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the scene of the Bacchic revels of the Spartan virgins, bacchari a depon. verb 'to celebrate the orgies of Bacchus,' has a passive participle, as is often the case. Cp. 30, 26.

Haemi] in Thrace, the scene of the exploits of Orpheus.

16-18. 'Happy he who knows the laws of nature, and has therefore ceased to fear natural phenomena and has learnt to despise the fabled terrors of Hades.' Vergil has been thought by some to refer to Lucretius by the felix qui potuit; but the reference is more general perhaps, to all such as having imbibed the Epicurean philosophy have learnt to assign phenomena to their natural causes, and to despise the fables of the popular superstition. The thoughts and expressions are from Lucretius [see Monr. on Lucr. 1, 78], more particularly the subjecit pedibus, cp. Lucr. quare religio pedibus subjecta vicissim opteritur. Tennyson thus expresses this side of the Lucretian philosophy:

'Till that hour
My golden work in which I told a truth
That stays the rolling Ixionian wheel
And numbs the Fury's ringlet-snake, and plucks
The mortal soul from out immortal hell,
Shall stand.'

19. fortunatus et ille] 'he too is blest,' perhaps felix is the stronger word. The two may differ almost as eurúxns and evdaíuar (felix), the latter representing the philosophical summum bonum.

20. The gods of the country.

21. populi fasces] 'the fasces (i.e. consulships, etc.) which the people bestow.'


23. Dacus] a people north of the Danube, which was the north boundary of the empire. The Daci were at war with Rome from B.C. 30 for twenty years. They descend from their mountains over the Danube when frozen, as the Getae and Sauromatae did according to Ovid (T. 3, 10).

tabularia, 'recordThe tabularium

27. ferrea jura] rigorous law.' offices.' These were usually in temples. of the capitol is still extant. It is put here generally for 'public business to which such records belonged.

29-8. Vergil enumerates all the labours, dangers, and crimes, which men face from motives of ambition or greed.

32. ut gemma bibat] 'that he may drink from a jewelled cup.'

Sarrano ostro] 'on a bed covered with Tyrian purple.' Sarra is a name of Tyre, the Hebrew Zor.

33. Another is a miser. defosso 'buried in the earth.' The custom of burying money continued to be common at least as late as the seventeenth century in England. incubat, 'broods over.'

34. rostris] the place from which the orators spoke in the forum : so called from being close to the columna rostrata, or column adorned with the beaks of the ships taken by Duillius.

35. cuneos] the 'wedge' shaped compartments into which the seats in a theatre were divided by the descending lanes for the audience to get to their places by. It is here used for the seats generally. geminatus again and again renewed.'


36. fratrum] i.e. their fellow citizens and even kinsmen ; a reference to the unnatural conflicts of the civil war.

37. exilio mutant] 'exchange for exile.'

39-41. With these stormy and guilty pursuits the peaceful employments of the farmer are contrasted.

"The farmer meanwhile has broken the soil with his curved ploughshare.' The perfect is used to express the action of the farmers as having gone on while these horrors were passing.

41. meritos] 'who have earned their sustenance by their labours.'


[An animated description of the start of a chariot-race, and the eagerness of horses and drivers in the course, imitated from Hom. II. 23, 262 sq. Chariot-races took place in the Circus Maximus.]

1-2. campum corripuere] an imitation of Homer's diéπρησσov medíolo [Il. 23, 364]: the perfect represents the instantaneousness of the action 'have in a moment plunged o'er

the plain.' effusi carcere, the carcer was a wooden barrier in front of the chariots, thrown down when they were to start. Lucretius (2, 263) has patefactis tempore puncto carceribus.


3. exultantia...pulsans] and throbbing fear tightens their beating hearts,” Homer's πάτασσε δὲ θυμὸς ἑκάστου. haurit = 'drains,' i.c. draws the blood, and causes a feeling of pressure or tightness.


4. verbere torto] 'with twisted thong.' verber, 'the blow is put for the instrument which inflicts it, the flagellum. Cp. 26, 4.

5. proni dant lora] 'lean forward and let out the reins,' i.e. give the horses their heads. The charioteers lean forward because the thong of the reins is round their bodies, and also because it is the natural attitude in their eagerness to urge on the horses.'

6-7. The chariots being small with low wheels naturally fly off the ground continually when going fast. Cp. II. 23, 368, ἅρματα δ ̓ ἄλλοτε μὲν χθονὶ πίλνατο πουλυβοτείρῃ ἄλλοτε δ ̓ ἀΐξασκε μετήορα.

