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Convolsum remis rostrisque tridentibus aequor.
Effugit ante alios primisque elabitur undis
Turbam inter fremitumque Gyas; quem deinde Cloanthus
Consequitur, melior remis, sed pondere pinus
4. 33. Pariter' expresses the regular movement of the oars of each vessel; or it may refer to the ships as abreast of each other at starting. 'Dehiscit' as in a storm 1. 106.
143.] Tridentibus' expresses accurately the shape of the ship's beak (Dict. A. Ships').
144.] Biiugo certamine' is the poetical equivalent of 'biiugorum' or bigarum certamine.'
146.] Inmissis' expresses the darting forward of the horses. So G. 2. 364, "laxis per purum inmissus habenis."
147.] Pronique in verbera pendent' 10. 586. 'In verbera' may mean either "ut verbera dent," or literally and physically, over the blows they give, which is the same thing as saying, over the horses. "Illi instant verbere torto Et proni dant lora " G. 3. 106.
148.] Faventum' may be taken either with 'virum' or separately.
149.] "Consonat omne nemus strepitu, collesque resultant" 8. 305. Here we must suppose wooded hills near the coast. Consonat' is explained by Wagn. from 'omne.' Perhaps it is rather to be explained by the echo, fremitu,' &c., however not being taken as datives but as instrumental ablatives expressing the cause
of the echo. Inclusa,' confined by the hills. "Vocemque per ampla volutant Atria" 1. 725.
150.] Clamore' with pulsati.' The hills are said to rebound because the noise rebounds from them (G. 4. 50), a variety which has found its way into English poetry, being common in Pope's Homer.
151.] Effugit' and 'elabitur both give the notion of escape from the mêlée of competitors. So II. 23. 376, ἔκφερον ἵπποι. Turbam inter fremitumque,' of the hurry and noise of those whom Gyas is leaving behind.
154.] Aequo discrimine,' an equal distance behind the two first. "Bene variat, nunc navis, nunc ductores commemorans," Serv.
155.] Locum superare priorem seems to be a mixture of two notions, overcoming each other, and overcoming the difficulty of gaining the better place.
156.] Habet,' 'locum priorem.'
158.] "Et longa sulcat maria alta carina 10.197. "The simple idea, stripped of its ornament, is that of the two vessels moving on, abreast in front, and side by side in their length. but Virg. for the sake of variety and according to his usual custom . . . . alters the latter clause,
Iamque propinquabant scopulo metamque tenebant,
and instead of saying 'with bows abreast and hulls side by side' says 'with bows abreast, and furrow the salt waters with their long keels.' Thus used, the epithet' longa is not only not otiosum,' "but in the highest degree useful and ornamental; (a) because it serves to place before the mind not only the length of the vessels, with their consequent size and stateliness, but their parallel position with respect to their length, and (b) because it thus prepares for the succeeding account (v. 186) of the one vessel passing the other, not of the whole, but only by part of its length, nec tota tamen illa prior praeeunte carina." Henry. 159.] Scopulo,' the place where they were to turn, v. 124.
160.] Medio seems to mean 'half-way, medio in gurgite' being = 'media in via per gurgitem.'
161.] "Ratem rexit" v. 868 below: cursus regebam" 6. 350: "clavum regit" 10. 218. So". gubernator."
163.] Litus ama, as we talk of hugging, the shore.' Comp. "amat Ianua limen" Hor. 1 Od. 25. 3. 'Litus here is the rock, which Gyas wished to pass as closely as possible as Antilochus is advised to pass the goal by Nestor, Il. 23. 338 foll. From dexter' and 'laevas 'it appears that they were to pass the goal on the left. Stringat graze' gives briefly what Hom.1. c. expresses more fully, ἐγχριμφθήτω Ὡς ἄν τοι πλήμνη γε δοάσ σεται ἄκρον ἱκέσθαι Κύκλου ποιητοῖο.
Possibly the diminutive 'palmula' may be intended further to express the delicacy of the operation. Comp. Prop. 4. 3. 23, "Alter remus aquas, alter tibi radat arenas; Tutus eris; medio maxuma turba mari est."
164.] Alii,' others, who have not the command of the way. 166.] 'Iterum' belongs to 'revocabat.'
