it must be admitted that he was, like Julius, a most merciful conqueror, and was generally averse to bloodshed.]

021 (return)
[ Founder of my family. —Ver. 8. See the Life of Ovid prefixed to the Fasti; and the Second Book of the Tristia.]

022 (return)
[ Each of my parents.—Ver. 10. From this it appears that this Elegy was composed during the life-time of both of his parents, and while, probably, he was still dependent on his father.]

023 (return)
[ No rover in affection.—Ver. 15. 'Desuitor,' literally means 'one who leaps off.' The figure is derived from those equestrians who rode upon several horses, or guided several chariots, passing from the one to the other. This sport was very frequently exhibited in the Roman Circus. Among the Romans, the 'desuitor' generally wore a 'pileus,' or cap of felt. The Numidian, Scythian, and Armenian soldiers, were said to have been skilled in the same art.]

024 (return)
[ Of the bird.—Ver. 22. He alludes to Leda and Europa.]

026 (return)
[ The same banquet.—Ver. 1. He says that they are about to meet at 'coena,' at the house of a common friend.]

027 (return)
[ The last meal.—Ver. 2. The 'coena' of the Romans is usually translated by the word 'supper'; but as being the chief meal of the day, and being in general, (at least during the Augustan age) taken at about three o'clock, it really corresponds to our 'dinner.']

028 (return)
[ Warm the bosom of another.—Ver. 5. As each guest while reclining on the couch at the entertainment, mostly leaned on his left elbow during the meal, and as two or more persons lay on the same couch, the head of one person reached to the breast of him who lay above him, and the lower person was said to lie on the bosom of the other. Among the Romans, the usual number of persons occupying each couch was three. Sometimes, however, four occupied one couch; while, among the Greeks, only two reclined upon it. In this instance, he describes the lady as occupying the place below her husband, and consequently warming his breast with her head. For a considerable time after the fashion of reclining at meals had been introduced into Rome, the Roman ladies sat at meals while the other sex was recumbent. Indeed, it was generally considered more becoming for females to be seated, especially if it was a party where many persons were present. Juvenal, however, represents a bride as reclining at the marriage supper on the bosom of her husband. On the present occasion, it is not very likely that the ladies were particular about the more rigid rules of etiquette. It must be remembered that before lying down, the shoes or sandals were taken off.]

029 (return)
[ Damsel of Atrax.—Ver. 8. He alludes to the marriage of Hippodamia to Pirithous, and the battle between the Centaurs and the Lapithæ, described in the Twelfth-. Book of the Metamorphoses.]

031 (return)
[ Do come first.—Ver. 14. He hardly knows why he asks her to do so, but still she must come before her husband; perhaps, that he may have the pleasure of gazing upon her without the chance of detection; the more especially as she would not recline till her husband had arrived, and would, till then, probably be seated.]

032 (return)
[ Touch my foot.—Ver. 16. This would show that she had safely received his letter.]

033 (return)
[ My secret signs.—Ver. 18. See the Note in this Volume, to the 90th line of the 17th Epistle.]

034 (return)
[ By my eye-brows.—Ver. 19. See the 82nd line of the 17th Epistle.]

035 (return)
[ Traced in the wine.—Ver. 20. See the 88th line of the 17th Epistle.]

036 (return)
[ Your blooming cheeks.—Ver. 22. Probably by way of check to his want of caution.]

037 (return)
[ Twisted on your fingers.—Ver. 26. The Sabines were the first to introduce the practice of wearing rings among the Romans. The Romans generally wore one ring, at least, and mostly upon the fourth finger of the left hand. Down to the latest period of the Republic, the rings were mostly of iron, and answered the'purpose of a signet. The right of wearing a gold ring remained for several centuries the exclusive privilege of Senators, Magistrates, and Knights. The emperors were not very scrupulous on whom they conferred the privilege of wearing the gold ring, and Severus and Aurelian gave the right to all Roman soldiers. Vain persons who had the privilege, literally covered their fingers with rings, so much so, that Quintilian thinks it necessary to warn the orator not to have them above the middle joint of the fingers. The rings and the gems set in them, were often of extreme beauty and value. From Juvenal and Martial we learn that the coxcombs of the day had rings for both winter and summer wear. They were kept in 'dactyliothecæ,' or ring boxes, where they were ranged in a row.]

038 (return)
[ Who are in prayer.—Ver. 27. It was the custom to hold the altar while the suppliant was praying to the Deities; he here directs her, while she is mentally uttering imprecations against her husband, to fancy that the table is the altar, and to take hold of it accordingly.]

039 (return)
[ If you are discreet.—Ver. 29. Sapias' is put for 'si sapias,' 'if you are discreet,' 'if you would act sensibly.']

041 (return)
[ Ask the servant.—Ver. 30. This would be the slave, whose office it was to mix the wine and water to the taste of the guests. He was called [oivôxooç] by the Greeks, 'pincerna' by the Romans.]

042 (return)
[ Which you have put down.—Ver. 31. That is, which she either puts upon the table, or gives back to the servant, when she has drunk.]

043 (return)
[ Touched by his mouth.—Ver. 34. This would appear to refer to some choice morsel picked out of the husband's plate, which, as a mark of attention, he might present to her.]

044 (return)
[ On his unsightly breast.—Ver. 36. This, from her position, if she reclined below her husband, she would be almost obliged to do.]

045 (return)
[ So close at hand.—Ver. 37. A breach of these injunctions would imply either a very lax state of etiquette at the Reman parties, or, what is more probable, that the present company was not of a very select character.]

048 (return)
[ Beneath the cloth.—Ver. 48. 'Vestis' means a covering, or clothing for anything, as for a couch, or for tapestry. Let us charitably suppose it here to mean the table cloth; as the passage will not admit of further examination, and has of necessity been somewhat modified in the translation.]

049 (return)
[ The conscious covering.—Ver. 50. The 'pallia,' here mentioned, are clearly the coverlets of the couch which he has before mentioned in the 41st line; and from this it is evident, that during the repast the guests were covered with them.]

050 (return)
[ Add wine by stealth.—Ver. 52. To make him fall asleep the sooner]

051 (return)
[ 'Twas summer time.—Ver. 1. In all hot climates it is the custom to repose in the middle of the day. This the Spaniards call the 'siesta.']

053 (return)
[ A part of the window.—Ver. 3. On the 'fenestræ,' or windows of the ancients, see the Notes to the Pontic Epistles, Book iii. Ep. iii. 1. 5, and to the Metamorphoses, Book xiv. 1. 752. He means that one leaf of the window was open, and one shut.]

054 (return)
[ Corinna.—Ver. 9. In the Fourth Book of the Tristia, Elegy x. 1. GO, he says, 'Corinna, (so called by a fictitious name) the subject of song through the whole city, had imparted a stimulus to my geuius.' It has been supposed by some Commentators, that under this name he meant Julia, either the daughter or the grand-daughter of the emperor Augustus, but there seems really to be no ground for such a belief; indeed, the daughter of Augustus had passed middle age, when Ovid was still in boyhood. It is most probable that Corinna was ouly an ideal personage, existing in the imagination of the Poet; and that he intended the name to apply to his favourite mistress for the time being, as, though he occasionally denies it, still, at other times, he admits that his passion was of the roving kind. There are two females mentioned in history of the name of Coriuna. One was a Theban poetess, who excelled in Lyric composition, and was said to have vanquished Pindar himself in a Lyric contest; while the other was a native of Thespiæ, in Bceotia. 'The former, who was famous for both her personal charms and her mental endowments, is supposed to have suggested the use of the name to Ovid.]

055 (return)
[ Clothed in a tunic.—Ver. 9. 'Tunica' was the name of the under-garment with both sexes among the Romans. When the wearer was out of doors, or away from home, it was fastened round the waist with a belt or girdle, but when at home and wishing to be entirely at ease, it was, as in the present instance, loose or ungirded. Both sexes usually wore two tunics. In female dress, Varro seems to call the outer tunic 'subucula,' and the 'interior tunica' by the name also of 'indusium.' The outer tunic was also called 'stola,' and, with the 'palla' completed the female dress. The 'tunica interior,' or what is here called tunica,' was a simple shift, and in early times had no sleeves. According to Nonius, it fitted loosely on the body, and was not girded when the 'stola' or outer tunic was put on. Poor people, who could not afford to purchase a 'toga,' wore the tunic alone; whence we find the lower classes called by the name of 'tunicati.']

056 (return)
[ Her flowing hair.—Ver. 10. 'Dividuis,' here means, that her hair was scattered, flowing over her shoulders and not arranged on the head in a knot.]

057 (return)
[ Semiramis.—Ver. 11. Semiramis was the wife of Ninus, king of Babylon, and was famous for her extreme beauty, and the talent which she displayed as a ruler. She was also as unscrupulous in her morals as the fair one whom the Poet is now describing.]

058 (return)
[ And Lais.—Ver. 12. There are generally supposed to have beén two famous courtesans of the name of Lais. The first was carried captive, when a child, from Sicily, in the second year of the 91st Olympiad, and being taken to Corinth, became famous throughout Greece for her extreme beauty, and the high price she put upon her favours. Many of the richest and most learned men resorted to her, and became smitten by her charms. The second Lais was the daughter of Alcibiades, by his mistress, Timandra. When Demosthenes applied for a share of her favours, she made the extravagant demand of ten thousand drachmae, upon which, regaining his wisdom (which had certainly forsaken him for a time) he said that he would not purchase repentance at so high a price.]

059 (return)
[ In its thinness.—Ver. 13. Possibly it was made of Coan cloth, if Corinna was as extravagant as she was vicious.]

060 (return)
[ The cruel fetter—Ver. 1. Among the Romans, the porter was frequently bound by a chain to his post, that he might not forsake it.]

062 (return)
[ Watches of the keepers.—Ver. 7. Properly, the 'excubiæ' were the military watches that were kept on guard, either by night or day, while the term 'vigiliæ,' was only applied to the watch by night. He here alludes to the watch kept by jealous men over their wives.]

063 (return)
[ Spectres that flit by night.—Ver. 13. The dread of the ghosts of the departed entered largely among the Roman superstitions. See an account of the Ceremony, in the Fifth Book of the Fasti, 1. 422, et seq., for driving the ghosts, or Lemures, from the house.]

064 (return)
[ Ready for the whip—Ver. 19. See the Note to the 81st line of the Epistle of De'ianira to Hercules. Ovid says, that he has often pleaded for him to his mistress; indeed, the Roman ladies often showed more cruelty to the slaves, both male and female, than the men did to the male slaves.]

065 (return)
[ As you wish.—Ver. 28. Of course it would be the porter's wish that the night should pass quickly on, as he would be relieved in the morning, and was probably forbidden to sleep during the night.]

066 (return)
[ Hours of the night pass on.—Ver. 24. This is an intercalary line, being repeated after each seventh one.]

067 (return)
[ From the door-post.—Ver. 24. The fastenings of the Roman doors consisted of a bolt placed at the bottom of eacn 'foris,' or wing of the door, which fell into a socket made in the sill. By way of additional precaution, at night, the front door was secured by a bar of wood or iron, here called 'sera,' which ran across, and was inserted in sockets on each side of the doorway. Hence it was necessary to remove or strike away the bar, 'excutere seram,' before the door could be opened.]

068 (return)
[ Water of the slave.—Ver. 26. Water was the principal beverage of the Roman slaves, but they were allowed a small quantity of wiue, which was increased on the Saturnalia. 'Far,' or 'spelt,' formed their general sustenance, of which they received one 'libra' daily. Salt and oil were also allowed them, and sometimes fruit, but seldom vegetables. Flesh meat seems not to have been given to them.]

069 (return)
[ About my temples.—Ver. 37. 'Circa mea tempora,' literally, 'around my temples' This-expression is used, because it was supposed that the vapours of excessive wine affect the brain. He says that he has only taken a moderate quantity of wine, although the chaplet falling from off his hair would seem to bespeak the contrary.]

073 (return)
[ Otherwise I myself!—Ver. 57. Heinsius thinks that this and the following line are spurious.]

074 (return)
[ Holding in my torch—Ver. 58. Torches were usually carried by the Romans, for their guidance after sunset, and were generally made of wooden staves or twigs, bound by a rope around them, in a spiral form, or else by circular bands at equal distances. The inside of the torch was filled with flax, tow, or dead vegetable matter, impregnated with pitch, wax, rosin, oil, or other inflammable substances.]

075 (return)
[ Love and wine.—Ver. 59. He seems, by this, to admit that he has taken more than a moderate quantity of wine, 'modicum vinum,' as he says above.]

076 (return)
[ Anxieties of the prison.—Ver. 64. He alludes to the 'ergastulum,' or prison for slaves, that was attached to most of the Roman farms, whither the refractory slaves were sent from the City to work in chains. It was mostly under ground, and, was lighted with narrow windows, too high from the ground to be touched with the hand. Slaves who had displeased their masters were usually sent there for a punishment, and those of uncouth habits were kept there. Plutarch says that they were established, on the conquest of Italy, in consequence of the number of foreign slaves imported for the cultivation of the conquered territory. They were finally abolished by the Emperor Hadrian.]

077 (return)
[ Bird is arousing.—Ver. 66. The cock, whom the poets universally consider as 'the harbinger of morn.']

078 (return)
[ Equally slaves.—Ver. 74. He called the doors, which were bivalve or folding-doors, his 'conservæ,' or 'fellow' slaves,' from the fact of their being obedient to the will of a slave. Plautuâ, in the Asinaria, act. ii sc. 3, has a similar expression:—'Nolo ego fores, conservas meas a te verberarier.' 'I won't have my door, my fellow-slave, thumped by you.']

080 (return)
[ Did not Ajax too.—Ver. 7. Ajax Telamon, on being refused the arms of Achilles, became mad, and slaughtered a flock of sheep, fancying that they were the sons of Atreus, and his enemy Ulysses. His shield, formed of seven ox hides, is celebrated by Homer.]

081 (return)
[ Mystic Goddesses.—Ver. 10. Orestes avenged the death of his father, Agamemnon, by slaying his own mother, Clytemnestra, together with her paramour, Ægistheus. He also attempted to attack the Furies, when they haunted him for the murder of his mother.]

082 (return)
[ Daughter of Schceneus.—Ver. 13. Atalanta, the Arcadian, or Mae-nalian, was the daughter of Iasius, and was famous for her skill in the chase. Atalanta, the Boeotian, was the daughter of Schceneus, and was renowned for her swiftness, and for the race in which she was outstripped by Hippomenes. The Poet has here mistaken the one for the other, calling the Arcadian one the daughter of Schoeneus. The story of the Arcadian Atalanta is told in the Eighth Book of the Metamorphoses, and that of the daughter of Schceneus, at the end of the Tenth Book of the same work.]

083 (return)
[ The Cretan damsel.—Ver. 16. Ariadne, the daughter of Minos, when deserted on the island of Naxos or Cea.]

084 (return)
[ Cassandra.—Ver. 17. Cassandra being a priestess, would wear the sacred fillets, 'vittse.' She was ravished by Ajax Oileus, in the temple of Minerva.]

085 (return)
[ The humblest Roman.—Ver. 29. It was not lawful to strike a freeborn human citizen. See Acts, c. xxii. v. 25. 'And as they hound him with thongs, Paul said unto the Centurion that stood by, Is it lawful for you to scourge a man that is a Roman, and uncondemncd?' This privilege does not seem to have extended to Roman women of free birth.]

086 (return)
[ Strike a Goddess.—Ver. 32. He alludes to the wound inflicted by Diomedes upon Venus, while protecting her son Æneas.]

087 (return)
[ Her hurt cheeks—Ver. 40. He implies by this, to his disgrace which has made her cheeks black and blue by his violence.]

089 (return)
[ At the middle.—Ver. 48. He says that he ought to have been satisfied with tearing her tunic down to the waist, where the girdle should have stopped short the rent; whereas, in all probability, he had torn it from the top to the bottom.]

090 (return)
[ Her free-born cheeks.—Ver. 50. It was a common practice with many of the Romans, to tear and scratch their Slaves on the least provocation.]

091 (return)
[ The Parian mountains.—Ver. 52. The marble of Paros was greatly esteemed for its extreme whiteness. Paros was one of the Cyclades, situate about eighteen miles from the island of Delos.]

092 (return)
[ Their proper order. —Ver 68. 'In statione,' was originally a military phrase, signifying 'on guard'; from which It came to be applied to any thing in its place or in proper order.]

