Page images
PDF

spectator of the murder of his aged monarch, might very naturally, after that, represent him as about to slay a woman.”

Quum limina Vestæ, &c. “When I espy the daughter of Tyndarus, keeping closely within the threshold of Vesta, and lurking silent in a secret place."-569. Tyndarida. Helen, called here, by a feminine patronymic, Tyndaris, because the daughter of Leda, who was the wife of Tyndarus.—570. Erranti, passimque, &c. “To me as I wander along, and direct my look towards all surrounding objects.” Cuncta, as denoting union or aggregation, and as therefore more intensive in its character, is employed here instead of omnia. Heyne makes Æneas to have descended from the palace-roof, but to be still wandering through the deserted palace.It would rather appear that he had by this time left the palace, but was still on the high ground of the citadel, where the temple of Vesta stood. Compare line 632.

571. Illa sibi infestos, &c. The order is as follows : Illa, communis Erinys Trojce et patrice, præmetuens Teucros, infestos sibi ob edersa Pergama, &c., abdiderat sese.—573. Præmetuens. “ Fearing in anticipation," i. e. anticipating, in her fears, the vengeance of.574. Invisa. “A hateful object.” Heyne and others translate invisa “unseen," or “screened from the view." This, however, wants spirit. Voss connects it with aris, "an object of loathing unto the very altar,” “ und sass, den Altären ein Abscheu."

575. Exarsere ignes animo. “The fires (of indignation) blazed forth in my soul.”—576. Et sceleratas sumere poenas. “And to inflict the vengeance which her guilt deserved.” Wunderlich makes sceleratas poenas equivalent to poenas sceleris.

577. Scilicet here expresses bitter irony. “Forsooth.”—Patriasque Mycenas. “And her native Mycenæ," i. e. her native land of Greece. MI ycenas is figuratively used for Græciam. Any particular reference to the city of Mycenæ itself would be wrong, since the native place of Helen was Sparta.—578. Partoque ibit regina triumpho. “And move along as a queen, a triumph having been obtained." Ibit equivalent to incedet, or ingredietur in Græciam urbem.

579. Conjugium. “Her husband," i. e. Menelaus. Put for conjugem.- Patres. For parentes. There are several complaints against this line made by the commentators : one of which is, that it would be impossible for Helen to see her parents, because Jove was her immortal sire, while Leda and Tyndarus were both by this time numbered with the dead. Wagner, therefore, excludes the line as spurious from the text. It may be urged in defence of it, however, that Æneas speaks generally, and under strong excitement. An acquaintance with the more minute parts of Helen's history would change the hero into a mythologist.-580. Phrygiis ministris. “By Trojan attendants,” i. e. Trojan captives assigned to her as slaves.

581. Occiderit ferro Priamus. “ Shall Priam have fallen by the sword.”—583. Non ita. “It shall not be so.”—Nullum memorabile nomen, i. e, no glory.-584. Victoria. “Such a victory.”—585. Exstinxisse tamen nefas, &c. “Yet shall I be commended for having destroyed an abandoned female, and exacted from her well-merited punishment; and it will delight me to have sated my bosom with the burning desire of vengeance, and to have rendered full atonement (in her) to the ashes of my countrymen.”—Nefas for nefariam feminam.-587. Ultricis flammæ. The genitive after explésse a verb of plenty.

588. Jactabam. “I was rapidly revolving.”-Ferebar. “ Was getting hurried away,” i. e. from all self-controi.- Quum mihi, &c. * When my benign mother, having confessed herself the goddess, presented herself unto me," &c.-592. Prehensum. Supply me.

594. Quis indomitas, &c. “What so great cause of resentment arouses (this) ungovernable wrath."-595. Aut quonam nostri, &c. “ Or whither hath thy regard for us departed ?" Literally, “ gone for thee.” There appears to be some reference in this to the aged Anchises, beloved in earlier days by Venus, and whom her son is now abandoning, instead of showing regard for his goddess parent by rescuing his father from barm. — 597. Superet conjurne Creüsa. “ Whether thy wife Creusa still survive.”