167.] Revocabat: "a cursu quem ingressus erat" Wagn. rightly. It might possibly be explained rursus vocabat,' but this would be less likely. 168.] Propiora,' the waters nearer to the rock.
170.] 'Radit iter: radit mare remis, ut alibi." Heyne. Rather, 'facit viam radendo litora.' Comp. 3. 700., 7. 10, and the passage from Prop. quoted on v. 163. "Radit iter liquidum" below, v. 217, contains a different image.
171.] Tuta,' safe from any danger of collision, there being no rock to graze. 'Metis' seems merely a poetical plural, to avoid the repetition of the same termination.
172.] Menelaus is angry at being passed by Antilochus, II. 1. c., but the tears are borrowed from Diomed, ib. 335, when Apollo takes away his whip just as he is trying to pass Eumelus.
Ossibus' is sometimes taken as a second dative, epexegetic of 'iuveni :' but it seems simpler to regard it as an abl., as it doubtless is in 9. 66, duris dolor ossibus ardet."
Nec lacrimis caruere genae, segnemque Menoeten,
Hortatur Mnestheus: Nunc, nunc insurgite remis,
174.] The contracted form 'socium (= 'sociorum') is found in prose, Livy 22, 27 &c.
176.] Subit' i. q. succedit,' = 'comes in his place. Rector' and 'magister' are here the same (comp. vv. 224, 867, below 6. 353), though 'magister' is sometimes (not in Virg.) used of the captain.
177.] Clavus' usually means the tiller ("fustis gubernaculi" Serv.): here however we must either give it the sense of the rudder, or suppose that Virg. expresses himself loosely, meaning merely that Gyas turns the tiller so as to bring the ship towards the rock.
178.] Gravis,' partly with age, partly with his soaked dress, as the next line explains. Comp. 6. 359, "madida cum veste gravatum."
179.] In veste' 4. 518. 'Fluens' seems to combine the notion of dripping ("Ille, cruore fluens, cubito tamen allevat artus" Ov. M. 7. 343) with that of the clothes hanging about him.
182.] Rident' refers to the time mentioned in v. 180. Menoetes is drying himself on a rock: the Trojans had laughed when they saw him falling, laughed when they saw him rising and swimming: and now they
laugh when they see him disgorging the water. 'Risere' is rather aoristic, and of course is not put for 'riserant,' which would make a sharper contrast with 'rident' and bring the latter out into greater prominence than Virg. intends. Pectore' here stands for the stomach.
185.] Capit ante locum' seems to mean gets the choice of water, or gets the desired water first, viz. the water near the goal. Scopulo propinquat,' not as in v. 159, comes near the goal as he advances, but gets the near side to the goal. Comp. vv. 202, 203.
187.]Premit,' if taken literally, must refer not to contact behind but to contact along-side.
188.] Per ipsos:' he mixes with his men, and addresses them personally.
189.] Insurgite remis' 3. 207.
190.] Mnestheus tells his men that they once fought by the side of Hector, and afterwards, when Troy fell, were chosen by himself as his own comrades. To understand 'Hectorei' as Troiani' would be rather feeble, and would make 'socii' somewhat tautologous with 'comites.' Mnestheus speaks as if he had raised a company to sail with Aeneas.
Delegi comites; nunc illas promite viris,
Non iam prima peto Mnestheus, neque vincere certo; Quamquam o!-Sed superent, quibus hoc, Neptune, dedisti;
Extremos pudeat rediisse; hoc vincite, cives,
Et prohibete nefas.
Olli certamine summo
Procumbunt; vastis tremit ictibus aerea puppis,
Namque furens animi dum proram ad saxa suburguet
192.] 'Gaetulis Syrtibus' above v.51. 193.] I. e. when they were sailing from Crete, 3. 190 foll. The headland of Malea was proverbially dangerous. 'Sequacibus' well expresses the leaping waves, which in rough weather when the wind is abaft seem as if they were about to poop the ship.
194.] Non iam' 4. 431. There seems a mixture of pride and modesty in Mnestheus' mentioning his own name, 'being the man I am.' Prima, τὰ πρωτεία, ν. 338.
195.] Quamquam o' is the contraction of a wish. Comp. 11. 415, Quamquam o si solitae quicquam virtutis adesset!" The meaning plainly is that in a contest like this it is no disgrace not to be first, but it is to be last; the former contingency cannot be certainly gained, but the latter may be certainly averted; Mnestheus accordingly leaves the one in the hands of Neptune, and urges his crew to see to the other.