094 (return)
[ Does she derive.—Ver. 3. He says that her name, 'Dipsas,' is derived from reality, meaning thereby that she is so called from the Greek verb [êtxpâui], 'to thirst'; because she was always thirsty, and never rose sober in the morning.]

095 (return)
[ The charms of Ææa.—Ver. 5. He alludes to the charms of Circe and Medea. According to Eustathius, Ææa was a city of Colchis.]

096 (return)
[ Turns back to its source.—Ver. 6. This the magicians of ancient times generally professed to do.]

097 (return)
[ Spinning wheel.—Ver. 8. 'Rhombus,' means a parallelogram with equal sides, but not having right angles, and hence, from the resemblance, a spinning wheel, or winder. The 'licia' were the cords or thrums of the old warp, or the threads of the old web to which the threads of the new warp were joined. Here, however, the word seems to mean the threads alone. The spinning-wheel was much used in magical incantations, not only among the Romans, but among the people of Northern and Western Europe. It is not improbable that the practice was founded on the so-called threads of destiny, and it was the province of the wizard, or sorceress, by his or her charms, to lengthen or shorten those threads, according as their customers might desire. Indeed, in some parts of Europe, at the present day, charms, in the shape of forms of words, are said to exist, which have power over the human life at any distance from the spot where they are uttered; a kind of superstition which dispenses with the more cumbrous paraphernalia of the spinning-wheel. Some Commentators think that the use of the 'licia' implied that the minds of individuals were to be influenced at the will of the enchanter, in the same way as the old thrums of the warp are caught up and held fast by the new threads; this view, however, seems to dispense with the province of the wheel in the incantation. See the Second Book of the Fasti, 1. 572. The old woman there mentioned as performing the rites of the Goddess, Tacita, among her other proceedings, 'binds the enchantea threads on the dark-coloured spinning-wheel.']

098 (return)
[ Venomous exudation.—Ver. 8. This was the substance called 'hippomanes,' which was said to flow from mares when in a prurient state. Hesiod says, that 'hippomanes' was a herb which produced madness in the horses that ate of it. Pliny, in his Eighth Book, says that it is a poisonous excrescence of the size of a fig, and of a black colour, which grows on the head of the mare, and which the foal at its birth is in the habit of biting off, which, if it neglects to do, it is not allowed by its mother to suck. This fictitious substance was said to be especially used in philtres.]

099 (return)
[ Moon was empurpled.—Ver. 12. If such a thing as a fog ever exists in Italy, he may very possibly have seen the moon of a deep red colour.]

101 (return)
[ That she, transformed.—Ver. 13. 'Versam,' 'transformed,' seems here to be a preferable reading to 'vivam,' 'alive.' Burmann, however, thinks that the 'striges' were the ghosts of dead sorcerers and wizards, and that the Poet means here, that Dipsas had the power of transforming herself into a 'strix' even while living, and that consequently 'vivam' is the proper reading. The 'strix' was a fabulous bird of the owl kind, which was said to suck the blood of children in the cradle. Seethe Sixth Book of the Fasti, 1. 141, and the Note to the passage.]

102 (return)
[ A double pupil, too.—Ver. 15. The pupil, or apple of the eye, is that part through which light is conveyed to the optic nerve. Some persons, especially females, were said by the ancients to have a double pupil, which constituted what was called 'the evil eye.' Pliny the Elder says, in his Seventh Book, that 'all women injure by their glances, who have a double pupil.' The grammarian, Haephestion, tells us, in his Fifth Book, that the wife of Candaulcs, king of Lydia, had a double pupil. Heinsius suggests, that this was possibly the case with the Ialysian Telchines, mentioned in the Seventh Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 365, 'whose eyes corrupting all things by the very looking upon them, Jupiter, utterly hating, thrust them beneath the waves of his brother.']

103 (return)
[ And their grandsires.—Ver. 17. One hypercritical Commentator here makes this remark: 'As though it were any more difficult to summon forth from the tomb those who have long been dead, than those who are iust deceased.' He forgot that Ovid had to make up his line, and that 'antiquis proavos atavosque' made three good feet, and two-thirds of another.]

105 (return)
[ The twofold doors.—Ver. 20. The doors used by the ancients were mostly bivalve, or folding doors.]

106 (return)
[ Mars in opposition.—Ver. 29. She is dabbling here in astrology, and the adverse and favourable aspects of the stars. We are to suppose that she is the agent of the young man who has seen the damsel, and she is telling her that the rising star of Venus is about to bring her good luck.]

107 (return)
[ Makes it his care.—Ver. 32. Burmann thinks that this line, as it stands at present, is not pure Latin; and, indeed, 'curæ habet,' 'makes it his care,' seems a very unusual mode of expression. He suggests another reading—'et, cultæ quod tibi défit, habet,' 'and he possesses that which is wanting for your being well-dressed,' namely, money.]

108 (return)
[ The damsel blushed.—Ver. 35. He says that his mistress blusned at the remark of the old hag, that the young man was worthy to be purchased by her, if he had not been the first to make an offer. We must suppose that here the Poet peeped through a chink of the door, as he was on the other side, listening to the discourse; or he may have reasonably guessed that she did so, from the remark made in the same line by the old woman.]

109 (return)
[ Your eyes cast down.—Ver. 37. The old woman seems to be advising her to pretend modesty, by looking down on her lap, so as not to give away even a look, until she has seen what is deposited there, and then only to give gracious glances in proportion to her present. It was the custom for the young simpletons who lavished their money on the Roman courtesans, to place their presents in the lap or bosom.]

111 (return)
[ Sabine females.—Ver. 39. The Sabines were noted for their domestic virtues. The hag hints, that the chastity of the Sabine women was only the result of their want of good breeding. 'Tatio régnante' seems to point to the good old times, in the same way as our old songsters have it, 'When good king Arthur reigned.' Tatius reigned jointly at Rome with Romulus. See the Fourteenth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 804.]

112 (return)
[ In foreign warfare.—Ver. 41. She says, that they are now in a more civilized state, than when they were fighting just without the walls of Rome; now they are solely engaged in foreign conquests, and Venus reigns in the city of the descendants of her son, Æneas.]

113 (return)
[ Dispel these frowns.—Ver. 45. The damsel has, probably, frowned here at her last remark, on which she tells her she must learn to dispense with these frowns, and that when she dispels them, 'excutit,' so many faults which might otherwise prove to her disadvantage, will be well got rid of.]

114 (return)
[ Penelope used to try.—Ver. 47. Penelope, in order that she might escape the importunity of the suitors, proposed that they should try to bend the bow of Ulysses, promising her hand to him who should prove successful. The hag, however, says that, with all her pretended chastity, Penelope only wanted to find out who was the most stalwart man among her lovers, in order that she might choose him for a husbaud.]

116 (return)
[ Graceful in his mantle.—Ver. 59. The 'palla' was especially worn by musicians. She is supposed to refer to the statue of Apollo, which was erected on the Palatine Hill by Augustus; and her design seems to be, to shew that poetry and riches are not so incompatible as the girl may, from her lover's poverty, be led to imagine.]

117 (return)
[ At a price for his person.—Ver. 63. That is to say, some rich slave who has bought his own liberty. As many of the Roman slaves were skilful at various trades and handicrafts, and were probably allowed the profits of their work after certain hours in the day, it would be no uncommon thing for a slave, with his earnings, to purchase his liberty. Some of the slaves practised as physicians, while others followed the occupation of literary men.]

118 (return)
[ Rubbed with chalk.—Ver. 64. It was the custom to mark with chalk, 'gypsum,' the feet of such slaves as were newly imported for sale.]

119 (return)
[ Busts about the halls.—Ver. 65. Instead of 'quinquatria,' which is evidently a corrupt reading, 'circum atria' has been adopted. She is advising the girl not to be led away by notions of nobility, founded on the number of 'ceræ,' or waxen busts of their ancestors, that adorned the 'atria,' or halls of her admirers. See the Fasti, Book i. line 591, and the Note to the passage; also the Epistle of Laodamia to Protesilaus, line 152.]

120 (return)
[ Nay, more, should.—Ver. 67. 'Quin' seems to be a preferable reading to-'quid?']

121 (return)
[ There will be Isis.—Ver. 74. The Roman women celebrated the festival of Isis for several successive days, and during that period they care-fully abstained from the society of men.]

127 (return)
[ By your censure.—Ver. 80. When she has offended she is to pretend a counter grievance, so as to outweigh her faults.]

128 (return)
[ A deaf hearing.—Ver. 86. Literally, 'deaf Godhead.']

129 (return)
[ A crafty handmaid.—Ver. 87. The comedies of Plautus and Terence show the part which the intriguing slaves and handmaids acted on such occasions.]

130 (return)
[ A little of many.—Ver. 89. 'Multos,' as suggested by Heinsius, is preferable to 'multi,' which does not suit the sense.]

131 (return)
[ Heap from the gleanings—Ver. 90. 'Stipula' here means 'gleanings.' She says, that each of the servants must ask for a little, and those little sums put together will make a decent amount collected from her lovers. No doubt her meaning is, that the mistress should pocket the presents thus made to the slaves.]

132 (return)
[ With a cake.—Ver. 94. The old woman tells how, when she has exhausted all other excuses for getting a present, to have the birth-day cake by her, and to pretend that it is her birth-day; in order that her lover may take the hint, and present her with a gift. The birth-day cake, according to Servius, was made of flour and honey; and being set on tabic before the guests, the person whose birth-day it was, ate the first slice, after which the others partook of it, and wished him happiness and prosperity. Presents, too, were generally made on birth-days.]

133 (return)
[ The Sacred Street."—Ver. 100. The 'via sacra,' or' Sacred Street, from the old Senate house at Rome towards the Amphitheatre, and up the Capitoline hill. For the sale of all kinds of luxuries, it seems to have had the same rank in Rome that Regent Street holds in London. The procuress tells her, that if her admirer makes no presents, she must turn the conversation to the 'Via Sacra;' of course, asking him such questions as, What is to be bought there? What is the price of such and such a thing? And then she is to say, that she is in want of this or that, but unfortunately she has no money, &c.]

134 (return)
[ Conceal your thoughts.—Ver. 103. This expression resembles the famous one attributed to Machiavelli, that 'speech was made for the concealment of the thoughts.']

[ Prove his ruin.—Ver. 103. 'Let your lips utter kind things, but let it be your intention to ruin him outright by your extravagance.']

135 (return)
[ Grant thee both no home—Ver. 113. The 'Lares,' being the household Gods, 'nullos Lares,' implies 'no home.']

136 (return)
[ Everlasting thirst.—Ver. 114. In allusion to her thirsty name; see the Note to the second line.]

138 (return)
[ Atticus.—Ver. 2. It is supposed that this Atticus was the same person to whom Ovid addresses the Fourth and Seventh Pontic Epistle in the Second Book. It certainly was not Pomponius Atticus, the friend of Cicero, who died when the Poet was in his eleventh year.]

139 (return)
[ The years which."—Ver. 5. The age for serving in the Roman armies, was from the seventeenth up to the forty-sixth year.]

140 (return)
[ Of his general.—Ver. 8. He alludes to the four night-watches of the Roman army, which succeeded each other every three hours. Each guard, or watch, consisted of four men, of whom one acted as sentry, while the others were in readiness, in case of alarm.]

142 (return)
[ The othert doors.—Ver. 20. From the writings of Terence and Plautus, as well as those of Ovid, we find that the youths of Rome were not very scrupulous about kicking down the door of an obdurate mistress.]

143 (return)
[ Thracian Rhesits.—Ver. 23. See the preceding Epistle of Pénélope to Ulysses, and the speech of Ulysses in the Thirteenth Book of the Metamorphoses.]

144 (return)
[ Cease to love.—Ver. 32. It is hard to say whether the word 'Desinat' means 'Let him leave off saying so,' or 'Let him cease to love': perhaps the latter is the preferable mode of rendering it.]

146 (return)
[ The raving prophetess.—Ver. 38. 'Mænas' literally means 'a raving female,' from the Greek word paivopai, 'to be mad.' He alludes to Cassandra when inspired with the prophetic spirit.]

147 (return)
[ At the forge.—Ver. 39. When he was detected by means of the iron net, as related in the Fourth Book of the Metamorphoses.]

148 (return)
[ A lazy inactivity.—Ver. 41. When persons wished to be at ease in their leisure moments at home, they were in the habit of loosening the girdle which fastened the tunic; from this circumstance, the term 'dis-cinctus' is peculiarly applied to a state of indolence.]

149 (return)
[ Couch and the shade.—Ver. 42. 'Lectus et umbra' means 'lying in bed and reclining in the shade.' The shade of foliage would have peculiar attractions in the cloudless climate of Italy, especially for persons naturally inclined to be idle.]

150 (return)
[ To serve.—Ver. 44. 'Æra merere' has the same meaning as 'stipendum merere,' 'to earn the pay of a soldier,' whence it came to signify 'to sene as a soldier.' The ancient accounts differ materially as to the pay which the Roman soldiers received.]

151 (return)
[ The Eurotas.—Ver. 1. The Eurotas was the river which flowed past the walls of Sparta. He is alluding to Helen.]

152 (return)
[ Amymone.—Ver. 5. She was one of the Danaides, and was carrying water, when she was attacked by a Satyr, and rescued by Neptune. See the Epistle of Hero to Leander, 1. 131, and the Note to the passage.]

153 (return)
[ Fold in his dress.—Ver. 18. The 'sinhs' of the 'toga,' among the men, and of the 'palla,' among the women, which extended in folds across the breast, was used as a pocket, in which they carried money, purses, letters, and other articles. When the party was seated, the 'sinus' would almost correspond in meaning with our word 'lap.']

154 (return)
[ Avaricious procurer.—Ver. 23. 'Leno' was a person who kept a house for the purposes of prostitution, and who generally robbed his victims of the profits of their unfortunate calling. This was called 'lenocinium,' and the trade was not forbidden, though the 'lenones' were considered 'infames,' or 'disgraced,' and thereby lost certain political rights.]

155 (return)
[ By compulsion.—Ver. 24. Being probably the slave of the 'leno,' he would use force to make her comply with his commands.]

156 (return)
[ Hired dishonestly.—Ver. 37. The evidence of witnesses was taken by the Praetor, and was called 'jusjurandum in judicio,' whereas the evidence of parties themselves was termed 'jusjurandum in jure.' It was given on oath by such as the Praetor or other judge chose to call, or as either party might propose for examination.]

157 (return)
[ The chest.—Ver. 38. The 'area' here means the strong box, or chest, in which the Romans were accustomed to place their money; they were generally made of, or bound with, iron or other metal.]

158 (return)
[ Commissioned judge.—Ver. 38. The 'judices selecti' were the 'cen-tumviri,' a body of one hundred and five officers, whose duty it was to assist the Praetor in questions where the right to property was litigated. In the Second Book of the Tristia, 1. 93, we are informed that the Poet himself filled the office of a 'judex selectus.']

159 (return)
[ That is purchased.—Ver. 39. Among the Romans, the 'patroni' defended their 'clientes' gratuitously, and it would have been deemed disgraceful for them to take a fee or present.]

160 (return)
[ He who hires.—Ver. 45. The 'conductor' was properly the person who hired the services, or the property of another, for a fixed price. The word sometimes means 'a contractor,' or the person with whom the bargain by the former party is made. See the public contract mentioned in the Fasti, Book v. 1. 293.]

161 (return)
[ The Sabine bracelets.—Ver. 49. He alludes to the fate of the Vestal virgin Tarpeia. See the Fasti, Book i. 1. 261, and Note; also the Translation of the Metamorphoses, p. 516.]

163 (return)
[ The son pierced.—Ver. 52. Alcmæon killed his mother Eriphyle, for having betrayed his father Amphiaraus. See the Second Book of the Fasti, 1. 43, and the Third Book of the Pontic Epistles, Ep. i. 1. 52, and the Notes to the passages.]

164 (return)
[ A simple necklace.—Ver. 52. See the Epistle of Deianira to Hercules, and the Tenth Book of the Metamorphoses 1. 113, with the Note to the passage.]

165 (return)
[ Soil of Alcinoiis.—Ver. 56. The fertile gardens of Alcinoiis, king of the Phæacians, are celebrated by Homer in the Odyssey.]