599. Et ni mea cura resistat, &c. “ And whom, unless my care oppose, (as oppose it does,) the flames will by this time have swept away (with them), and the hostile sword have drunk (their blood).” Observe the peculiar force of the present tense in resistat, indicating an action still going on. The guardian care of Venus is continually interposing to save, and the flames and hostile sword are as continually attempting to destroy. It is idle, therefore, to say, with some commentators, that resistat, tulerint, and hauserit, are for restitisset, tulissent, and hausisset.

601. Non tibi Tyndaridis, &c. Troy falls by the stern decree of fate, and Helen and Paris are but the intermediate agents in affecting its downfall.

604. Quce nunc obducta, &c. “Which, now drawn over, renders dull thy mortal vision for thee belolding, and (all) humid spreads darkness around,” i. e. and with its humid or misty veil conceals from thee the movements of higher powers. The nubes or “cloud” here meant is the Homeric végos, which conceals the gods from mortal view, and by which they at times rescue their favourites in the heat of battle, when about to fall before some overpowering foe. -606. Tu ne qua parentis, &c. “Do thou, (therefore), fear not any commands of thy parent," i. e. of me thy parent. These commands are given at line 619. Heyne finds fault with the present verse. He regards the words tu ne qua, &c., as “parum commode interposita.Wagner, on the other hand, maintains, very correctly, that they assign the reason why Venus removes the veil from the eyes of her son, namely, in order that he may trust in her and obey her commands; and that the passage in a prose forin would run as follows : ac, ne forte matris jussa timeas, omnem nubem eripiam, &c. He therefore places a colon after eripiam, instead of the semicolon of the common text.

608. Disjectas moles, &c. “ Massive fragments scattered about, and stones torn away from stones.”—Moles, i. e. vast fragments of masonry originally belonging to the walls and stately edifices of Troy.-609. Mixtoque undantem, &c. “ And waving smoke with intermingled dust.” A graphic description of the overthrow of a city, which is partly destroyed by fire, partly levelled to the ground. -610. Neptunus. Virgil here imitates the passage in Homer, where Neptune and Apollo are represented as destroying the ram part of the Greeks. (Il. xii, 17, seqq.) In this passage, and in what immediately follows, the deities most hostile to the Trojans are enumerated; namely, Neptune, Juno, and Minerva.

612. Hic. Pointing to another quarter.Juno Scoas sævissima, &c. “ Juno, most implacable, occupies foremost the Scæan gates.” Juno,

in advance of the rest, takes her station at the Scæan gate.-The Scæan gate faced the sea and the encampment of the Greeks. Hence most frequent mention is made of it by the poets. It was, moreover, the gate through which the Greeks entered the city. Troy had five other gates.-613. Socium agmen. “Her confederate band," i. e. the Greeks.-Ferro accincta. « Girt with the steel.” So Voss : “umgürtet mit Stahl.”

615. Respice. “ Mark well.” Respicio indicates more here than the common adspicio. It implies, also, attende et considera.—616. Nimbo effulgens, &c. “Refulgent to the view with her (gleaming) tempest-cloud, and cruel Gorgon.” Most commentators make nimbus signify here “a bright cloud.” This, however, is erroneous. A bright cloud would indicate a propitious deity, whereas a dark and stormy cloud denotes an angry one. The nimbus is a dark, stormcloud, surrounding the form of the hostile Minerva, and rendered fearfully gleaming, along with the person of the goddess, by the fires of Troy - Gorgone særâ. Alluding to the ægis of Minerva, on which was the head of the Gorgon Medusa.

617. Ipse Pater. “Father Jove himself." Jupiter was not personally hostile to the Trojans, but he was compelled to obey the decree of fate.- 618. In Dardana arma, i. e. against those of the Trojans who still resisted. Literally, “ against the Trojan arms.”—619. Eripe fugam. “Snatch a hasty flight.”—Labori. "Alluding to his exertions in the fight.—620. Abero. Supply a te.