196.] It is very doubtful whether 'hoc' is to be taken together with 'nefas' or separately, 'hoc vincite' meaning' gain this point.' 'Vincere nefas' might stand, in the sense of overcoming a disgrace (comp. v. 155 above); but 'hoc vincite,' as explained above, seems more idiomatic, and brings out better the allusion to the victory that Mnestheus has dis
claimed v. 194. 'Let this triumph be yours, not to have been last.'
198.] Procumbunt' stronger than 'incumbunt:' they throw themselves forward. Ictibus' of the oars, like "verberat" 10. 208. 'Aerea' =‘aera
199.] "Solum' navis est mare: quod subtrahi videtur cum navis celeriter percurrit," Gossrau.
200.] Fluit rivis' 8. 445. 'Undiqueis Homer's πάντοθεν ἐκ μελέων.
201.] Viris,' the crew of the Pristis. Ipse casus' seems to mean, chance and nothing but chance, mere chance. 'Honorem,' of getting before the Centaur, and so not being last, v. 196 above.
202.] Furens animi' like "fidens animi" 2. 61.
203.] Interior between Mnestheus and the rock: see on v. 185, and comp. v. 170. Iniquo,' apparently because he was hemmed in between the rock and his rival's ship close following him. They seem to have sailed out to sea (v. 124), so that there cannot have been a naturally narrow passage between the rock and the shore.
204.]Procurrentibus,' jutting out, probably under water.
205.] Murex' seems to have been used technically of a jagged piece of rock resembling a shell fish.
Obnixi crepuere, inlisaque prora pependit.
Fertur in arva volans, plausumque exterrita pennis 215
206.] Obnixi,' dashed against the rock. So of butting' G. 3. 222, 233. Crepuere, being broken, v. 209. "Pependit, being entangled in the rock: comp. 10. 303, "inflicta vadis dorso dum pendet iniquo."
207.] Morantur,' they are brought to a standstill, and raise loud outcries, as would be natural for the competitors in a race.
208.] Trudis' seems to have been an instrument like a boat-hook.
210.] Comp. v. 231 below, "Hos successus alit."
211.] Agmen' seems rightly explained of the motion of oars, in the same way as the word is applied to a serpent, v. 90 above, to a river 2. 782. "Ventis vocatis' 3. 253. Here as there it seems simply to mean with the winds at his call,' as to suppose that Mnestheus formally invoked the winds would scarcely be consistent with Cloanthus gaining his victory by invoking the sea-gods.
212.] Prona,' sloping down towards the shore, aperto unobstructed, as there was no longer any rock near which they had to keep. Decurrit' hurries down to the shore. Comp. 8. 548, "Pars celera prona Fertur aqua, segnisque secundo defluit amni.
214.] This line explains how the dove comes to be in the cave. 'Dulces nidi: see on G. 4. 17. 'Latebroso in pumice,' adapted for shelter.
215.] Fertur in arva volans' is said generally of the direction she
takes, plausum - ingentem' noting her first fluttering and tumultuous escape, mox-alas' the after stage, when she recovers herself and flies swiftly and smoothly.
216.] Tecto' is apparently to be joined with 'exterrita like "exterrita somno Enn. Ann. 1. fr. 34. The 'tectum' is the same as the spelunca.' 'Quieto:' the sky is undisturbed, and the alarming cause which had driven the bird from the cave does not follow her when she is on the wing. every thing suggests calm, and she falls in with the temper of the heaven.
217.] A line well known for its imitative rhythm. Radit iter liquidum' is possibly a translation of λευρὸν οἶμον αἰθέρος ψαίρει πτέροις Aesch. Prom. 394, radit' being used here not of grazing or skirting a boundary, but of skimming a smooth surface, as in Ov. M. 10. 654, "Posse putes illos sicco freta radere passu,' of the race between Hippomenes and
218.] Ultima aequora,' the latter part of the course. 'Ipsa,' 'with the way she had on her,' is explained by 'impetus ipse' in the next line. The force which Mnestheus has employed in the critical moment of turning the goal carries him swiftly on, as it were without further exertion, just as the dove when fairly launched into the sky appears not to be moving her wings.