166 (return)
[ The straggling locks.—Ver. 1. The duty of dressing the hair of the Roman ladies was divided among several slaves, who were called by the general terms of 'cosmetæ,' and 'omatrices.' It was the province of one to curl the hair with a hot iron, called 'calamistrum,' which was hollow, and was heated in wood ashes by a slave who, from 'cinis,' 'ashes,' was called 'ciniflo.' The duty of the 'psecas' came next, whose place it was to anoint the hair. Then came that of the 'ornatrix,' who parted the curls with a comb or bodkin; this seems to have been the province of Napè.]

167 (return)
[ To be reckoned.—Ver. 2. The Nymphs of the groves were called [Footnote vanâtai ]; and perhaps from them Nape received her name, as it is evidently of Greek origin. One of the dogs of Actæon is called by the same name, in the Metamorphoses, Book iii. 1. 214.]

168 (return)
[ Giving the signale.—Ver. 4. 'Notis' may mean here, either 'hints,]

169 (return)
[ Carry these tablets.—Ver. 7. On the wax tablets, see the Note to the Pontic Epistles, Book ii. El. 9.1. 69, and the Metamorphoses, Book ix. 1. 521, with the Note.]

170 (return)
[ So well filled.—Ver. 7. 'Peraratas' literally means 'ploughed over'; which term is properly applied to the action of the 'stylus,' in ploughing through the wax upon the tablets. Suetonius relates that Julius Caesar, when he was murdered in the Senate House, pierced the arm af the assassin Cassius with his 'stylus.']

172 (return)
[ A long answer.—Ver. 19. She is to write at once, on having read his letter through. This she could do the more readily, as she could use the same tablets, smoothing the wax with the broad end of the 'graphium,' or 'stylus.']

175 (return)
[ Holding the pen.—Ver. 23. 'Graphium' was the Greek name for the 'stylus,' or pen used for writing on the wax tablets. It was generally of iron or copper, but sometimes of gold. The case in which it was kept was called 'graphiarium,' or 'graphiaria theca.']

176 (return)
[ Of worthless maple.—Ver. 28. He calls the wood of the tablets 'vile,' in comparison with their great services to him: for, according to Pliny, Book xvi. c. 15, maple was the most valued wood for tablets, next to 'citrus,' cedar, or citron wood. It was also more useful than citron, because it could be cut into leaves, or laminae, of a larger size than citron would admit of.]

178 (return)
[ Struck her foot.—Ver. 4. This is mentioned as a bad omen by Laodamia, in her Epistle to Protesilaüs, 1. 88. So in the Tenth Book of the Metamorphoses, in the shocking story of Cinyras and Myrrha; Three times was she recalled by the presage of her foot stumbling.']

180 (return)
[ The Corsican lee.—Ver. 10. From Pliny, Book xvi., we learn that the honey of Corsica was of a bitter taste, in consequence of the box-trees and yews, with which the isle abounded, and which latter, according to him, were poisonous. From Diodorus Siculus we learn that there were many turpentine trees on the island; this would not tend to improve the flavour of the honey.]

181 (return)
[ Dyed in vermilion.—Ver. 11. 'Minium,' 'red lead,' or 'vermilion,' was discovered by Callias, an Athenian, according to Theophrastus. It was sometimes mixed with the wax used for tablets: probably not the best, but that which was naturally of a bad colour. This censure of the tablets is a good illustration of the grapes being sour. In the last Elegy, before he has received his repulse, he declares the wax to be 'splen-dida,' 'of brilliaut whiteness through bleaching;' now, on the other hand, he finds, most ominously, that it is as red as blood.]

182 (return)
[ Dreadful crosses.—Ver. 18. See the First Book of the Pontic Epistlea, Ep. vi. 1. 38, and the Note to the passage.]

183 (return)
[ The screech-owl.—Ver. 20. 'Strix' here means a screech-owl; and not the fabulous bird referred to under that name, in the Sixth Book of the Fasti, and the thirteenth line of the Eighth Elegy of this Book.]

184 (return)
[ The prosy summons.—Ver. 23. 'Vadimonium legere' probably means, 'to call a man on his bail' or 'recognizances.' When the Praetor had granted an action, the plaintiff required the defendant to give security for his appearance on the day named. The defendant, on finding a surety, was said 'vades dare,' or 'vadimonium facere': and the 'vas,' or surety, was said 'spondere.' The plaintiff, if satisfied with the surety, was said 'vadari reum,' 'to let the defendant go on his sureties.']

185 (return)
[ Some judge.—Ver. 24. Some Commentators think that the word 'cognitor' here means, the attorney, or procurator of the plaintiff, who might, in his absence, carry on the cause for him. In that case they would translate 'duro,' 'shameless,' or 'impudent.' But another meaning of the word 'cognitor' is 'a judge,' or 'commissioner,' and such seems to be the meaning here, in which case 'duras' will mean 'severe,' or 'sour;' 'as,' according to one Commentator, 'judges are wont to be.' Much better would they lie amid diaries and day-books, 186 over which the avaricious huncks might lament his squandered substance. And have I then in reality as well as in name found you full of duplicity? 187 The very number of you was not one of good omen. What, in my anger, ought I to pray, but that an old age of rottenness may consume you, and that your wax may be white with nasty mould?]

186 (return)
[ And day-books.—Ver. 25. Seneca, at the end of his 19th Epistle, calls a Calendar by the name of 'Ephemeris,' while a day-book is meant by the term as used by Ausonius. The word here seems to mean a 'diary;' while 'tabula' is perhaps a 'day-book,' in which current expenses are set down, and over which the miser weeps, as the record of past extravagance.]

187 (return)
[ Full of duplicity.—Ver. 27. The word 'duplex' means either 'double,' or 'deceitful,' according to the context. He plays on this twofold meaning, and says that double though they might be, still truly deceitful they were; and that the two leaves of the tablets were of no good omen to him. Two-leaved tablets were technically called 'diptycha.']

189 (return)
[ Honour the shades.—Ver. 4. 'Parento' means 'to celebrate the funeral obsequies of one's parents.' Both the Romans and the Greeks were accustomed to visit the tombs of their relatives at certain times, and to offer sacrifices, called 'inferiæ,' or 'parentalia.' The souls of the departed were regarded by the Romans as Gods, and the oblations to them consisted of milk, wine, victims, or wreaths of flowers. The Poet here refers to the birds which arose from the funeral pile of Memnon, and wera said to revisit it annually. See the Thirteenth Book of the Metamorphoses.]

190 (return)
[ Moisture is cooling.—Ver. 7. 'Humor' seems to mean the dew, or the dampness of the night, which would tend, in a hot climate, to modify the sultriness of the atmosphere. One Commentator thinks that the word means the humours of the brain.]

192 (return)
[ To their masters.—Ver. 17. The schools at Rome were mostly kept by manumitted slaves; and we learn from the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 829, that people were not very particular about paying them.]

193 (return)
[ The cruel stripes.—Ver. 18. The punishment here mentioned was generally inflicted on the hands of the Roman school-boys, with a 'ferula,' or stalk of giant-fennel, as we learn from Juvenal, Satire 1.]

194 (return)
[ The attorney.—Ver. 19. The business of the 'jurisconsultus' was to expound and give opinions on the law, much like the chamber counsel of the present day. They were also known by the name of 'juris periti,' or 'consulti' only. Cicero gives this definition of the duty of a 'consultus.']

195 (return)
[ To become bail.—Ver. 19. This passage has given much trouble to the Commentators, but it has been well explained by Burmann, whose ideas on the subject are here adopted. The word 'sponsum' has been generally looked upon here as a noun substantive, whereas it is the active supine of the verb 'spondeo,' 'to become bail' or 'security.' The meaning then is, that some rise early, that they may go and become bail for a friend, and thereby incur risk and inconvenience, through uttering a single word, 'spondeo,' 'I become security,' which was the formula used. The obligation was coutracted orally, and for the purpose of evidencing it, witnesses were necessary; for this reason the undertaking was given, as in the present instance, in the presence of a 'jurisconsultus.']

198 (return)
[ To the pleader.—Ver. 21. 'Causidicus' was the person who pleads the cause of his client in court before the Prætor or other judges.]

199 (return)
[ What if.—Ver. 33. Heinsius and other Commentators think that this line and the next are spurious. The story of Cephalus and Procris is related at the close of the Seventh Book of the Metamorphoses.]

201 (return)
[ The Moon gave.—Ver. 43. Ovid says that Diana sent the sleep upon Endymion, whereas it was Jupiter who did so, as a punishment for his passion for Juno; he alludes to the youthfulness of the favorite of Diana, antithetically to the old age of Tithonus, the husband of Aurora.]

202 (return)
[ Two nights together.—Ver. 46. When he slept with Acmena, under the form of her husband Amphion.]

203 (return)
[ Doctoring your hair.—Ver. 1. Among the ancient Greeks, black hair was the most frequent, but that of a blonde colour was most valued. It was not uncommon with them to dye it when turning grey, so as to make it a black or blonde colour, according to the requirement of the case. Blonde hair was much esteemed by the Romans, and the ladies were in the habit of washing their hair with a composition to make it of this colour. This was called 'spuma caustica,' or, 'caustic soap,' wich was first used by the Gauls and Germans; from its name, it was probably the substance which had been used inthe present instance.]

204 (return)
[ So far as ever.—Ver. 4. By this he means as low as her ancles.]

205 (return)
[ Afraid to dress.—Ver. 5. He means to say, that it was so fine that she did not dare to curl it, for fear of injuring it.]

206 (return)
[ Just like the veils.—Ver. 6. Burmann thinks that 'fila,' 'threads,' is better here than 'vela,' and that it is the correct reading. The swarthy Seres here mentioned, were perhaps the Chinese, who probably began to import their silks into Rome about this period. The mode of producing silk does not seem to have been known to Virgil, who speaks, in the Second Book of the Georgies, of the Seres combing it off the leaves of trees. Pliny also, in his Sixth Book, gives the same account. Ovid, however, seems to refer to silkworms under the name of 'agrestes tineæ,' in the Fifteenth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 372.]

208 (return)
[ Neither the bodkin.—Ver. 15. This was the 'discerniculum,' a 'bodkin,' which was used in parting the hair.]

210 (return)
[ Bid the bodkin.—Ver. 18. The 'acus' here mentioned, was probably the 'discemicirium,' and not the 'crinale,' or hair-pin that was worn in the hair; as the latter was worn when the hair was bound up at the back of the head; whereas, judging from the length of the hair of his mistress, she most probably wore it in ringlets. He says that he never saw her snatch up the bodkin and stick it in the arm of the 'ornatrix.']

211 (return)
[ Iron and the fire.—Ver. 25. He alludes to the unnecessary application of the curling-iron to hair which naturally curled so well.]

212 (return)
[ The very locks instruct.—Ver. 30. Because they naturally assume as advantageous an appearance as the bodkin could possibly give them, when arranged with the utmost skill.]

213 (return)
[ Dione is painted.—Ver. 34. Pliny, book xxxv. c. 4, mentions a painting, by Apelles, in which Venus was represented as rising from the sea. It was placed, by Augustus, in the temple of Julius Caesar; and the lower part having become decayed, no one could be found of sufficient ability to repair it.]

214 (return)
[ Lay down the mirror.—Ver. 16. The mirror was usually held by the 'ornatrix,' while her mistress arranged her hair.]

215 (return)
[ Herbs of a rival.—Ver. 39. No person would be more likely than the 'pellex,' or concubine, to resort to charms and drugs, for the purpose of destroying the good looks of the married woman whose husband she wishes to retain.]

216 (return)
[ All bad omens.—Ver. 41. So superstitious were the Romans, that the very mention of death, or disease, was deemed ominous of ill.]

217 (return)
[ Germany will be sending.—Ver 45. Germany having been lately conquered by the arms of Augustus, he says that she must wear false hair, taken from the German captives. It was the custom to cut short the locks of the captives, and the German women were famed for the beauty of their hair.]

218 (return)
[ Sygambrian girl.—Ver. 49. The Sygambri were a people of Ger many, living on the banks of the rivers Lippe and Weser.]

219 (return)
[ For that spot.—Ver. 53. She carries a lock of the hair, which had fallen off, in her bosom.]

221 (return)
[ My tongue for hire.—Ver. 6. Although the 'patronus pleaded the cause of the 'cliens,' without reward, still, by the use of the word 'pros-tituisse,' Ovid implies that the services of the advocate were often sold at a price. It must be remembered, that Ovid had been educated for the Roman bar, which he had left in disgust.]

222 (return)
[ Mæonian bard.—Ver. 9. Strabo says, that Homer was a native of Smyrna, which was a city of Maeonia, a province of Phrygia. But Plutarch says, that he was called 'Maeonius,' from Maeon, a king of Lydia, who adopted him as his son.]

223 (return)
[ Tenedos and Ida.—Ver. 10. Tenedos, Ida, and Simois, were the scenes of some portions of the Homeric narrative. The first was near Troy, in sight of it, as Virgil says—'est in conspectu Tenedos.']

224 (return)
[ The Ascræan, tool—Ver. 11. Hesiod of Ascræa, in Boeotia, wrote chieflv upon agricultural subjects. See the Pontic Epistles, Book iv. ep. xiv. 1. 38.]

225 (return)
[ With its juices.—Ver. 11. The 'mustum' was the pure jidcc of the grape before it was boiled down and became 'sapa,' or 'defrutum.' See the Fasti, Book iv. 1. 779, and the Note to the passage.]

226 (return)
[ The son of Battus.—Ver. 13. As to the poet Callimachus, the son of Battus, see the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 367, and the Ibis, 1. 55.]

227 (return)
[ To the tragic buskin.—Ver. 15. On the 'cothurnus,' or 'buskin,' see the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 393, and the Note to the passage. Sophocles was one of the most famous of the Athenian Tragedians. He is supposed to have composed more than one hundred and twenty tragedies, of which only seven are remaining.]

228 (return)
[ Aratus.—Ver. 16. Aratus was a Greek poet, a native of Cilicia, in Asia Minor. He wrote some astronomical poems, of which one, called 'Phænomena,' still exists. His style is condemned by Quintilian, although it is here praised by Ovid. His 'Phænomena' was translated into Latin by Cicero, Germanicus Caesar, and Sextus Avienus.]

229 (return)
[ The deceitful slave.—Ver. 17. Although the plays of Menander have perished, we can judge from Terence and Plautus, how well he depicted the craftiness of the slave, the severity of the father, the dishonesty of the procuress, and the wheedling ways of the courtesan. Four of the plays of Terence are translations from Menander. See the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 369, and the Note to the passage.]

230 (return)
[ Ennius.—Ver. 19. Quintus Ennius was a Latin poet, a Calabrian by birth. He flourished about 408 years before Christ. The few fragments of his works that remain, show the ruggedness and uncouth nature of his style. He wrote the Annals of Italy in heroic verse.]

231 (return)
[ Accius.—Ver. 19. See the Second Book of the Tristia, 1. 359, and the Note to the passage.]

232 (return)
[ Of Varro.—Ver. 21. He refers to Publius Terentius Varro Attacinus, who wrote on the Argonautic expedition. See the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 439, and the Pontic Epistles, Book iv. Ep. xvi. 1. 21.]

233 (return)
[ Lucretius.—Ver. 23. Titus Lucretius Carus is referred to, whose noble poem on the Epicurean philosophy is still in existence (translated in Bohn's Classical Library). See the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 261 and 426, and the Notes to those passages.]

234 (return)
[ Tityrus.—Ver. 25. Under this name he alludes to Virgil, who introduces himself under the name of Tityrus, in his first Eclogue, See the Pontic Epistles, *Boek iv. Ep. xvi. 1. 33.]

235 (return)
[ So long as thou, Rome.—Ver. 26. His prophecy has been surpassed by the event. Rome is no longer the 'caput urbis,' but the works of Virgil are still read by all civilized nations.]

236 (return)
[ Polished Tibullus.—Ver. 28. Albius Tibullus was a Roman poet of Equestrian rank, famous for the beauty of his compositions. He was born in the same year as Ovid, but died at an early age. Ovid mentions him in the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 447 and 463, Book iv. Ep. x. 1. 52, and Book v. Ep. i. 1. 18. In the Third Book of the Amores, El. 9, will be found his Lament on the death of Tibullus.]

237 (return)
[ Gallus —Ver. 29. Cornelius Gallus was a Roman poet of considerable merit. See the Tristia, Book ii 1. 445, and the Note to the passage, and the Amores, Book iii. El. 1.]

238 (return)
[ By the East.—Ver. 29. Gallus was the Roman governor of Egypt, which was an Eastern province of Rome.]