8-9. fulvae...tollitur] cp. Hom. vrè dè σtéрvolo kovin ἵστατ ̓ ἀειρομένη ὥστε νέφος ἠὲ θύελλα.

humescunt...sequentum] The race is so close that the foam and breath from the mouth of the horse behind besprinkles the back of the driver in front, ep. Hom. πνοιῇ δ ̓ Εὐμήλοιό μετάφρενον εἰρέε τ ̓ ὤμω θέρμετο.


tantae curae] dat. of predicate. P. § 108.


[Two bulls fight for the possession of a heifer. A scene from the wild grazing districts of Italy.]

1. Sila] a mountain district in the country of the Buttii, in the toe of Italy. Mod. Aspromonte.

2-3. illi i.e. the bulls. alternantes, 'first one striking and then the other.'

4. in obnixos] as they dash foreheads together and push. Vergil is probably imitating the μετώπων ὀλοέντα πλήγματα of Sophocles.

5. longus Olympus] 'the wide welkin'; Olympus is here equivalent to caelum longus from Homer's paкрos Оλνμжоs. [Dr. Kennedy translates the far-off sky,' to which I cannot agree.]


9. amores] 'the beloved object.' C. quotes Catullus (45, 1) Acmen Septimius suos amores tenens in gremio.

10. excessit] the preterite used to represent the action more vividly: 'and with eyes fixed on his stall he has quitted his ancestral domain.' For regnis, cp. 1, 24.

12. instrato] 'unlittered,' non-strato. The difficulty is that instrato is elsewhere used as participle of insterno, e.g. Lucr. 5, 987, instrata cubilia fronde. Some remove the comma after cubili and construct instrata with frondibus.

14-15. irasci in cornua] 'to throw his wrath into his 19 horn,' copied from the eis képas Ovμovμevos of Eurip. Bacch. 742, which refers perhaps partly to the sidelong glance along the horn when the bull is charging εἰς κέρας παρεμβλέπων, Eur. Hel. 1558. obnixus 'pushing against, butting.'

16-18. ad pugnam proludit] 'plays the prelude to the fight.'

signa movet] 'starts,' lit. 'moves his standard,' cp. G. 4, 108, castris vellere signa.

19-23. The charge of the bull galloping from a distance is compared to a wave seen white-crested out at sea, then gradually approaching, and at last breaking upon the beach with terrific roar. Vergil is again copying Homer [Il. 4, 424] πόντῳ μὲν τὰ πρῶτα κορύσσεται, αὐτὰρ ἔπειτα χέρσῳ ῥηγνύμενον μεγάλα βρέμει, κ.τ.λ. longius 'far out in mid-sea.' Dr. K. joins it with trahit.

20. sinum trahit] 'draws its heaving curve,' L. L. utque volutus 'and when it has rolled upon the shore' for volutus est, K.

21. ipso monte] 'scarce less than the very crag it dashes against.'


22-3. at ima...verticibus] 'while the lowest depths of the sea-water boil up in eddies.' subjectat 'keeps throwing up from beneath.'


[Vergil in the passage immediately preceding this extract had been describing the customs of hot countries, he now gives a description of a winter in northern regions. The particulars he knows only by hearsay, and it may be observed that Ovid when describing a hard winter at Tomi seems to draw upon Vergil's facts almost more than on his own experience.]

1-2. at non] 'but not so,' i.e. as I have been describing in hot countries.

Scythiae gentes] Scythia means to a Roman of Vergil's day all that vast district north of the Black Sea towards Serica in the east, and with a northern limit quite undefined. Cf. I. 21. Maeotia unda the palus Maeotis or Sea of Azov. Aeschylus regarded it as on the northern extremity of the world.


Hister] the Danube, a rapid river and therefore 'muddy' from alluvial soil. Rhodope a range of mountains between the rivers Hebrus and Nestus. redit porrecta 'makes a sweep round.' medium sub axem 'towards the south.' Axis is used for the sky, cp. hesperius axis, Ov. M. 4, 214. 8. Cauri [or Cori] North-west winds.

9. tum] moreover.'


10-11. Neither at noon nor at evening.' equis stands for horses and chariot. This description of unbroken night comes from Homer (Od. 11, 15) who says of the Cimmerians, οὐδὲ ποτ ̓ αὐτοὺς ἠέλιος φαέθῶν ἐπιδέρκεται ἀκτίνεσσιν. Perhaps some indistinct report of the continuous night of a Polar winter had reached Greece. pallentes umbras 'yellow gloom.' K.

12-13. crustae] 'flakes of ice.' ferratos orbes 'wheels with iron tires.'

15. sera]' bronze vessels.' vulgo 'frequently.'

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