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Jugera ruris erant; nec fertilis illa juvencis,
Nec pecori opportuna seges, nec commoda Baccho 130. Tamen hic pre- Hic rarum tamen in dumis olus, albaque circùm
Lilia, verbenasque premens, vescumque papaver,
Nocte domum, dapibus mensas onerabat inemptis. 134. Ille erat primus Primus vere rosam, atque autumno carpere poma : carpere
Et cùm tristis hyems etiam nunc frigore saxa
Æstatem increpitans seram, Zephyrosque morantes.
Primus abundare, et spumantia cogere pressis · 141. Erant illi tiliæ, Mella favis: illi tiliæ, atque uberrima pinus : atque
Quotque in flore novo pomis se fertilis arbos
Jainque ministrantem platanum potantibus umbras.
Nunc age, naturas, apibus quas Jupiter ipse
mountain, and city of Cilicia in Asia Minor. rycian, particularly in the culture of bees, Pompey made war upon the Cilicians; some he returned to his main subject. He was of whom he brought and planted in Cala- the first to abound, &c. Fætis : in the sense bria near Tarentum. The old man here of fæcundis. mentioned, might have been one of them. 141. Favis : the comb—those cells which Relicti : barren-neglected, not worth tilling. contain the honey. Tiliæ : the linden, or Dr. Trapp renders it hereditary ; left him lime-tree. by his ancestors.
142. Quoique pomis, &c. The meaning 128. Nec illa seges fertilis: nor was that is, that as many blossoms as his fertile trees land fit for ploughing, nor suitable for pas- put forth in the spring, so much fruit they ture, nor proper for the vine. Fertilis : in had in autumn. There were no false blooms, the sense of apta, or commoda.
neither did they fail to bring all to maturi129. Seges. This word most commonly ty. Poma is to be supplied with matura. signifies the crop after it is sown and com The word properly means apples, but it is ing forward to maturity. Here it means the used for all kind of fruit: as in the present soil or land itself.
130. Albaque lilia circùm : the white lilies 144. Distulit ulmos : he planted (transwere most celebrated, and the best known planted) his elms in rows. Seras. Ruæus among the ancients.
says, lardè crescentes, slow growing. But 131. Verbenas: the herb vervain. It was the poet may mean, far grown, or sufficiently highly esteemed by the Romans. Premens: grown to be fit for transplanting; , as he in the sense of plantans. Vescum papaver : observes with respect to the other trees here the white poppy, called vescum, esculent, or mentioned. This is the opinion of Davideatable; because its seeds were roasted by son and Valpy. the ancients, and eaten with honey.
145. Spinos. Spinus, is the sloe tree. 137. Comam: in the sense of frondes. These were sufficiently grown to produce Hyacinthi. This is the reading of Heyne fruit; and the plane tree, to afford a consideand Vossius, and of several ancient manu rable shade, before he transplanted them. scripts. It appears to be approved of by 147. Iniquis spatiis: narrow bounds-inValpy, although he adopts the common sufficient room. reading, acanthi.. Heyne leaves out tum, 149. Nunc age. The poet now proceeds which is also retained by some editors. to treat of the polity of the bees—the me
139. Ergò idem primus. Having men thod of desositing their honey-the regu. tioned the advantage, which a diligent cul- lar management of their affairs-their obetivation of his fields brought to the old Co. dience to their sovereign, &c.