239 (return)
[ The golden Tagus.—Ver. 34. Pliny and other authors make mention of the golden sands of the Tagus, which flowed through the province of Lusitania, now Portugal.]

240 (return)
[ The closing fire.—Ver. 41. Pliny says that the ancient Romans buried the dead; but in consequence of the bones being disturbed by continual warfare, they adopted the system of burning them.]


301 (return)
[ The watery Peligni.—Ver. 1. In the Fourth Book of the Fasti, 1. 81, and the Fourth Book of the Tristia, 1. x. El. 3, he mentions Sulmo, a town of the Peligni, as the place of his birth. It was noted for its many streams or rivulets.]

302 (return)
[ And Gyges.—Ver. 12. This giant was more generally called Gyas. He and his hundred-handed brothers, Briareus and Cæus, were the sons of Coelus and Terra.]

303 (return)
[ Verses bring down.—Ver. 23. He alludes to the power of magic spells, and attributes their efficacy to their being couched in poetic measures; from which circumstance they received the name of 'carmina.']

304 (return)
[ And by verses.—Ver. 28. He means to say that in the same manner as magic spells have brought down the moon, arrested the sun, and turned back rivers towards their source, so have his Elegiac strains been as wonderfully successful in softening the obduracy of his mistress.]

305 (return)
[ Bagous.—Ver. 1. The name Bagoas, or, as it is here Latinized. Bagous, is said to have signified, in the Persian language, 'an eunuch.' It was probably of Chaldæan origin, having that meaning. As among the Eastern nations of the present day, the more jealous of the Romans confided the care of their wives or mistresses to eunuch slaves, who were purchased at a very large price.]

306 (return)
[ Daughters of Danaus.—Ver. 4. The portico under the temple of Apollo, on the Palatine Hill, was adorned with the statues of Danaus, the son of Belus, and his forty-nine guilty daughters. It was built by Augustus, on a spot adjoining to his palace. Ovid mentions these statues in the Third Elegy of the Third Book of the Tristia, 1. 10.]

307 (return)
[ Let him go.—Ver. 20. 'Eat' seems here to mean 'let him go away' from the house; but Nisard's translation renders it 'qu'il entre,' 'let him come in.']

308 (return)
[ At the sacrifice.—Ver. 23. It is hard to say what 'si faciet tarde' means: it perhaps applies to the rites of Isis, mentioned in the 25th line.]

309 (return)
[ Linen-clad Isis.—Ver. 25. Seethe 74th line of the Eighth Elegy of the preceding Book, and the Note to the passage; and the Pontic Epistles, Book i. line 51, and the Note. The temple of Isis, at Rome, was in the Campus Martius, or Field of Mars, near the sheep market. It was noted for the intrigues and assignations of which it was the scene.]

310 (return)
[ He turns the house.—Ver. 29. As the Delphin Editor says, 'Il peut renverser la maison,' 'he can turn the house upside down.']

311 (return)
[ The masters approve..—Ver. 30. He means to say that the eunuch and his mistress will be able to do just as they please.]

312 (return)
[ An executioner.—Ver. 36. To blind the husband, by pretending harshness on the part of Bagous.]

313 (return)
[ Of the truth.—Ver. 38 This line is corrupt, and there are about ten various readings. The meaning, however, is clear; he is, by making false charges, to lead the husband away from a suspicion of the truth; and to put him, as we say, in common parlance, on the wrong scent.]

314 (return)
[ Your limited savings.—Ver. 39. 'Peculium,' here means the stock of money which a slave, with the consent of his master, laid up for his own, 'his savings.' The slaves of the Romans being not only employed in domestic offices and the labours of the field, but as agents or factors for their masters, in the management of business, and as mechanics and artisans in various trades, great profits were made through them. As they were often entrusted with a large amount of property, and considerable temptations were presented to their honesty, it became the practice to allow the slave to consider a part of his gains, perhaps a per centage, as his own; this was termed his 'peculium.' According to the strict letter of the law, the 'peculium' was the property of the master, but, by usage, it was looked upon as the property of the slave. It was sometimes agreed upon between the master and slave, that the latter should purchase his liberty with his 'peculium,' when it amounted to a certain sum. If the slave was manumitted by the owner in his lifetime, his 'peculium' was considered to be given him, with his liberty, unless it was expressly retained.]

315 (return)
[ Necks of informers.—Ver. 41. He probably alludes to informers who have given false evidence. He warns Bagous of their fate, intending to imply that both his mistress and himself will deny all, if he should attempt to criminate them.]

325 (return)
[ Tongue caused this.—Ver. 44. According to one account, his punishment was inflicted for revealing the secrets of the Gods.]

326 (return)
[ Appointed by Juno.—Ver. 45. This was Argus, whose fate is related at the end of the First Book of the Metamorphoses.]

327 (return)
[ Alas! that.—Ver. 1. He is again addressing Bagous, and begins in a strain of sympathy, since his last letter has proved of no avail with the obdurate eunuch.]

328 (return)
[ Mutilate Joys —Ver. 3. According to most accounts, Semiramis was the first who put in practice this abominable custom.]

329 (return)
[ Standard be borne.—Ver. 10. He means, that he is bound, with his mistress to follow the standard of Cupid, and not of Mars.]

330 (return)
[ Favours to advantage.—Ver. 13. 'Ponere' here means, literally, 'to put out at interest.' He tells the eunuch that he has now the opportunity of conferring obligations, which will bring him in à good interest by way of return.]

332 (return)
[ Sabine dames.—Ver. 15. Juvenal, in his Tenth Satire, 1. 293, mentions the Sabine women as examples of prudence and chastity.]

333 (return)
[ In her stateliness.—Ver. 16. Burmann would have 'ex alto' to mean 'ex alto pectore,' 'from the depths of her breast.' In such case the phrase will correspond with our expression, 'to dissemble deeply,' 'to be a deep dissembler.']

334 (return)
[ Modulates her voice.—Ver. 25. Perhaps 'flectere vocem' means what we technically call, in the musical art, 'to quaver.']

335 (return)
[ Her arms to time.—Ver. 29. Dancing was, in general, discouraged among the Romans. That here referred to was probably the pantomimic dance, in which, while all parts of the body were called into action, the gestures of the arms and hands were especially used, whence the expressions 'manus loquacissimi,' 'digiti clamosi,' 'expressive hands,' or 'fingers.' During the Republic, and the earlier periods of the Empire, women never appeared on the stage, but they frequently acted at the parties of the great. As it was deemed disgraceful for a free man to dance, the practice at Rome was probably confined to slaves, and the lowest class of the citizens. See the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 536, and the Note to the passage.]

336 (return)
[ Hippolytus.—Ver. 32. Hippolytus was an example of chastity, while Priapus was the very ideal of lustfulness.]

337 (return)
[ Heroines of old.—Ver. 33. He supposes the women of the Heroic ages to have been of extremely tall stature. Andromache was remarkable for her height.]

338 (return)
[ The brunette.—Ver. 39. 'Flava,' when coupled with a female name, generally signifies 'having the hair of a flaxen,' or 'golden colour'; here, however, it seems to allude to the complexion, though it would be difficult to say what tint is meant. Perhaps an American would have no difficulty in translating it 'a yellow girl.' In the 43rd line, he makes reference to the hair of a 'flaxen,' or 'golden colour.']

339 (return)
[ Tablets rubbed out.—Ver. 5. If 'deletæ' is the correct reading here, it must mean 'no tablets from which in a hurry you 'have rubbed off the writing.' 'Non interceptæ' has been suggested, and it would certainly better suit the sense. 'No intercepted tablets have, &c.']

342 (return)
[ The wine on table.—Ver. 14. The wine was probably on this occasion placed on the table, after the 'coena,' or dinner. The Poet, his mistress, and his acquaintance, were, probably, reclining on their respective couches; he probably, pretended to fall asleep to watch, their conduct, which may have previously excited his suspicions.]

343 (return)
[ Moving your eyebrows.—Ver. 15. See the Note to the 19th line of the Fourth Elegy of the preceding Book.]

344 (return)
[ Were not silent.—Ver. 17. See the Note to the 20th line of the same Elegy.]

345 (return)
[ Traced over with wine.—Ver. 18. See the 22nd and 26th lines of the same Elegy.]

346 (return)
[ Your discourse.—Ver. 19. He seems to mean that they were pretending to be talking on a different subject from that about which they were really discoursing, but that he understood their hidden meaning. See a similar instance mentioned in the Epistle of Paris to Helen, 1. 241.]

347 (return)
[ Hand of a master.—Ver. 30. He asserts the same right over her favours, that the master (dominus) does over the services of the slave.]

348 (return)
[ New-made husband.—Ter. 36. Perhaps this refers to the moment of taking off the bridal veil, or 'flammeum,' when she has entered her husband's house.]

349 (return)
[ Of her steeds.—Ver. 38. When the moon appeared red, probably through a fog, it was supposed that she was being subjected to the spells of witches and enchanters.]

350 (return)
[ Assyrian ivory.—Ver. 40. As Assyria adjoined India, the word 'Assyrium' is here used by poetical licence, as really meaning 'Indian.']

351 (return)
[ Woman has stained.—Ver. 40. From this we learn that it was the custom of the Lydians to tint ivory of a pink colour, that it might not turn yellow with age.]

352 (return)
[ Of this quality.—Ver. 54. 'Nota,' here mentioned, is literally the mark which was put upon the 'amphorae,' or 'cadi,' the 'casks' of the ancients, to denote the kind, age, or quality of the wine. Hence the word figuratively means, as in the present instance, 'sort,' or 'quality.' Our word 'brand' has a similar meaning. The finer kinds of wine were drawn off from the 'dolia,' or large vessels, in which they were kept into the 'amphoræ,' which were made of earthenware or glass, and the mouth of the vessel was stopped tight by a plug of wood or cork, which was made impervious to the atmosphere by being rubbed over with pitch, clay, or a composition of gypsum. On the outside, the title of the wine was painted, the date of the vintage being denoted by the names of the Consuls then in office: and when the vessels were of glass, small tickets, called 'pittacia,' were suspended from them, stating to a similar effect. For a full account of the ancient wines, see Dr. Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.]

353 (return)
[ The imitative bird.—Ver. 1. Statius, in his Second Book, calls the parrot 'Humanæ sollers imitator linguæ,' 'the clever imitator of the human voice.']

354 (return)
[ The long trumpet.—Ver. 6. We learn from Aulus Gellius, that the trumpeters at funerals were called 'siticines.' They headed the funeral procession, playing mournful strains on the long trumpet, 'tuba,' here mentioned. These were probably in addition to the 'tibicines,' or 'pipers,' whose number was limited to ten by Appius Claudius, the Censor. See the Sixth Book of the Fasti, 1. 653.]

360 (return)
[ Affectionate turtle-dove.—Ver. 12. This turtle-dove and the parrot had been brought up in the same cage together. He probably refers to these birds in the thirty-eighth line of the Epistle of Sappho to Phaon where he mentions the turtle-dove as being black. This Elegy is remarkable for its simplicity and pathetic beauty, and can hardly fail to remind the reader of Cowper's Elegies, on the death of the bullfinch, and that of his pet hare.]

361 (return)
[ The Phocian youth.—Ver. 15. He alludes to the friendship of Orestes and Pylades the Phocian, the son of Strophius.]

362 (return)
[ So prettily.—Ver. 24. 'Bene' means here, 'prettily,' or 'cleverly,' rather than 'distinctly,' which would be inconsistent with the signification of blæsus.]

363 (return)
[ All their battles —Ver. 27. Aristotle, in the Eighth Chapter of the Ninth Book of his History of Animals, describes quails or ortolans, and partridges, as being of quarrelsome habits, and much at war among themselves.]

364 (return)
[ The foreboder.—Ver. 34. Festus Avienus, in his Prognostics, mentions the jackdaw as foreboding rain by its chattering.]

366 (return)
[ Armed Minerva.—Ver. 35. See the story of the Nymph Coronis, in the Second Book of the Metamorphoses.]

367 (return)
[ After nine ages.—Ver. 36. Pliny makes the life of the crow to last for a period of three hundred years.]

368 (return)
[ Destined numbers.—Ver. 40. 'Numeri' means here, the similar. parts of one whole: 'the allotted portions of human life.']

369 (return)
[ Seventh day was come.—Ver. 45. Hippocrates, in his Aphorisms, mentions the seventh, fourteenth, and twentieth, as the critical days in a malady. Ovid may here possibly allude to the seventh day of fasting, which was supposed to terminate the existence of the person so doing.]

370 (return)
[ Corinna, farewell.—Ver. 48. It may have said 'Corinna;' but Ovid must excuse us if we decline to believe that it said 'vale,' 'farewell,' also; unless, indeed, it had been in the habit of saying so before; this, perhaps, may have been the case, as it had probably often heard the Poet say 'vale' to his mistress.]

371 (return)
[ The Elysian hill.—Ver. 49. He kindly imagines a place for the souls of the birds that are blessed.]

372 (return)
[ By his words.—Ver. 58. His calling around him, in human accents, the other birds in the Elysian fields, is ingeniously and beautifully imagined.]

377 (return)
[ This very tomb.—Ver. 61. This and the following line are considered by Heinsius to be spurious, and, indeed, the next line hardly looks like the composition of Ovid.]

378 (return)
[ Am I then.—Ver. 1. 'Ergo' here is very expressive. 'Am I always then to be made the subject of fresh charges?']

379 (return)
[ Long-eared ass.—Ver. 15. Perhaps the only holiday that the patient ass got throughout the year, was in the month of June, when the festival of Vesta was celebrated, and to which Goddess he had rendered an important service. See the Sixth Book of the Fasti, 1. 311, et seq.]

380 (return)
[ Skilled at tiring.—Ver. 17. She was the 'ornatrix,' or 'tiring woman' of Corinna. As slaves very often received their names from articles of dress, Cypassis was probably so called from the garment called 'cypassis,' which was worn by women and men of effeminate character, and extended downwards to the ancles.]

387 (return)
[ With the whip.—Ver. 22. From this we see that the whip was applied to the female slaves, as well as the males.]

388 (return)
[ Carpathian ocean..—Ver. 20. See the Metamorphoses, Book xi.1. 249, and the Note to this passage.]

389 (return)
[ Swarthy Cypassis.—Ver. 22. From this expression, she was probably a native of Egypt or Syria.]

390 (return)
[ With his spear.—Ver. 7. He alludes to the cure of Telephus by the aid of the spear of Achilles, which had previously wounded him.]

391 (return)
[ Cottages of thatch.—Ver. 18. In the First Book of the Fasti, 1.199, he speaks of the time when 'a little cottage received Quiriuus, the begotten of Mars, and the sedge of the stream afforded him a scanty couch.' The straw-thatched cottage of Romulus was preserved at Rome for many centuries. See the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 184, and the Note to the passage.]

392 (return)
[ Off to the fields.—Ver. 19. The 'emeriti,' or veterans of the Roman legions, who had served their full time, received a regular discharge, which was called 'missio,' together with a bounty, either in money, or an allotment of land. Virgil was deprived of his property near Mantua, by the officers of Augustus; and in his first Eclogue, under the name of Tityrus, he relates how he obtained restitution of it on applying to the Emperor.]

393 (return)
[ Free from the race.—Ver. 20. Literally, 'the starting place.']

394 (return)
[ Wand of repose—Ver. 22. For an account of the 'rudis,' and the privilege it conferred, see the Tristia, Book, iv, El. 8. 1. 24.]

395 (return)
[ Græcinus.—Ver. 1. He addresses three of his Pontic Epistles, namely, the Sixth of the First Book, the Sixth of the Second Book, and the Ninth of the Fourth Book, to his friend Græcinus. In the latter Epistle, he congratulates him upon his being Consul elect.]

396 (return)
[ Without my arms.—Ver. 3. 'Inermis,' may be rendered, 'off my guard.']

397 (return)
[ Like the skiff.—Ver. 10. 'Pliaselos' is perhaps here used as a general name for a boat or skiff; but the vessel which was particularly so called, was long and narrow, and probably received its name from its resemblance to a kidney-bean, which was called 'ptaselus.' The 'phaseli' were chiefly used by the Egyptians, and were of various sizes, from that of a mere boat to a vessel suited for a long voyage. Appian mentions them as being a medium between ships of war and merchant vessels. Being built for speed, they were more noted for their swiftness than for their strength. Juvenal, Sat. xv, 1. 127, speaks of them as being made of clay; but, of course, that can only refer to 'pha-seli' of the smallest kind.]