622. Dirce facies. “ Appalling forms.”—623. Numina magna deúm. “ The mighty divinities of the gods,” i. e. the mighty gods.— The diroe facies and the numina mugna are in strictness to be blended, and indicate, in fact, the same objects, the appalling forms of the greater divinities.

624. Considere in ignes. “To sink amid the flames.”—625. Neptunia. Troy is called “ Neptunian," because its walls were built by Neptune in conjunction with Apollo.- 626. Ac veluti, &c. Construe as follows: Ac veluti quum agricolæ, in summis montibus, certatim

stant eruere antiquam ornum. accisam ferro crebrisque bipennibus, No apodosis, it will be perceived, follows here, yet one may easily be supplied by the mind. Troy seemed to fall, just as an aged tree yields to the frequent blows of the axe on the lofty mountains.— Ornum. Much of the beauty of the comparison lies in this single term. The ancient and time-honoured city of Troy is likened to the aged tree that has for many a year withstood the blast upon the mountains.

627. Ferro accisam, &c. “Cut into by the steel, and frequent (strokes of) axes.”—628. Instant eruere certatim. “ Vying with each other, press on to overthrow.”Illa usque minatur, &c. “It keeps continually threatening, and, trembling in its foliage, nods with shaken top.”—629. Comam. The foliage of the tree is beautifully likened to the locks on the human head.—Concusso vertice. Because the shaking of the tree under the frequent blows is most perceptible at the top.“ 630. Supremum congemuit, &c. “ It hath groaned deeply its last, and, torn away from the mountain-tops, hath dragged ruin along with it.” By ruinam is here meant other trees, as well as earth, shrubs, stones, &c., which it has carried along with it in its fall.

632. Descendo. “I descend (from the citadel),” i. e. from the height on which the citadel, palace, and other buildings stood. Consult note on line 570.-Ducente deo. “The goddess being my guide."

[graphic]

Limitles ting me onward” Dezs is here equivalent to the cres 7 g. un m es the place of day. The use of deos for deals

regos mung she Greek tragie writers -633. Expedior. “I mak my way in

Literly. I am extricated,” i. e. from every darrer - me. Este objeets to this repetition of farmce, after tusentezu a se puedes line, and thinks that Virgil would have cor REVIS

v e Eneid. Bat it is, in reality, intentional s pars of ste peers for fimmm2 stands opposed to fiammam, just

534 Porten. I 738 come. Sopply as a me or mihi. -6 Foders

ID un beur?-637. Abre excisá, &e. “Refuses * um sene i mere ette Don that Troy is destroyed.

s tater s ig.de - Whose tlood is full of youthful war. Liz

u res in respect of i.e. by reason of your 30 cu ut sine Greek-$39. Stidurgue suo stant robotl. ei tu

e mon chers is sime d -640. Vos agitate fugam. D emak royons for it. With citate supply animo, Cou tebere c. sinds of This is the explanation of

[ocr errors]

Docere. Te prolon. Fie pour -642. Has sedes, i.e.

s e sperm, de Enero, snad more than enough (1$ tare benet e sint. 23 are survived a captured Romu se pare mi se of Tres by Hereules, in the

[ocr errors]

N am. Ge- Do te derart, having taken a de la v dry, as shes hit ces (for the tomb).”. W a

para ter she rst tes cuoneeting the interv e

wei stes a Dose esaphatie reading → se s spears en tre site

weet on the ground, a v et ami s boste compared s bods, while in this Vai

ant au ni peecared for the funeral Lil larins Dresses for the last time. acervels que brince repeating the word,

pure lant. er tessistes, 5by my own S

h are per ingres. sine per interpretation of De

t ersise. The foe per me, and will seek o

la maastas he was the band of some one they we will say them in reste en end to his misery, theme me to be his speed-65 Facilis jactura

i s me easy to the His corpse will id suuria the fen dus dins de sattes comparatively

The

l a temi, hesremer, was general regarded as a 42.

my felles-men He was enfeebled by pe r the sumbeboes of Jore.-Annos the poog

I Cong out existence.

is enfeebled and S

t art she years of his existence as 1ey roll & P a

Beershed on me with
1 sts of a thunder, and duele me the fire (o the skies),"

sted wall his handelt
W

according to the
e with than er b egee. Die baring divulged
emus T e am

2 as some maintain ជាងនឯងជានិ ក្នុង

s

enfeebled by

es existence.