Addidit, expediam : pro quâ mercede, canoros 150
150. Pro qua tanquam Curetum sonitus crepita:tiaque æra secutæ,
mercede, illæ secute ca
noros sonitus Dictæo cæli regem pavêre sub antro. Solæ communes natos, consortia tecta
163. Hæ solæ omnium
160 Prima favis ponunt fun wamina : deinde tenaces
161. Tanquam prima
fundamina favis Suspendunt ceras : aliie, spem gentis, adultos Educunt fætus : aliæ purissima mella Stipant, et liquido distendunt nectare cellas. Sunt, quibus ad portas cecidit custodia sorti; 165 165. Sunt aliæ, quiInque vicem speculantur aquas et nubila cæli,
bus custodia Aut onera accipiunt venientûm, aut, agmine facto,
166. Quæque invicem Ignavum fucos pecus à præsepibus arcent. Fervet opus, redolentque thymo fragrantia mella. Ac veluti lentis Cyclopes fulmina massis
170 Cùm properant: alii taurinis follibus auras
150. Expediam: in the sense of descri 159. Exercentur: in the sense of laborant. bam. Pro quâ mercede. According to fable, Septa: the enclosures of their hives. Saturn intending to devour his infant son 160. Narcissi. The flower of Narcissus, Jupiter, he was concealed by his mother
or daffodil, forms a kind of cup in the midamong the Curetes, or Corybantes, lier priests, dle, which is supposed to contain the tear of the sound of whose brazen armour and cym- the youth Nurcissus, who pined away with bals, as they revelled, prevented his cries the love of himself. See Ecl. ii. 48. from betraying him to his father. It is said that Melissus was then king of Crete, whose
163. Educunt adultos fætus: they nourish daughters, Melissæ nourished Jupiter with
or tend upon their young, till they are full the milk of a goat and honey. Hence arose
grown: or, they lead forth their full grown the story of his being nourished by a goat young. Servius prefers the former sense:
as also Ruæus. called Amalthea and bees, Melissæ being the Greek naine for bees. For which reason,
164. Liquido : in the sense of puro. Necthe goat was translated to the heavens, and tare : nectar here, evidently, is to be taken his horns given to the nymphs, with this for honey—the purest, and most refined quality added to them, that whatever they part of it. should ask for, should flow from them plen 166. Aquas: in the sense of pluviam. teously: and for the service, which the bees
168. Fucos : the drones, a lazy herd. rendered on this occasion, they were endow. These are bees that make no honey. They ed by Jupiter with an extraordinary degree have no stings, and they do not assist the of sagacity and wisdom, as a reward. others in their labors. Prosepibus. See
152. Dictæo: an adj. from Dicte, a city note, verse 104. supra. and mountain in Crete. On this mountain, it is said, Jupiter was brought up.
169. Opus fervet : the work glows it goes 153. Consortia : in the sense of communia.
on briskly. 154. Agitant : in the sense of ducunt.
170. Cùm properant Cyclopes. The CyThe poet here speaks of the bees as living clops are said to have forged the thunderin a regular, and well organized society.
bolts of Jove. To this the poet alludes. 155. Certos penates: in the sense of firas This comparison of the bees in their labors, domos.
with those workmen of Jupiter in their 157. Experiuntur : they practise or use, shops, has been censured by some. Prope
158. Victu: for victui. See Ecl. 5, 29. rant : in the sense of fabricuntur. Invigilant : watch over--have the care of 172. Alii accipiunt: simply: some blow providing. Pacto federe:. in the sense of the bull-hide bellows. Lacu : in the trougla certa lege.
Accipiunt, redduntque : alii stridentia tingunt
Non aliter, si parva licet componere magnis, 177. Habendi mella Cecropias innatus apes amor urget habendi,
178. Oppida sunt curæ Munere quamque suo. Grandævis oppida curæ, grandævis
Et munire favos, et Dædala fingere tecta.
• 180 181. Plenæ quoad cru- Crura thymo plenæ : pascuntur et arbuta passim, ra thymo
Et glaucas salices, casiamque, crocumque rubentem,
Et pinguem tiliam, et ferrugineos hyacinthos. 184. Est omnibus una Omnibus una quies operum, labor omnibus unus. quies
Manè ruunt portis, nusquam mora : rursus easdem 185 185. Rursus, ubi vesper admonuit easdem
Vesper ubi è pastu tandemn decedere campis
Fit sonitus, mussantque oras et limina circùm.
Nec verò à stabulis, pluviâ impendente, recedunt
Longiùs, aut credunt cælo, adventantibus Euris: 193. Tutæ ab pluvia Sed circùm tutæ sub mænibus urbis aquantur, et vento
Excursusque breves tentant : et sæpe lapillos, 194. Et sæpe tollunt
195 lapillos, ut
Ut cymbæ instabiles, fluctu jactante, saburram,
instabiles cymbæ tollunt sabur. Tollunt : his sese per inania nubila librant. ram, fluctu jactante eas: Illum adeò placuisse apibus mirabere morem, his lapillis
Quòd nec concubitu indulgent, nec corpora 'segnes
NOTES. 175. In numerum : they raise their arms 189. Thalamis : in the sense of cellis. in regular order, making a sort of harmony 190. Suus: in the sense of proprius. Ruwith the strokes of their hammers.