401 (return)
[ That are thin.—Ver 23. The Poet was of slender figure.]

402 (return)
[ Arm his breast —Ver. 31. He alludes to the 'lorica,' or cuirass, which was worn by the soldiers.]

403 (return)
[ Of his battles.—Ver. 36. He probably was thinking at this moment of the deaths of Cornelius Gallus, and T. Haterius, of the Equcstriai order, whose singular end is mentioned by Valerius Maximus, 11. ix c. 12, s. 8, and by Pliny the Elder, B. vii., c. 53.]

404 (return)
[ The meeting rocks.—Ver 3. See the 121st line of the Epistle of Medea to Jason, and the Note to the passage.]

405 (return)
[ Tinted pebbles.—Ver. 13. The 'picti lapilli' are probably camelians, which are found on the sea shore, and are of various tints.]

406 (return)
[ The recreation.—Ver. 14. 'Mora,' 'delay,' is put here for that which causes the delay. 'That is a pleasure which belongs to the shore.']

407 (return)
[ In what Malea.—Ver. 20. Propertius and Virgil also couple Malea, the dangerous promontory on the South of Laconia, with the Syrtes or quicksands of the Libyan coast.]

409 (return)
[ Stars of the fruitful Leda.—Ver. 29. Commentators are divided upon the exact meaning of this line. Some think that it refers to the Constellations of Castor and Pollux, which were considered to be favourable to mariners; and which Horace mentions in the first line of his Third Ode, B. i., 'Sic fratres Helenae, lucida sidera,' 'The brothers of Helen, those brilliant stars.' Others think that it refers to the luminous appearances which were seen to settle on the masts of ships, and were called by the name of Castor and Pollux; they were thought to be of good omen when both appeared, but unlucky when seen singly.]

410 (return)
[ In the couch.—Ver. 31. 'Torus' most probably means, in this place a sofa, on which the ladies would recline while reading.]

411 (return)
[ Amusing books.—Ver. 31. By using the diminutive 'libellus' here, he probably means some light work, such as a bit of court scandal, of a love poem.]

412 (return)
[ My Divinities.—Ver. 44. See the Second Epistle, 1. 126, and the Note to the passage.]

413 (return)
[ As a table.—Ver. 48. This denotes his impatience to entertain her once again, and to hear the narrative of her adventures.]

414 (return)
[ Though they be fictions.—Ver. 53. He gives a sly hit here at the tales of travellers.]

415 (return)
[ Twice five years.—Ver. 9. Or the 'lustrum' of the Romans, see the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 166, and the Tristia, Book iv. El. 10.]

416 (return)
[ And the cause.—Ver. 17. This passage is evidently misunderstood in Nisard's translation, 'Je ne serai pas non plus la caus d'une nouvelle guerre,' 'I will never more be the cause of a new war.']

417 (return)
[ A female again.—Ver. 22. He alludes to the war in Latium, between Æneas and Turnus, for the hand of Lavinia, the daughter of Latinus and Amata. See the narrative in the Fourteenth book of the Metamorphoses.]

421 (return)
[ 'Twas the females—Ver. 23. The rape of the Sabines, by the contrivance of Romulus, is here alluded to. The narrative will be found in the Third Book of the Fasti, 1. 203, et seq. It has been suggested, but apparently without any good grounds, that Tarpeia is here alluded to.]

422 (return)
[ Thou who dost.—Ver. 7. Io was said to be worshipped under the name of Isis.]

423 (return)
[ Parætonium.—Ver. 7. This city was situate at the Canopic mouth of the Nile, at the Western extremity of Egypt, adjoining to Libya. According to Strabo, its former name was Ammonia. It still preserves its ancient name in a great degree, as it is called al-Baretoun.]

424 (return)
[ Fields of Canopus.—Ver. 7. Canopus was a city at one of the mouths of the Nile, now called Aboukir. The epithet 'genialis,' seems to have been well deserved, as it was famous for its voluptuousness. Strabo tells us that there was a temple there dedicated to Serapis, to which multitudes resorted by the canal from Alexandria. He says that the canal was filled, night and day, with men and women dancing and playing music on board the vessels, with the greatest licentiousness. The place was situate on an island of the Nile, and was about fifteen miles distant from Alexandria. Ovid gives a similar description of Alexandria, in the Tristia, Book i. El. ii. 1. 79. See the Note to the passage.]

425 (return)
[ Memphis.—Ver. 8. Memphis was a city situate on the North of Egypt, on the banks of the Nile. It was said to have been built by Osirit.]

426 (return)
[ Pharos.—Ver. 8. See the Metamorphoses, Book ix. 1. 772, and Book xv. 1. 287, with the Notes to the passages.]

428 (return)
[ By thy sistra. —Ver. 11. For an account of the mystic 'sistra' of Isis, see the Pontic Epistles, Book i. El. i. 1. 38, and the Note.]

429 (return)
[ Anubis. —Ver. 11. For an account of Anuhis, the Deity with the dog's head, see the Metamorphoses, Book ix. 1. 689, and the Note.]

430 (return)
[ Osiris.—Ver. 12. See the Metamorphoses, Book ix. 1. 692, and the Note to the passage.]

431 (return)
[ The sluggish serpent.—Ver. 13. Macrobius tells us, that the Egyptians accompanied the statue of Serapis with that of an animal with three heads, the middle one that of a lion, the one to the right, of a dog, and that to the left, of a ravenous wolf; and that a serpent was represented encircling it in its folds, with its head below the right hand of the statue of the Deity. To this the Poet possibly alludes, or else to the asp, which was common in the North of Egypt, and perhaps, was looked upon as sacred. If so, it is probable that the word 'pigra,' 'sluggish,' refers to the drowsy effect produced by the sting of the asp, which was generally mortal. This, indeed, seems the more likely, from the fact of the asp being clearly referred to, in company with these Deities, in the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 93; which see, with the Note to the passage.]

432 (return)
[ The horned Apis.—Ver. 14. See the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 691, and the Note to the passage.]

433 (return)
[ Thy features.—Ver. 15. Isis is here addressed, as being supposed to be the same Deity as Diana Lucina, who was invoked by pregnant and parturient women. Thus Isis appears to Telethusa, a Cretan woman, in her pregnancy, in the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 665, et seq.]

434 (return)
[ Thy appointed days.—Ver. 17. Votaries who were worshipping in the temples of the Deities sat there for a considerable time, especially when they attended for the purpose of sacrifice. In the First Book of the Pontic Epistles, Ep. i. 1. 50, Ovid says, 'I have beheld one who confessed that he had offended the Divinity of Isis, clothed in linen, sitting before he altars of Isis.']

435 (return)
[ On which.—Ver. 18. 'Queis' seems a preferable reading to 'qua.']

436 (return)
[ The Galli.—Ver. 18. Some suppose that Isis and Cybele were the same Divinity, and that the Galli, or priests of Cybele, attended the rites of their Goddess under the name of Isis. It seems clear, from the present passage, that the priests of Cybele, who were called Galli, did perform the rites of Isis, but there is abundant proof that these were considered as distinct Deities. In imitation of the Corybantes, the original priests of Cybele, they performed her rites to the sound of pipes and tambourines, and ran to and fro in a frenzied manner.]

437 (return)
[ With thy laurels.—Ver. 18. See the Note to the 692nd line of the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses. While celebrating the search for the limbs of Osiris, the priests uttered lamentations, accompanied with the sound of the 'sistra'; but when they had found the body, they wore wreaths of laurel, and uttered cries, signifying their joy.]

438 (return)
[ Ilithyia.—Ver. 21. As to the Goddess Ilithyia, see the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 283, and the Note to the passage.]

439 (return)
[ With their bucklers.—Ver. 2. Armed with 'peltæ,' or bucklers, like the Amazons.]

440 (return)
[ The sand must.—Ver. 8. This figure is derived from the gladiatorial fights of the amphitheatre, where the spot on which they fought was strewed with sand, both for the purpose of giving a firm footing to the gladiators, and of soaking up the blood that was shed.]

441 (return)
[ Again throw stones.—Ver. 12. He alludes to Deucalion and Pyr-rha. See the First Book of the Metamorphoses.]

442 (return)
[ Ilia had destroyed.—Ver. 16. Romulus was her son. See her story, related at the beginning of the Third Book of the Fasti.]

443 (return)
[ Why pierce.—Ver. 27. He alludes to the sharp instruments which she had used for the purpose of procuring abortion: a practice which Canace tells Macareus that her nurse had resorted to. Epistle xi. 1. 40—43.]

444 (return)
[ Armenian dens.—Ver. 35. See the Metamorphoses, Book viii. 1. 126, and the Note to the passage.]

445 (return)
[ Many a time.—Ver. 38. He seems here to speak of this practice as being frequently resorted to.]

446 (return)
[ She deserved it.—Ver. 40. From this, it would seem that the practice was considered censurable; but, perhaps it was one of those cases whose heinousness is never fully discovered till it has brought about its own punishment.]

447 (return)
[ O ring.—Ver. 1. On the rings in use among the ancients, see the note to the First Book of the Aruores, El. iv., 1. 26. See also the subject of the seventh Elegy of the First Book of the Tristia.]

448 (return)
[ Carpathian old man.—Ver. 10. For some account of Proteus, who is here referred to, see the First Book of the Fasti, 1. 363, and the Note.]

449 (return)
[ Be able to seal—Ver. 15. From this, it appears to have been a signet ring.]

450 (return)
[ Touch the lips.—Ver. 17. See the Tristia, Book v., El. iv. 1 5, and the Note to the passage.]

459 (return)
[ In her desk.—Ver. 19. 'Loculi' used in the plural, as in the present instance, signified a receptacle with compartments, similar, perhaps, to our writing desks; a small box, coffer, casket, or cabinet of wood or ivory, for keeping money or jewels.]

460 (return)
[ Sulmo.—Ver. 1. See the Note to the first line of the First Elegy of this Book.]

461 (return)
[ Pelignian land.—Ver. 1. From Pliny the Elder, we learn that the Peligni were divided into three tribes, the Corfinienses, the Superequani, and the Sulmonenses.]

462 (return)
[ Constellation.—Ver. 4. He alludes to the heat attending the Dog star, see the Fasti, Book iv., 1. 939, and the Note to the passage.]

463 (return)
[ The thin soil.—Ver. 8. 'Rarus ager' means, a 'thin' or 'loose' soil, which was well suited for the cultivation of the grape.]

464 (return)
[ That bears its berries.—Ver. 8. In Nisard's translation, the words 'bacciferam Pallada,' which mean the olive, are rendered 'L'amande Caere Pallas,' 'the almond dear to Pallas.']

465 (return)
[ Lengthened tracks.—Ver. 16. To the Delphin Editor this seems a silly expression.]

466 (return)
[ The stormy Alps.—Ver. 19. See the Metamorphoses, Book ii. 1. 226, and the Note to the passage.]

467 (return)
[ The obedient stream.—Ver. 35. This was a method of irrigation in agriculture, much resorted to by the ancients.]

468 (return)
[ Fierce Cilicians —Ver. 39. The people of the interior of Cilicia, in Asia Minor, were of rude and savage manners while those on the coast had been engaged in piracy, until it had been effectually suppressed by Pompey.]

469 (return)
[ Britons painted green.—Ver. 39. The Britons may be called 'virides,' from their island being surrounded by the sea; or, more probably, from the colour with which they were in the habit of staining their bodies. Cæsar says, in the Fifth Book of the Gallic war, 'The Britons stain themselves with woad, 'vitrum,' or 'glastum,' which produces a blue colour: and thus they become of a more dreadful appearance in battle.' The conquest of Britain, by Cæsar, is alluded to in the Fifteenth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 752.]

471 (return)
[ Loves the vine.—Ver. 41. The custom of training vines by the side of the elm, has been alluded to in a previous Note. See also the Metamorphoses, Book xiv. 1. 663, and the Note to the passage.]

472 (return)
[ As the nags.—Ver. 49. The 'manni' were used by the Romans for much the same purpose as our coach-horses; and were probably more noted for their fleetness than their strength; They were a small breed, originally imported from Gaul, and the possession of them was supposed to indicate the possession of considerable wealth. As the 'esseda' was a small vehicle, and probably of light structure, we must not be surprised at Corinna being in the habit of driving for herself. The distance from Rome to Sulmo was about ninety miles: and the journey, from his expressions in the fifty-first and fifty-second lines, must have been over hill and dale.]

473 (return)
[ Your little chaise.—Ver. 49. For an account of the 'essedum,' or 'esseda,' see the Pontic Epistles, Book ii. Ep. 10, 1. 34, and the Note to the passage.]

474 (return)
[ King of Pkthia.—Ver. 17.] He alludes to the marriage of Thetis, the sea Goddess, to Peleus, the king of Phthia, in Thessaly.]

475 (return)
[ His anvil.—Ver. 19. It is a somewhat curious fact, that the anvils of the ancients exactly resembled in form and every particular those used at the present day.]

476 (return)
[ Becomingly united.—Ver. 22. He says, that in the Elegiac measure the Pentameter, or line of five feet, is not unhappily matched with the Hexameter, or heroic line of six feet.]

477 (return)
[ Disavowed by you.—Ver. 26. 'Voids' seems more agreable to the sense of the passage, than 'nobis.' 'to be denied by us;' as, from the context, there was no fear of his declining her affection.]

478 (return)
[ That she is Corinna.—Ver. 29. This clearly proves that Corinna was not a real name; it probably was not given by the Poet to any one of his female acquaintances in particular.]

479 (return)
[ Thy poem onwards.—Ver. 1. Macer translated the Iliad of Homer into Latin verse, and composed an additional poem, commencing at the beginning of the Trojan war, and coming down to the wrath of Achilles, with which Homer begins.]

480 (return)
[ I, Macer.—Ver. 3. Æmilius Macer is often mentioned by Ovid in his works. In the Tristia, Book iv. Ep. 10,1.41, he says, 'Macer, when stricken in years, many a time repeated to me his poem on birds, and each serpent that is deadly, each herb that is curative.' The Tenth Epistle of the Second Book of Pontic Epistles is also addressed to him, in which Ovid alludes to his work on the Trojan war, and the time when they visited Asia Minor and Sicily together. He speaks of him in the Sixteenth Epistle of the Fourth Book, as being then dead. Macer was a native of Verona, and was the intimate friend of Virgil, Ovid, and Tibullus. Some suppose that the poet who wrote on natural history, was not the same with him who wrote on the Trojan war; and, indeed, it does not seem likely, that he who was an old man in the youth of Ovid, should be the same person to whom he writes from Pontus, when about fifty-six years of age. The bard of Ilium died in Asia.]

481 (return)
[ Tragedy grew apace.—Ver. 13. He alludes to his tragedy of Medea, which no longer exists. Quintilian thus speaks of it: 'The Medea of Ovid seems to me to prove how much he was capable of, if he had only preferred to curb his genius, rather than indulge it.']

482 (return)
[ Sabinus return.—Ver. 27. He represents his friend, Sabinus, here in the character of a 'tabellarius,' or 'letter carrier,' going with extreme speed (celer) to the various parts of the earth, and bringing back the answers of Ulysses to Penelope, Hippolytus to Phaedra, Æneas to Dido, Demophoôn to Phyllis, Jason to Hypsipyle, and Phaon to Sappho. All these works of Sabinus have perished, except the Epistle of Ulysses to Penelope, and Demophoôn to Phyllis. His Epistle from Paris to Oenonc, is not here mentioned. See the Pontic Epistles, Book iv. Ep. xvi. 1. 13, and the Note to the passage.]

483 (return)
[ Bring back letters.—Ver. 28. As the ancients had no establishment corresponding to our posts, they employed special messengers called 'tabellarii,' for the conveyance of their letters.]

484 (return)
[ Vowed to Phobus.—Ver. 34. Sappho says in her Epistle, that if Phaon should refuse to return, she will dedicate her lyre to Phobus, and throw herself from the Leucadian rock. This, he tells her, she may now-do, as by his answer Phaon declines to return.]

485 (return)
[ Pain in her head.—Ver. 11. She pretended a head-ache, when nothing wras the matter with her; in order that too much familiarity, in the end, might not breed contempt.]

486 (return)
[ A surfeit of love.—Ver. 25. 'l'inguis amor' seems here to mear a satisfied 'ora 'pampered passion;' one that meets with no repulse.]