650. Fixus. “Fixed in his resolve.”-65). Effusi lacrimis. For effusi in lacrimas. “Burst into tears and begged."" Equivalent to multis cum lacrimis oravimus.—652. Vertere. “To ruin.” Put for evertere. 653. Fatoque urguenti incumbere. “ And to hasten the doom that was urging on to overwhelm them."-654. Inceptoque et sedibus, &c. “And remains stedfast in his resolve, and in the same position as before.”Isdem. Contracted for iisdem.

655. Rursus in arma feror. “Again I fly to arms.” Compare lines 671, 672.-656. Quod consilium. “What expedient."-657. Efferre pedem. Equivalent to discedere.—658. Tantum nefas. “So. unhallowed an idea.”—660. Et sedet hoc animo. “And this resolution remains fixed in thy bosom.”—661. Isti leto. “For that death which. thou covetest.” Observe the force of iste as referring to the person spoken to.—662. Jamque aderit, &c. “Pyrrhus will even soon be here.”—663. Qui obtruncat. “Who butchers.”

664. Hoc erut, quod. “Was it for this that.” Literally, “ was it this on account of which.” Quod the accusative, governed by ob understood.—665. Eripis. “Thou dost rescue me from dangers," i. e. thou hast brought me here in safety through so many perils. Observe the beautiful use of the present tense. The hero wanders, hack in thought to the scenes through which he has just passed, and fancies that his goddess mother is still shielding him from harm.

Mediis in penetralibus. “Amid the inmost recesses of my home.” -666. Juxta. “By their side.”-668. Arma. On his return home, Æneas may be supposed to have disarmed himself.-668. Vocat lux ultima victos. “Their last hour now calls upon the vanquished.” Equivalent to manet nos mors, or moriendum est, but far more powerfully expressed.

669. Sinite instaurata revisam prælia. “Suffer me to revisit and renew the conflicts (in which I have already engaged).”-670. Nunquam. A strong negation for nullo modo.-673. Ecce autem. “When lo !”—674. Hærebat. “Kept clinging to them.”—Tendebat. “ Held out.”

675. Periturus. “Resolved to perish.”—676. Expertus. “Having tested their efficacy.”—678. Conjut quondam tua dicta. “Once called your wife.” Whom you once regarded as your wife, but now abandon to the foe.

680. Monstrum. “A prodigy."—681. Manus inter moestorumque, &c. “ Amid the embraces and parting words of his sorrowing parents," i. e. while his sorrowing parents held him in their fond embrace, and were bidding a last farewell to each other. We have made ora here, with Thiel, equivalent to sermones. Most commentators, however, explain it by oculos.-682. Ecce levis summo, &c. “Lo! from the very top of the head of Iulus, a light, tuft-like flame seemed to pour forth bright coruscations, and this flame, harmless in its touch, to lick his soft locks and feed around his temples.”—Apex and flamma are synonymous here,

685. Trepidare, the historical infinitive for trepidabant.Flagran. tem. “Seemingly blazing.”-686. Fontibus. Put for fonte, and this for aquâ.-688. Palmas. Consult note, i. 93.

690. Hoc tantum. “ This only do I entreat of thee.”-691. Atque hæc omina firma. “And confirm these omens," i. e. put the stamp of truth upon them, by giving us some sign clearly expressive of thy will.—693. Intonuit lævum. “ It thundered on the left.” This was a good omen. Compare the remark of Minelli: “ Quæ enim nobis læra,

« PreviousContinue »