æus says, conveniens. Jamblicus informs us that the sound of 191. Stabulis. See note, verse 104. supra. the smith's hammer led Pythagoras to in 192. Euris. Eurus, the east wind, here vent the monochord, an instrunient for mea put for wind in general: the species for the suring the quantities, and proportions of genus. sounds geometrically.
193. Aquantur. This verb appears to be 177. Cecropias : Attic, or Athenian bees, used in the sense of the middle voice of the so called from Cecrops, the first king of Greeks: they water themselves. This manAthens. The Attic honey was inuch cele ner of expression is common with the poet. brated.
Ruæus says, hauriunt aquas. 178. Quamque suo munere: each one in 195. Saburram : ballast. This is some his own office-department.
ponderous substance, as sand, gravel, iron, 179. Dædala: an adj. from Dedalus, a &c. that light vessels usually take on board very ingenious artificer of Athens. The to render them steady. word, as here used, signifies any thing arti 198. Nec indulgeni, &c. This account of ficial, or curiously and ingeniously wrought. the production of bees here given by the
180. Minores: in the sense of juniores. poet, is justly exploded. It is found that no
181. Plence crura. The hairiness of the animal is produced without the concurrence legs of the bee is favorable to the retention of the sexes. However as this method was of the juices, which they collect from the the general received one among the ancients, flowers.
the poet might very well adopt it, whatever 132. Rubentem: yellow, or of a golden his own opinion might have been upon the hue. Ruæus says, rufum.
subject. Pliny says of the bees: Foetus 183. Ferrugineos: purple-dark red. quonam modo progenerarent, magna inter
184. Operum: in the sense of ab opere. eruditos, et subtilis quæstio juit: Apum enim Una: one and the same rest.
coitus visus est nusquam. This, however, 188. Oras: this Ruæus interprets by ves modern philosophers have solved in a są tistibulum. Mussant : they buzz-they make factory manner. They have found that the izzing noise.
laboring bees are of neither sex; that the
In Venerem solvunt, aut fætus nixibus edunt.
amor flcrum, et laritu Excipiat (neque enim plùs septima ducitur æstas) 207. Enim neque plus At genus immortale manet, multosque per annos quàm septima æstas JuStat fortuna domûs, et avi numerantur avorum.
citur ab illis
213. Rege amisso Diripuere ipsæ, et crates solvêre favorum. Ille operum custos ; illum admirantur ; et omnes 215
215. Ille est custos Circumstant fremitu denso, stipantque frequentes;
217. Sua corpora bello Et sæpe attollunt humeris, et corpora bello
219. Quidam homines Objectant. pulchramque petunt per vulnera mortem. inducli his signis, atque His quidam signis, atque hæc exempla secuti,
secuti hæc exempla pruEsse apibus partem divina mentis, et haustus 220 dentiæ apum dixere Æthereos dixere : Deum namque ire per omnes
221. Namque dixere
Deum Terrasque, tractusque maris, cælumque profundum. 223. Hinc dixere peHinc pecudes, armenta, viros, genus omne ferarum, cudes
drones alone have the male organ of gene- of its kings. Populi Parthorum: simply, the ration, and that the monarch is of the fe- Parthians. They are said to have been so male sex, She is wholly employed in the submissive to their king, as to kiss his feet, increase of her family, laying several thou- and to touch the ground with their lips, sand eggs every summer, in each of which when they approached him. Hydaspes: the is hatched a small white worm, which in due name of a river put, by meton. for the intime, changes itself into a drone or bee.- habitants of the country, through which it Concubitu : for Concubitui. See Ecl. v. 29. flowed.
199. Nec solvunt : nor do they debilitate There have been various opinions and their bodies in lust. Segnes: in the sense of conjectures with a view to reconcile the poet inertes vel inutiles. Edunt: in the sense with matters of fact. Hydaspes is a river of parturiunt. Nicibus : by labor, or tra- of India, and falling into the Indus, forms vail.
one of its branches. How it could be call200. Foliis : froin the leaves of flowers. ed Median, with any propriety, does not
201. Parvos Quirites : they raise up a king, appear. There might have been a small and little subjects. The bees are here called river by that name, rising in Media, to Quirites, by meton. taken from the Romans, which the poet alludes. Mr. Davidson who were sometimes called Quiriles from thinks the river Choaspes, which rises in Romulus, who was also called Quirinus.- Media, and passes through the province of See Æn. 1. 274.