487 (return)
[ Enclosed Danaë.—Ver. 27. See the Metamorphoses, Book iv., 1.]

488 (return)
[ The dogs bark.—Ver. 40. The women of loose character, among the Romans, were much in the habit of keeping dogs, for the protection of their houses.]


501 (return)
[ Than the other.—Ver. 8. 'He alludes to the unequal lines of the Elegiac measure, which consists of Hexameters and Pentameters. In personifying Elegy, he might have omitted this remark, as it does not add to the attractions of a lady, to have one foot longer than the other; he says, however, that it added to her gracefulness.]

502 (return)
[ The Lydian buskin.—Ver. 14. As Lydia was said to have sent colonists to Etruria, some Commentators think that the word 'Lydius' here means 'Etrurian and that the first actors at Rome were Etrurians. But, as the Romans derived their notions of tragedy from the Greeks, we may conclude that Lydia in Asia Minor is here referred to; for we learn from Herodotus and other historians, that the Greeks borrowed largely from the Lydians.]

503 (return)
[ Drunken revels.—Ver. 17. He probably alludes to the Fourth Elegy of the First, and the Fifth Elegy of the Second Book of the 'Amores.']

505 (return)
[ Mighty inspiration.—Ver. 23. The 'thyrsus' was said to have been first used by the troops of Bacchus, in his Indian expedition, when, to deceive the Indians, they concealed the points of their spears amid leaves of the vine and ivy. Similar weapons were used by his devotees when worshipping him, which they brandished to and fro. To be touched with the thyrsus of Bacchus, meant 'to be inspired with poetic frenzy.' See the Notes to the Metamorphoses, Book iii. 1. 542.]

506 (return)
[ In unequal numbers.—Ver. 37. Some have supposed, that allusion is made to the Tragedy of Medea, which Ovid had composed, and that it had been written in Elegiac measure. This, however, does not seem to be the meaning of the passage. Elegy justly asks Tragedy, why, if she has such a dislike to Elegiac verses, she has been talking in them? which she has done, from the 15th line to the 30th.]

507 (return)
[ Myself the patroness.—Ver. 44. She certainly does not give herself a very high character in giving herself the title of 'lena.']

508 (return)
[ The fastened door.—Ver. 50. He alludes, probably, to one of the Elegies which he rejected, when he cut down the five books to three.]

509 (return)
[ In a hose tunic.—Ver. 51. He may possibly allude to the Fifth Elegy of the First Book, as the words 'tunicâ velata recinctâ,' as applied to Corinna, are there found. But there he mentions midday as the time when Corinna came to him, whereas he seems here to allude to the middle of the night.]

510 (return)
[ Cut in the wood.—Ver. 53. He alludes to the custom of lovers carving inscriptions on the doors of their obdurate mistresses: this we learn from Plautus to have been done in Elegiac strains, and sometimes with charcoal. 'Implentur meæ fores clegiarum carbonibus.' 'My doors are filled with the coal-black marks of elegies.']

511 (return)
[ On her birthday.—Ver. 57. She is telling Ovid what she has put up with for his sake; and she reminds him how, when he sent to his mistress some complimentary lines on her birthday, she tore them up and threw them in the water. Horace mentions 'the flames, or the Adriatic sea,' as the end of verses that displeased. Athenseus, Book xiii. c. 5, relates a somewhat similai story. Diphilus the poet was in the habit of sending his verses to his mistress Gnathæna. One day she was mixing him a cup of wine and snow-water, on which he observed, how cold her well must be; to which she answered, yes, for it was there that she used to throw his compositions.]

514 (return)
[ From behind.—Ver. 70. It is not known, for certain, to what he refers in this line. Some think that he refers to the succeeding Elegies in this Book, which are, in general, longer than the former ones, while others suppose that he refers to his Metamorphoses, which he then contemplated writing. Burmann, however, is not satisfied with this explanation, and thinks that, in his more mature years, he contemplated the composition of Tragedy, after having devoted his youth to lighter snbjects; and that he did not compose, or even contemplate the composition of his Metamorphoses, until many years afterwards.]

515 (return)
[ I am not sitting here.—Ver. 1. He is here alluding to the Circen-sian games, which were celebrating in the Circus Maximus, or greatest Circus, at Rome, at different times in the year. Some account is given of the Circus Maximus in the Note to 1. 392. of the Second Book of the Fasti. The 'Magni,' or Great Circensian games, took place on the Fourth of the Ides of April. The buildings of the Circus were burnt in the conflagration of Rome, in Nero's reign; and it was not restored till the days of Trajan, who rebuilt it with more than its former magnificence, and made it capable, according to some authors, of accommodating 385,000 persons. The Poet says, that he takes no particular interest himself in the race, but hopes that the horse may win which is her favourite.]

516 (return)
[ The spirited steeds.—Ver. 2. The usual number of chariots in each race was four. The charioteers were divided into four companies, or 'fac-tiones,' each distinguished by a colour, representing the season of the year. These colours were green for the spring, red for the summer, azure for the autumn, and white for the winter. Originally, but two chariots started in each race; but Domitian increased the number to six, appointing two new companies of charioteers, the golden and the purple; however the number was still, more usually, restricted to four. The greatest interest was shewn by all classes, and by both sexes, in the race. Lists of the horses were circulated, with their names and colours; the names also of the charioteers were given, and bets were extensively made, (see the Art of Love, Book i. 1. 167, 168,) and sometimes disputes and violent contests arose.]

517 (return)
[ To be seated by you.—Ver. 3. The men and women sat together when viewing the contests of the Circus, and not in separate parts of the building, as at the theatres.]

518 (return)
[ Happy the driver.—Ver. 7. He addresses the charioteer.]

519 (return)
[ The sacred barrier.—Ver. 9. For an account of the 'career,' or 'starting-place,' see the Notes to the Tristia, Book v. El. ix. 1. 29. It is called 'sacer,' because the whole of the Circus Maximus was sacred to Consus, who is supposed by some to have been the same Deity as Neptune. The games commenced with sacrifices to the Deities.]

520 (return)
[ I would give rein.—Ver. 11. The charioteer was wont to stand within the reins, having them thrown round his back. Leaning backwards, he thereby threw his full weight against the horses, when he wished to check them at full speed. This practice, however, was dangerous, and by it the death of Hippolytus was caused. In the Fifteenth Book of the Metamorphoses,1. 524, he says, 'I struggled, with unavailing hand, to guide the bridle covered with white foam, and throwing myself "backwards, I pulled back the loosened reins.' To avoid the danger of this practice, the charioteer carried a hooked knife at his waist, for the purpose of cutting the reins on an emergency.]

521 (return)
[ The turning-place.—Ver. 12. For an account of the 'meta.'see the Tristia, Book iv. El. viii.l. 35. Of course, thpse who kept as close to the 'meta' as possible, would lose the least distance in turning round it.]

522 (return)
[ How nearly was Pelops.—Ver. 15. In his race with Onomaüs, king of Pisa, in Arcadia, for the hand of his daughter, Hippodamia, when Pelops conquered his adversary by bribing his charioteer, Myrtilus.]

523 (return)
[ Of his mistress.—Ver. 17. He here seems to imply that it was Hippodamia who bribed Myrtilus.]

524 (return)
[ Shrink away in vain.—Ver. 19. She shrinks from him, and seems to think that he is sitting too close, but he tells her that the 'linea' forces them to squeeze. This 'linea' is supposed to have been either cord, or a groove, drawn across the seats at regular intervals, so as to mark out room for a certain number of spectators between each two 'lineæ.']

525 (return)
[ Has this advantage.—Ver. 20. He congratulates himsdf on the construction of the place, so aptly giving him an excuse for sitting close to his mistress.]

526 (return)
[ But do you —Ver. 21. He is pretending to be very anxious for her comfort, and is begging the person on the other side not to squeeze so close against his mistress.]

527 (return)
[ And you as well.—Ver. 23. As in the theatres, the seats, which were called 'gradas,' 'sedilia,' or 'subsellia,' were arranged round the course of the Circus, in ascending tiers; the lowest being, very probably, almost flush with the ground. There were, perhaps, no backs to the seats, or, at the best, only a slight railing of wood. The knees consequently of those in the back row would be level, and in juxta-position with the backs of those in front. He is here telling the person who is sitting behind, to be good enough to keep his knees to himself, and not to hurt the lady's back by pressing against her.]

528 (return)
[ I am taking it up.—Ver. 26. He is here showing off his politeness, and will not give her the trouble of gathering up her dress. Even in those days, the ladies seem to have had no objection to their dresses doing the work of the scavenger's broom.]

529 (return)
[ The fleet Atalanta.—Ver. 29. Some suppose that the Arcadian Atalanta, the daughter of Iasius, was beloved by a youth of the name of Milanion. According to Apollodorus, who evidently confounds the Arcadian with the Boeotian Atalanta, Milanion was another name of Hippo-menes, who conquered the latter in the foot race, as mentioned in the Tenth Book of the Metamorphoses. See the Translation of the Metamorphoses, p. 375. From this and another passage of Ovid, we have reason to suppose that Atalanta was, by tradition, famous for the beauty of her ancles.]

530 (return)
[ The fan may cause.—Ver. 38. Instead of the word 'tabella,' 'flabella' has been suggested here; but as the first syllable is long, such a reading would occasion a violation of the laws of metre, and 'tabella' is probably correct. It has, however, the same meaning here as 'flabella it signifying what we should call 'a fan;' in fact, the 'flabellum' was a 'tabella,' or thin board, edged with peacocks' feathers, or those of other birds, and sometimes with variegated pieces of cloth. These were generally waved by female slaves, who were called 'flabelliferæ'; or else by eunuchs or young boys. They were used to cool the atmosphere, to drive away gnats and flies, and to promote sleep. We here see a gentleman offering to fan a lady, as a compliment; and it must have been especially grateful amid the dust and heat of the Roman Circus. That which was especially intended for the purpose of driving away flies, was called 'muscarium.' The use of fans was not confined to females; as we learn from Suetonius, that the Emperor Augustus had a slave to fan him during his sleep. The fan was also sometimes made of linen, extended upon a light frame, and sometimes of the two wings of a bird, joined back to back, and attached to a handle.]

531 (return)
[ Now the procession.—Ver. 34 All this time they have been waiting for the ceremony to commence. The 'Pompa,' or procession, now opens the performance. In this all those who were about to exhibit in the race took a part. The statues of the Gods were borne on wooden platforms on the shoulders of men, or on wheels, according as they were light or heavy. The procession moved from the Capitol, through the Forum, to the Circus Maximus, and was also attended by the officers of state. Musicians and dancers preceded the statues of the Gods. See the Fasti, Book iv. 1. 391, and the Note to the passage.]

532 (return)
[ Victory borne.—Ver. 45. On the wooden platform, which was called 'ferculum,' or 'thensa,' according as it was small or large.]

533 (return)
[ With expanded wings.—Ver. 45. Victory was always represented with expanded wings, on account of her inconstancy and volatility.]

534 (return)
[ Salute Neptune.—Ver. 47. 'Plaudite Neptuno' is equivalent, in our common parlance, to 'Give a cheer for Neptune.' He is addressing the sailors who may be present: but he declines to have anything to do with the sea himself.]

535 (return)
[ Arms I detest.—Ver. 49. Like his contemporary, Horace, Ovid was no lover of war.]

536 (return)
[ Of the artisan.—Ver. 52. We learn from the Fasti, Book iii. 1.815, that Minerva was especially venerated as the patroness of handicrafts.]

537 (return)
[ Let the boxers.—Ver. 54. Boxing was one of the earliest athletic games practised by the Greeks. Apollo and Hercules, as well as Pollux, are celebrated by the poets for excelling in this exercise. It formed a portion of the Olympic contests; while boys fought in the Nemean and Isthmian games. Concerning the 'cæstus' used by pugilists, see the Fasti, Book ii. 1. 367, and the Note to the passage. The method in fighting most practised was to remain on the defensive, and thus to wear out the opponent by continual efforts. To inflict blows, without receiving any in return on the body, was the great point of merit. The right arm was chiefly used for attack, while the office of the left was to protect the body. Teeth were often knocked out, and the ears were much disfigured. The boxers, by the rules of the game, were not allowed to take hold of each other, nor to trip up their antagonist. In Italy boxing seems to have been practised from early times by the people of Etruria. It continued to be one of the popular games during the period of the Republic as well as of the Empire.]

538 (return)
[ In the lattice work.—Ver. 64. The 'cancelli' were lattice work, which probably fkirted the outer edge of each wide 'præcinctio,' or passage,that ran along in front of the seats, at certain intervals. As the knees would not there be so cramped, these seats would be considered the most desirable. It is clear that Ovid and the lady have had the good fortune to secure front seats, with the feet resting either on the lowest 'præcinctio', or the 'præcinctio' of a set of seats higher up. Stools, of course, could not be used, as they would be in the way of passers-by. He perceives, as the seat is high, that she has some difficulty in touching the ground with her feet, and naturally concludes that her legs must ache; on which he tells her, if it will give her ease, to rest the tips of her feet on the lattice work railing which was opposite, and which, if they were on an upper 'præcinctio,' ran along the edge of it: or if they were on the very lowest tier, skirted the edge of the 'podium' which formed the basis of that tier. This she might do, if the 'præcinctio' was not more than a yard wide, and if the 'cancelli' were as much as a foot in height.]

539 (return)
[ Now the Prcetor.—Ver. 65. The course is now clear of the procession, and the Prætor gives the signal for the start, the 'carceres' being first opened. This was sometimes given by sound of trumpet, or more frequently by letting fall a napkin; at least, after the time of Nero, who is said, on one occasion, while taking a meal, to have heard the shouts of the people who were impatient for the race to begin, on which he threw down his napkin as the signal.]

540 (return)
[ The even harriers.—Ver. 66. From this description we should be apt to think that the start was effected at the instant when the 'carceres' were opened. This was not the case: for after coming out of the-carceres,' the chariots were ranged abreast before a white line, which was held by men whose office it was to do, and who were called 'moratores.' When all were ready, and the signal had been given, the white line was thrown down, and the race commenced, which was seven times round the course. The 'career' is called 'æquum,' because they were in a straight line, and each chariot was ranged in front of the door of its 'career.']

541 (return)
[ Circuit far too wide.—Ver. 69. The charioteer, whom the lady favours, is going too wide of the 'meta,' or turning-place, and so loses ground, while the next overtakes him.]

542 (return)
[ To the left.—Ver. 72. He tells him to guide the horses to the left, so as to keep closer to the 'meta,' and not to lose so much ground by going wide of it.]

543 (return)
[ Call him back again.—Ver. 73. He, by accident, lets drop the observation, that they have been interesting themselves for a blockhead. But he immediately checks himself, and, anxious that the favourite may yet distinguish himself, trusts that the spectators will call him back. Crispinus, the Delphin Editor, thinks, that by the calling back, it is meant that it was a false start, and that the race was to be run over again. Bur-mann, however, is not of that opinion; but supposes, that if any chariot did not go well, or the horses seemed jaded, it was the custom to call the driver back from the present race, that with new horses he might join in the next race. This, from the sequel, seems the most rational mode of explanation here.]

544 (return)
[ Waving the garments.—Ver. 74. The signal for stopping was given by the men rising and shaking and waving their outer garments, or 'togae,' and probably calling the charioteer by name.]

545 (return)
[ Disarrange your hair.—Ver. 75. He is afraid lest her neighbours, in their vehemence should discommode her hair, and tells her, in joke, that she may creep into the bosom of his own 'toga.']

546 (return)
[ And now the barrier.—Ver. 77. The first race we are to suppose finished, and the second begins similarly to the first. There were generally twenty-five of these 'missus,' or races in a day.]

547 (return)
[ The variegated throng.—Ver. 78. See the Note to the second line.]

548 (return)
[ At all events.—Ver. 79. He addresses the favourite, who has again started in this race.]

549 (return)
[ Bears away the palm.—Ver. 82. The favourite charioteer is now victorious, and the Poet hopes that he himself may gain the palm in like manner. The victor descended from his car at the end of the race, and ascended the 'spina,' where he received his reward, which was generally a considerable sum of money. For an account of the 'spina,' see the Metamorphoses, Book x. l. 106, and the Note to the passage.]

550 (return)
[ Her beauty remains.—Ver. 2. She has not been punished with ugliness, as a judgment for her treachery.]

551 (return)
[ Proved false to me.—Ver. 10. Tibullus has a similar passage, 'Et si perque suos fallax juravit ocellos 'and if with her eyes the deceitful damsel is forsworn.']

552 (return)
[ Its divine sway.—Ver. 12. 'Numen' here means a power equal to that of the Divinities, and which puts it on a level with them.]

553 (return)
[ Mine felt pain.—Ver. 14. When the damsel swore by them, his eyes smarted, as though conscious of her perjury.]

554 (return)
[ Forsooth to you.—Ver. 17. He says that surely it was enough for the Gods to punish Andromeda, the daughter of Cepheus, for the sins of her mother, without making him to suffer misery for the perjury of his mistress. Cassiope, the mother of Andromeda, having dared to compare her own beauty with that of the Nereids, her daughter was, by the command of Jupiter, exposed to a sea-monster, which was afterwards slain by Perseus. See the Metamorphoses, Book iv. 1. 670.]

555 (return)
[ Hurls at the groves.—Ver. 35. A place which had been struck by lightning was called 'bidental,' and was held sacred ever afterwards. The same veneration was also paid to a place where any person who had been killed by lightning was buried. Priests collected the earth that had been torn up by lightning, and everything that had been scorched, and buried it in the ground with lamentations. The spot was then consecrated by sacrificing a two-year-old sheep, which being called 'bidens,' gave its name to the place. An altar was also erected there, and it was not allowable thenceforth to tread on the spot, or to touch it, or even look at it. When the altar had fallen to decay, it might be renovated, but to remove its boundaries was deemed sacrilege. Madness was supposed to ensue on committing such an offence; and Seneca mentions a belief, that wine which had been struck by lightning, would produce death or madness in those who drank it.]

556 (return)
[ Unfortunate Semele.—Ver. 37. See the fate of Semele, related in the Third Book of the Metamorphoses.]

557 (return)
[ Have some regard.—Ver. 49. Or, in other words. 'Don't sweat any more by my eyes.']

558 (return)
[ Because she cannot, stilt sews.—Ver. 4. It is not a little singular that a heathen poet should enunciate the moral doctrine of the New Testament, that it is the thought, and not the action, that of necessity constitutes the sin.]

559 (return)
[ A hundred in his neck.—Ver. 18. In the First Book of the Metamorphoses, he assigns to Argus only one hundred eyes; here, however, he uses a poet's license, prohably for the sake of filling up the line.]

560 (return)
[ Its stone and its iron.—Ver. 21. From Pausanias and Lucian we learn that the chamber of Danaë was under ground, and was lined with copper and iron.]

561 (return)
[ Nor yet is it legal.—Ver. 33. He tells him that he ought not to inflict loss of liberty on a free-born woman, a punishment that was only suited to a slave.]

562 (return)
[ Those two qualities.—Ver. 42. He says, the wish being probably the father to the thought, that beauty and chastity cannot possibly exist together.]

563 (return)
[ Many a thing at home.—Ver. 48. He tells him that he will grow quite rich with the presents which his wife will then receive from her admirers.]

564 (return)
[ Its bubbling foam..—Ver. 13. He alludes to the noise which the milk makes at the moment when it touches that in the pail.]

565 (return)
[ Ewe when milked.—Ver. 14. Probably the milk of ewes was used for making cheese, as is sometimes the case in this country.]

566 (return)
[ Hag of a procuress.—Ver. 40. We have been already introduced to one amiable specimen of this class in the Eighth Elegy of the First Book.]

567 (return)
[ River that hast.—Ver. 1. Ciofanus has this interesting Note:—'This river is that which flows near the walls of Sulmo, and, which, at the present day we call 'Vella.' In the early spring, when the snows melt, and sometimes, at the beginning of autumn, it swells to a wonderful degree with the rains, so that it becomes quite impassable. Ovid lived not far from the Fountain of Love, at the foot of the Moronian hill, and had a house there, of which considerable vestiges still remain, and are called 'la botteghe d'Ovidio.' Wishing to go thence to the town of Sulmo, where his mistress was living, this river was an obstruction to his passage.']

568 (return)
[ A hollow boat.—Ver. 4. 'Cymba' was a name given to small boats used on rivers or lakes. He here alludes to a ferry-boat, which was not rowed over; but a chain or rope extending from one side of the stream to the other, the boatman passed across by running his hands along the rope.]

569 (return)
[ The opposite mountain.—Ver. 7. The mountain of Soracte was near the Flaminian way, in the territory of the Falisci, and may possibly be the one here alluded to. Ciofanus says that its name is now 'Majella,-and that it is equal in height to the loftiest mountains of Italy, and capped with eternal snow. *All one with the day.—Ver. 10. He means to say that he has risen early in the morning for the purpose of proceeding on his journey.]

570 (return)
[ The son of Danaë.—Ver. 13. Mercury was said to have lent to Perseus his winged shoes, 'talaria,' when he slew Medusa with her viperous locks.]

571 (return)
[ Wish for the chariot.—Ver. 15. Ceres was said to have sent Trip-tolemus in her chariot, drawn by winged dragons, to introduce agriculture among mankind. See the Fourth Book of the Fasti, 1. 558.]

572 (return)
[ Inachus.—Ver. 25. Inachus was a river of Argolis, in Peloponnesus.]

573 (return)
[ Love for Melie.—Ver. 25. Melie was a Nymph beloved by Neptune, to whom she bore Amycus, king of Bebrycia, or Bithynia, in Asia Minor, whence her present appellation.]

574 (return)
[ Alpheus.—Ver 29. See the story of Alpheus and Arethusa, in the Fifth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 576.]

575 (return)
[ Creüsa.—Ver. 31. Creüsa was a Naïad, the mother of Hypseas, king of the Lapithae, by Peneus, a river of Thessaly. Xanthus was a rivulet near Troy. Of Creüsa being promised to Xanthus nothing whatever is known.]

576 (return)
[ The be beloved by Mars.—Ver. 33. Pindar, in his Sixth Olympic Ode, says that Metope, the daughter of Ladon, was the mother of live daughters, by Asopus, a river of Boeotia. Their names were Corcyra, Ægina, Salamis, Thebe, and Harpinna. Ovid, in calling her Thebe, probably follows some other writer. She is called 'Martia,' because she was beloved by Mars, to whom she bore Evadne.]

577 (return)
[ Hand of Hercules.—Ver. 36. For the contest of Hercules and Achelous for the hand of Deianira, see the beginning of the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses.]

578 (return)
[ Calydon.—Ver. 37. Aeneus, the father of Meleager and Dei'anira, reigned over Ætolia, of which Calydon was the chief city.]

579 (return)
[ The native spot.—Ver. 40; He alludes to the fact of the source or native country of the Nile being then, as it probably still is, quite unknown.]

580 (return)
[ Daughter of Asopus.—Ver. 41. Evadne is called 'Asopide,' from her mother being the wife of Asopus. See the Note on line 33 above.]

581 (return)
[ Enipeus dried up.—Ver. 43. Probably the true reading here is 'fictus,' 'the false Enipeus.' Tyro was the daughter of Salmoneus, king of Pisa, in Elis. She being much enamoured of the river Enipeus, Neptune is said to have assumed his form, and to have been, by her, the father of Pelias and Neleus.']

582 (return)
[ Argive Tibur,—Ver. 46. Tibur was a town beautifully situate in the neighbourhood of Home; it was said to have been founded by three Argive brothers, Tyburtus, Catillus, and Coras.]

583 (return)
[ Whom Ilia.—Ver. 47. Ilia was said to have been buried alive, by the orders of Amulius, on the banks of the river Tiber; or, according to some, to have been thrown into that river, on which she is said to have become the wife of the river, and was deified. Acron, an ancient historian, wrote to the effect that her ashes were interred on the banks of the Anio; and that river overflowing, carried them to the bed of the Tiber, whence arose the story of her nuptials with the latter. According to one account, she was not put to death, but was imprisoned, having been spared by Amulius at the entreaty of his daughter, who was of the same age as herself, and at length regained her liberty.]

584 (return)
[ Descendant of Laomedon.—Ver. 54. She was supposed to be descended from Laomedon, through Ascanius, the son of Creüsa, the granddaughter of Laomedon.]

585 (return)
[ No white fillet.—Ver. 56. The fillet with which the Vestals bound their hair.]

586 (return)
[ Am I courted.—Ver. 75. The Vestais were released from their duties, and were allowed to marry if they chose, after they had served for thirty years. The first ten years were passed in learning their duties, the next ten in performing them, and the last ten in instructing the novices.]

587 (return)
[ Did she throw herself.—Ver. 80. The Poet follows the account which represented her as drowning herself.]

588 (return)
[ To some fixed rule.—Ver. 89. 'Legitimum' means 'according to fixed laws so that it might be depended upon, 'in a steady manner.']

589 (return)
[ Injurious to the flocks.—Ver. 99. It would be 'damnosus' in many ways, especially from its sweeping away the cattle and the produce of the land. Its waters, too, being turbid, would be unpalatable to the thirsty traveller, and unwholesome from the melted snow, which would be likely to produce goitre, or swellings in the throat.]

590 (return)
[ Could I speak of the rivers.—Ver. 103. He apologizes to the Acheloüs, Inachus, and Nile, for presuming to mention their names, in addressing such a turbid, contemptible stream.]

591 (return)
[ After my poems.—Ver. 5. He refers to his lighter works; such, perhaps, as the previous books of his Amores. This explains the nature of the 'libelli,' which he refers to in his address to his mistress, in the Second Book of the Amores, El. xi. 1. 31.]

592 (return)
[ His wealth acquired.—Ver. 9. 'Censu.' For the explanation of this word, see the Fasti, B. i. 1. 217, and the Note to the passage.]

593 (return)
[ Through his wounds.—Ver. 9. In battle, either by giving wounds, or receiving them.]

594 (return)
[ Which thus late.—Ver. 15. By 4 serum,'he means that his position, as a man of respectable station, has only been recently acquired, and has not descended to him through a long line of ancestors.]

595 (return)
[ Was it acquired.—Ver. 20. This was really much to the merit of his rival; but most of the higher classes of the Romans affected to despise anything like gain by means of bodily exertion; and the Poet has extended this feeling even to the rewards of merit as a soldier.]

596 (return)
[ Hold sway over.—Ver. 27. He here plays upon the two meanings of the word 'deducere.' 'Deducere carmen' is 'to compose poetry'; 'deducere primum pilum' means 'to form' or 'command the first troop of the Triarii.' These were the veteran soldiers of the Roman army, and the 'Primipilus' (which office is here alluded to) being the first Centurion of the first maniple of them, was the chief Centurion of the legion, holding an office somewhat similar to our senior captains. Under the Empire this office was very lucrative. See the Note to the 49th line of the Seventh Epistle, in the-Fourth Book of the Pontic Epistles.]

597 (return)
[ The ravished damsel.—Ver. 30. He alludes to Danaë.]

598 (return)
[ Resorted to presents.—Ver. 33. He seems to allude to the real meaning of the story of Danaë, which, no doubt, had reference to the corrupting influence of money.]

599 (return)
[ With no boundaries.—Ver. 42. The 'limes' was a line or boundary, between pieces of land belonging to different persons, and consisted of a path, or ditch, or a row of stones. The 'ager limitatus' was the public land marked out by 'limites,' for the purposes of allotment to the citizens. On apportioning the land, a line, which was called 'limes,' was drawn through a given point from East to West, which was called 'decumanus,' and another line was drawn from North to South. The distance at which the 'limites' were to be drawn depended on the magnitude of the squares or 'centuriæ,' as they were called, into which it was purposed to divide the tract.]

601 (return)
[ Then was the shore.—Ver. 44. Because they had not as yet learnt the art of navigation.]

602 (return)
[ Turreted fortifications.—Ver. 47. Among the ancients the fortifications of cities were strengthened by towers, which were placed at intervals on the walls; they were also generally used at the gates of towns.]

603 (return)
[ Why not seek the heavens.—Ver. 50. With what indignation would he not have spoken of a balloon, as being nothing less than a downright attempt to scale the 'tertia régna!']

604 (return)
[ Ciesar but recently.—Ver. 52. See the end of the Fifteenth Book of the Metamorphoses, and the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 704.]

605 (return)
[ The Senate-house.—Ver. 55. 'Curia'was the name of the place where the Senate held its meetings, such as the 'curia Hostilia,' * Julia,' Marcelli,' and others. Hence arose the custom of calling the Senate itself, in the various Roman towns, by the name of 'curia,' but not the Senate of Rome. He here means to say, that poverty excluded a man from the Senate-house, and that wealth alone was the qualification for the honours of the state.]

606 (return)
[ Wealth alone confers honours —Ver. 55. The same expression occurs in the Fasti, Book i. 1. '217, where a similar complaint is made on the worldly-mindedness of the age.]

607 (return)
[ The Field of Mars.—Ver. 57. The 'comitia,' or meetings for the elections of the magistrates, were held on the 'Campus Martius' or field of Mars. See the Notes to the Fasti, Book i. 1. 53.]

608 (return)
[ And the Forum. —Ver. 57. The 'Fora' were of two kinds at Rome; some being market-places, where all kinds of goods were exposed for sale, while others were solely courts of justice. Among the latter is the one here mentioned, which was simply called 'Forum,' so long as it was the only one of its kind existing at Rome, and, indeed, after that period, as in the present instance. At a later period of the Republic, and under the Empire, when other 'fora,' for judicial purposes, were erected, this Forum' was distinguished by the epithets 'vetus,' 'old,' or 'magnum, 'great.' It was situate between the Capitoline and Palatine hills, and was originally a swamp or marsh, which was filled up hy Romulus or Tatius. It was chiefly used for judicial proceedings, and is supposed to have been surrounded with the hankers' shops or offices, 'argentaria.' Gladiatorial games were occasionally held there, and sometimes prisoners of war, and faithless legionary soldiers, were there put to death. A second 'Forum,' for judicial purposes, was erected hy Julius Caesar, and was called hy his name. It was adorned with a splendid temple of Venus Genitrix. A third was built hy Augustus, and was called 'Forum Augusts' It was adorned with a temple of Mars, and the statues of the most distinguished men of the republic. Having suffered severely from fire, this Forum was restored by the Emperor Hadrian. It is mentioned in the Fourth Book of the Pontic Epistles, Ep. xv. 1. 16. See the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 704.]

609 (return)
[ With regard to me.—Ver. 63. He says that because he is poor she makes excuses, and pretends that she is afraid of her husband and those whom he has set to watch her.]

610 (return)
[ Of thy own inspiration.—Ver. 5. Burmann remarks, that the word 'opus' is especially applied to the sacred rites of the Gods; literally 'the priest of thy rites.']

611 (return)
[ The erected pile—Ver. 6. Among the Romans the corpse was burnt on a pile of wood, which was called 'pyra,' or 'rogus.' According to Servius, it was called by the former name before, and hy the latter after, it was lighted, but this distinction is not observed by the Latin writers.]

612 (return)
[ The cruel boar.—Ver. 16. He alludes to the death of Adonis, by the tusk of a boar, which pierced his thigh. See the Tenth Book of the Metamorphoses, l. 716.]

613 (return)
[ We possess inspiration.—Ver. 17. In the Sixth Book of the Fasti, 1. 6, he says. 'There is a Deity within us (Poets): under his guidance we glow with inspiration; this poetic fervour contains the impregnating. particles of the mind of the Divinity.']

614 (return)
[ She lays her.—Ver. 20. It must be remembered that, whereas we personify Death as of the masculine gender; the Romans represented the grim tyrant as being a female. It is a curious fact that we find Death very rarely represented as a skeleton on the Roman monuments. The skeleton of a child has, in one instance, been found represented on one of the tombs of Pompeii. The head of a horse was one of the most common modes of representing death, as it signified departure.]

615 (return)
[ Ismarian Orpheus.—Ver. 21. Apollo and the Muse Calliope were the parents of Orpheus, who met with a cruel death. See the beginning of the Eleventh Book of the Metamorphoses.]

616 (return)
[ Linus! Alas!—Ver. 23. 'Ælinon' was said to have been the exclamation of Apollo, on the death of his son, the poet Linus. The word is derived from the Greek, 'di Aivôç,' 'Alas! Linus.' A certain poetic measure was called by this name; but we learn from Athenaeus, that it was not always confined to pathetic subjects. There appear to have been two persons of the name of Linus. One was a Theban, the son of Apollo, and the instructor of Orpheus and Hercules, while the other was the son of an Argive princess, by Apollo, who, according to Statius, was torn to pieces in his infancy by dogs.]

617 (return)
[ The son of Mæon. —Ver. 25. See the Note to the ninth line of the Fifteenth Elegy of the First Book of the Amores.]

618 (return)
[ Slow web woven.—Ver. 30. The web of Penelope.]

619 (return)
[ Nemesis, so Delia.—Ver. 31. Nemesis and Delia were the names of damsels whose charms were celebrated by Tibullus.]

620 (return)
[ Sacrifice avail thee.—Ver. 33. He alludes to two lines in the First Elegy of Tibullus.]

621 (return)
[ What lying apart.—Ver. 34. During the festival of Isis, all intercourse with men was forbidden to the female devotees.]

622 (return)
[ The yawning tomb.—Ver. 38. The place where a person was burnt was called 'bustum,' if he was afterwards buried on the same spot, and 'ustrina,' or 'ustrinum,' if he was buried at a different place. See the Notes to the Fasti, B. ii. 1. 531.]

623 (return)
[ The towers of Eryx—Ver. 45. He alludes to Venus, who had a splendid temple on Mount Eryx, in Sicily.]

624 (return)
[ The Phæacian land.—Ver. 47. The Phæacians were the ancient people of Corcyra, now the isle of Corfu. Tibullus had attended Messala thither, and falling ill, was unable to accompany his patron on his return to Rome, on which he addressed to him the First Elegy of his Third Book, in which he expressed a hope that he might not die among the Phæacians. To this Elegy Ovid here refers. Tibullus afterwards recovered, and died at Rome. When he penned this line, Ovid little thought that his own bones would one day rest in a much more ignoble spot than Corcyra, and one much more repulsive to the habits of civilization.]

625 (return)
[ Here.—Ver. 49. 1 Hie'here seems to be the preferable reading; alluding to Rome, in contradistinction to Corcyra.]

626 (return)
[ His tearful eyes.—Ver. 49. He alludes to the custom of the nearest relative closing the eyes of the dying person.]

627 (return)
[ The last gifts.—Ver. 50. The perfumes and other offerings which were thrown on the burning pile, are here alluded to. Tibullus says, in the same Elegy—]

'Non soror Assyrios cineri quæ dedat odores,]

Et Heat effusis ante sepulchra comis']

'No sister have I here to present to my ashes the Assyrian perfumes, and to weep before my tomb with dishevelled locks.' To this passage Ovid makes reference in the next two lines.]

628 (return)
[ Thy first love.—Ver. 53. 'Prior;' his former love was Delia, who was forsaken by him for Nemesis. They are both represented here as attending his obsequies. Tibullus says, in the First Elegy of the First Book, addressing Delia:—]

Te spectem, suprema mihi cum venerit hora,]

Te teneam moriens, déficiente manu.]

Flebis et arsuro positum me, Delia, lecto,]

Tristibus et lacrymis oscula mista dabis.']

May I look upon you when my last hour comes, when dying, may I hold you with my failing hand. Delia, you will lament me, too, when placed on my bier, doomed to the pile, and will give me kisses mingled with the tears of grief.' To these lines Ovid evidently here refers. It would appear from the present passage, that it was the custom to give the last kiss when the body was laid on the funeral pile.]

629 (return)
[ With his failing hand.—Ver. 58. Nemesis here alludes to the above line, and tells Delia, that she, herself, alone engaged his affection, as it was she alone who held his hand when he died.]

630 (return)
[ Learned Catullus.—Ver. 62. Catullus was a Roman poet, a native of Verona. Calvus was also a Roman poet of great merit. The poems of Catullus and Calvus were set to music by Hermogenes, Tigellius, and Demetrius, who were famous composers. See the Tristia, Book ii. lines 427 and 431, and the Notes to the passages.]

631 (return)
[ Prodigal of thy blood.—Ver. 64. He alludes to the fact of Gallus having killed himself, and to his having been suspected of treason against Augustus, from whom he had received many marks of kindness Ovid seems to hint, in the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 446, that the fault of Gallus was his having divulged the secrets of Augustus, when he was in a state o* inebriety. Some writers say, that when Governor of Egypt, he caused his name and exploits to be inscribed on the Pyramids, and that this constituted his crime. Others again, suppose that he was guilty of extortion in Egypt, and that he especially harassed the people of Thebea with his exactions. Some of the Commentators think that under the name 'amicus,' Augustus is not here referred to, inasmuch as it woulc seem to bespeak a familiar acquaintanceship, which is not known to have existed. Scaliger thinks that it must refer to some misunderstanding which had taken place between Gallus and Tibullus, in which the former was accused of having deceived his friend.]

632 (return)
[ The rites of Ceres—Ver. 1. This festival of Ceres occurred on the Fifth of the Ides of April, being the 12th day of that month. See the Fasti, Book iv. 1. 393. White garments, were worn at this festival, and woollen robes of dark colour were prohibited. The worship was conducted solely by females, and all intercourse with men was forbidden, who were not allowed to approach the altars of the Goddess.]

633 (return)
[ The oaks, the early oracles.—Ver. 9. On the oaks, the oracles of Dodona, see the Translation of the Metamorphoses, pages 253 and 467.]

634 (return)
[ Having nurtured Jove.—Ver. 20. See an account of the education of Jupiter, by the Curetes, in Crete, in the Fourth Book of the Fasti, L 499, et seq.]

635 (return)
[ Beheld Jasius.—Ver. 25. Iasius, or Iasion, was, according to most accounts, the son of Jupiter and Electra, and enjoyed the favour of Ceres, by whom he was the father of Plutus. According to the Scholiast on Theocritus, he was the son of Minos, and the Nymph Phronia. According to Apollodorus, he was struck dead by the bolts of Jupiter, for offering violence to Ceres. He was also said by some to be the husband of Cybele. He is supposed to have been a successful husbandman when agriculture was but little known; which circumstance is thought to have given rise to the story of his familiarity with Ceres. Ovid repeats this charge against the chastity of Ceres, in the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 300. See the Note to the passage.]

636 (return)
[ Proportion of their wheat.—Ver. 30. With less corn than had been originally sown.]

637 (return)
[ The law-giving Mims.—Ver. 41. Minos is said to have been the first who gave laws to the Cretans.]

638 (return)
[ Late have the horns.—Ver. 6. This figure is derived from the horns, the weapons of the bull. 'At length I have assumed the weapons of defence.' It is rendered in a singular manner in Nisard's Translation, 'Trop tard, helas 1 J'ai connu l'outrage fait a mon front.' 'Too late, alas! I have known the outrage done to my forehead.'!!!]

639 (return)
[ Have patience and endure.—Ver. 7. He addresses himself, recommending fortitude as his only cure.]

640 (return)
[ The hard ground.—Ver. 10. At the door of his mistress; a practice which seems to have been very prevalent with the Roman lovers.]

641 (return)
[ I was beheld by him.—Ver. 15. As, of courser, his rival would only laugh at him for his folly, and very deservedly.]

642 (return)
[ As you walked.—Ver. 17. By the use of the word 'spatiantis,' he alludes to her walks under the Porticos of Rome, which were much frequented as places for exercise, sheltered from the heat.]

643 (return)
[ The Gods forsworn.—Ver. 22. This forms the subject of the Third Elegy of the present Book.]

644 (return)
[ Young mem at banquets.—Ver. 23. See the Fifth Elegy of the Second Book of the Amores.]

645 (return)
[ She was not ill.—Ver. 26. When he arrived, he found his rival in her company.]

646 (return)
[ I will hate.—Ver. 35. This and the next line are considered by Heinsius and other Commentators to be spurious.]

647 (return)
[ She who but lately.—Ver. 5. Commentators are at a loss to know whether he is here referring to Corinna, or to his other mistress, to whom he alludes in the Tenth Elegy of the Second Book, when he confesses that he is in love with two mistresses. If Corinna was anything more than an ideal personage, it is probable that she is not meant here, as he made it a point not to discover to the world who was meant under that name; whereas, the mistress here mentioned has been recommended to the notice of the Roman youths by his poems.]

648 (return)
[ Made proclamation.—Ver. 9. He says that, unconsciously, he has been doing the duties of the 'præco' or 'crier,' in recommending his mistress to the public. The 'præco,' among the Romans, was employed in sales by auction, to advertise the time, place, and conditions of sale, and very probably to recommend and praise the property offered for sale. These officers also did the duty of the auctioneer, so far as calling out the biddings, but the property was knocked down by the 'magister auctionum.' The 'præcones' were also employed to keep silence in the public assemblies, to pronounce the votes of the centuries, to summon the plaintiff and defendant upon trials, to proclaim the victors in the public games, to invite the people to attend public funerals, to recite the laws that were enacted, and, when goods were lost, to cry them and search for them. The office of a 'præco' was, in the time of Cicero, looked upon as rather disreputable.]

649 (return)
[ Thebes.—Ver. 15. He speaks of the Theban war, the Trojan war, and the exploits of Caesar, as being good subjects for Epic poetry; but he says that he had neglected them, and had wasted his time in singing in praise of Corinna. This, however, may be said in reproof of his general habits of indolence, and not as necessarily implying that Corinna is the cause of his present complaint. The Roman poet Statius afterwards chose the Theban war as his subject.]

650 (return)
[ Poets as witnesses.—Ver. 19. That is, 'to rely implicitly on the testimony of poets.' The word 'poetas' requires a semicolon after it, and not a comma.]

651 (return)
[ The raging dogs.—Ver. 21. He here falls into his usual mistake of confounding Scylla, the daughter of Nisus, with Scylla, the Nymph, the rival of Circe, in the affections of Glaucus. See the Note to 1. 33 of the First Epistle of Sabinus, and the Eighth and Fourteenth Books of the Metamorphoses.]

652 (return)
[ Descendant of Abas.—Ver. 24. In the Fourth Book of the Metamorphoses he relates the rescue of Andromeda from the sea monster, by Perseus, the descendant of Abas, and clearly implies that he used the services of the winged horse Pegasus on that occasion. It has been suggested by some Commentators, that he here refers to Bellerophon; but that hero was not a descendant of Abas, and, singularly enough, he is not on any occasion mentioned or referred to by Ovid.]

653 (return)
[ Extended Tityus.—Ver. 25. Tityus was a giant, the son of Jupiter and Elara. Offering violence to Latona, he was pierced by the darts of Apollo and hurled to the Infernal Regions, where his liver was doomed to feed a vulture, without being consumed.]

654 (return)
[ Enceladus.—Ver. 27. He was the son of Titan and Terra, and joining in the war against the Gods, he was struck by lightning, and thrown beneath Mount Ætna. See the Pontic Epistles, Book ii. Ep.ii. 1.11.]

655 (return)
[ The-two-shaped damsels.—Ver. 28. He evidently alludes to the Sirens, with their two shapes, and not to Circe, as some have imagined.]

656 (return)
[ The Ithacan bags.—Ver. 29. Æolus gave Ulysses favourable wind* sewn up in a leather bag, to aid him in his return to Ithaca. See tha Metamorphoses, Book xiv. 1. 223]

657 (return)
[ The Cecropian bird.—Ver. 32. He calls Philomela the daughter of Pandion, king of Athens, 'Cecropis ales Cc crops having been the first king of Athens. Her story is told in the Sixth Book of the Metamorphoses.]

658 (return)
[ A bird, or into gold.—Ver. 33. He alludes to the transformation of Jupiter into a swan, a shower of gold, and a bull; in the cases of Leda, Danaë, and Europa.]

659 (return)
[ The Theban seed.—Ver. 35. He alludes to the dragon's teeth sown by Cadmus. See the Third Book of the Metamorphoses.]

660 (return)
[ Distil amber tears.—Ver. 37. Reference is made to the transformation of the sisters of Phaeton into poplars that distilled amber. See the Second Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 364.]

661 (return)
[ Who once were ships.—Ver. 38. He alludes to the ships of Æneas, which, when set on fire by Turnus, were changed into sea Nymphs.]

662 (return)
[ The hellish banquet.—Ver. 39. Reference is made to the revenge of Atreus, who killed the children of Thyestes, and set them on table before their father, on which occasion the Sun is said to have hidden his face.]

663 (return)
[ Stonesfollowed the lyre.—Ver. 40. Amphion is said to have raised the walls of Thebes by the sound of his lyre.]

664 (return)
[ Camillus, by thee.—Ver. 2. Marcus Furius Camillus, the Roman general, took the city of Falisci.]

665 (return)
[ The covered paths.—Ver. 12. The pipers, or flute players, led the procession, while the ground was covered with carpets or tapestry.]

666 (return)
[ Snow-white heifers.—Ver. 14. Pliny the Elder, in his Second Book, says, 'The river Clitumnus, in the state of Falisci, makes those cattle white that drink of its waters.']

667 (return)
[ In the lofty woods.—Ver. 20. It is not known to what occasion this refers. Juno is stated to have concealed herself on two occasions; once before her marriage, when she fled from the pursuit of Jupiter, who assumed the form of a cuckoo, that he might deceive her; and again, when, through fear of the giants, the Gods took refuge in Egypt and Libya. Perhaps the former occasion is here referred to.]

668 (return)
[ As a mark.—Ver. 21. This is similar to the alleged origin of the custom of throwing sticks at cocks on Shrove Tuesday. The Saxons being about to rise in rebellion against their Norman oppressors, the conspiracy is said to have been discovered through the inopportune crowing of a cock, in revenge for which the whole race of chanticleers were for centuries submitted to this cruel punishment.]

669 (return)
[ With garments.—Ver. 24. As 'vestis' was a general name for a covering of any kind, it may refer to the carpets which appear to be mentioned in the twelfth line, or it may mean, that the youths and damsels threw their own garments in the path of the procession.]

670 (return)
[ After the Grecian manner.—Ver. 27. Falisci was said to have been a Grecian colony.]

671 (return)
[ Hold religious silence.—Ver. 29. 'Favere linguis' seems here to mean, 'to keep religious silence as to the general meaning of the term, see the Fasti, Book i. 1. 71.]

672 (return)
[ Halesus.—Ver. 33. Halesus is said to have been the son of Agamemnon, by a concubine. Alarmed at the tragic death of his father, and of the murderers, Ægisthus and Clytemnestra, he fled to Italy, where he founded the city of Phalesus, which title, with the addition of one letter, was given to it after his name. Phalesus afterwards became corrupted, to 'Faliscus,' or 'Falisci.']

673 (return)
[ One side and the other.—Ver. 32. For the 'torus exterior' and 'interior,' and the construction of the beds of the ancients, see the Note to the Eighth Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 659. * Forced to love.—Ver. 39. This passage seems to be hopelessly corrupt.]

674 (return)
[ Turning-place is grazed.—Ver. 2. On rounding the 'meta' in the chariot race, from which the present figure is derived, see the Note to the 69th line of the Second Elegy of this Book.]

675 (return)
[ Heir to my rank.—Ver. 5. See the Tristia, Book ii. 1. 112, where he enlarges upon the rank and circumstances of his family.]

676 (return)
[ To glorious arms.—Ver. 9. He alludes to the Social war which was commenced in the year of the City 659, by the Marsi, the Peligni, and the Picentes, for the purpose of obtaining equal rights and privileges with the Roman citizens. He calls them 'arma honesta,' because wielded in defence of their liberties.]

677 (return)
[ Rome dreaded.—Ver. 10. The Romans were so alarmed, that they vowed to celebrate games in honour of Jupiter, if their arms should prove successful.]

678 (return)
[ Amathusian parent.—Ver. 15. Venus was worshipped especially at Amathus, a city of Cyprus; it is mentioned by Ovid as abounding in metals. See the Metamorphoses, Book x. 1. 220 and 531, B. III.]

679 (return)
[ The homed.—Ver. 17. In addition to the reasons already mentioned for Bacchus being represented as horned, it is said, by some, that it arose from the fact, of wine being drunk from horns in the early ages. It has been suggested, that it had a figurative meaning, and implied the violence of those who are overtaken with wine.]

680 (return)
[ Lyæus.—Ver. 17. For the meaning of the word Lyæus, see the Metamorphoses, Book iv. 1. 11, and the Note to the passage.]

681 (return)
[ My sportive.—Ver. 19. Genialis; the Genii were the Deities of pure, unadorned nature. See the Fasti, Book iii. 1. 58, and the Note to the passage. 'Genialis,' consequently, 'voluptuous,' or 'pleasing to the impulses of nature.']

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