Susiana, near Susa, one of the capitals of 204. Dedêre: in the sense of amiserunt. the Persian empire, is intendea. However
207. Septima Æstas. Aristotle informs this be, poets do not always confine themus that bees live six, and sometimes seven selves to historical or geographical preciyears; but if the swarm subsists nine or ten sion. years, it is considered fortunate.
212. Observant: in the sense of veneran208. At, in the sense of tamen.
tur. 210. Ægyptus. The name of the coun 213. Fidem: in the sense of societatem. try put, by meton. for the inhabitants. The 214. Crates : the structure or fabric. Ægyptians were very great admirers of their 215. Cuslos : in the sense of præses. monarchs, many of whom they deified. 216. Denso fremitu: with loud buzzing
211. Lydia : a country of Asia Minor, or humming. proverbial for its wealth, and the grandeur 220. Haustus : in the sense of spiritus.
Quemque sibi tenues nascentem arcessere vitas. 225 Deinde direre Scilicet huc reddi deinde, ac resoluta referri omnia resoluta scilicet Omnia : nec morti esse locum sed viva voiare reddi, ac referri huc
Sideris in numerum, atque alto succedere cælo 226. Sed omnia viva volare, quæque in nu
Si quando sedem augustam, servataque mella
Thesauris relines ; priùs haustu sparsus aquarum, 231. Sunt duo tempo
Ora fove, fumosque manu prætende sequaces. ra messis: unum sinnul Bis gravidos cogunt fætus, duo tempora messis. Pleias Taygete
Taygete simul os terris ostendit honestum 234. Aut ubi eadem Pleias, et Oceani spretos pede reppulit amnes : Pleïas
Aut eadem sidus fugiens ubi piscis aquosi,
224. Quemque nascentem: that every one, the materials of which it is composed, or the at his birth, derives tender life to himself, manner of the workmanship. Virgil emfrom hiin. Hinc : from hence—from God. phatically calls their hives, Dædala tecla.
225. Scilicet : in the sense of cerlè. Huc: Verse 179. supra. Heyne reads auguslam. hither-io God. Resoluta : in the sense of 229. Thesauris: in the sense of favis.dissoluta.
Priùs haustu, &c. Commentators do not 226. Nec locum, &c. Virgil here gives agree upon this passage; and it must be the opinions of those philosophers, who re confessed a difficult one. Davidson follows jected the doctrine of a vacuum, and atoms. Servius, who takes sparsus for spargens: maThey maintained that the universe was ani- king the meaning to be: First hold in your mated: that God was omnipresent: that all mouth draughts of water, spouting it upon animals received existence from him: that them. Dr. Trapp rejects sparsus for sparafter death they are all returned, and car gens, and thinks sparsus should be retained; ried back to him : that there is no room for thus : Fove ore haustus aquarum, take water extinction (morti) or loss of existence: that in your mouth; then by an ellipsis of the all, volare viva, fly alive into the order of his words; projice in modum pluviæ, spout it star, and take their station in high heaven. upon them in the manner of rain, which In other words, all transmigrate into other you cannot do without being wet yourself, beings in a perpetual round. This notion sparsus. Heinsius, Ruæus, Heyne, and some was held by many distinguished philoso- others read : Priùs haustu aquarum ora fove. phers of the heathen world. But it was far This, however, is not without objections. from the truth. All irrational animals perish If we could read haustum or haustus for hausat their death. Man alone is imniortal. tu, the passage would be easier ; then ore When unassisted reason is employed upon would be preferable to ora.
But whatever the subject of a future state of existence, it difficulties may attend the construction, the discovers its own weakness. The research- meaning is obvious. Heyne takes Fove ora es of philosophy serve only to bewilder the haustu aquarum, in the sense cf, tene vel conmind. All correct information upon that tine aquam haustam ore. subject must come through the medium of Davidson reads haustus, and ore. divine revelation. Pythagoras and his fol 230. Fumos: it is customary, at the prelowers strenuously maintained this doctrine. sent day, to drive or force the bees from the The Epicurians maintained the doctrine of hive with smoke. a varuum, and the atomic theory.
231. Gravidos fætus : in the sense of ple228. Si quando, &c. The poet now pro nos favos. The comb is properly the fælus ceeds to mention the proper seasons for open or production of the bees. Messis : gathering the hives. He gives directions how to ing or taking the honey : here called the proceed in the business, and notices the pas- harvest. sionate temper of the bees upon such occa 232. Taygele: one of the Pleïades, here sions.
put for the whole, by synec. This, and the Augustam. This is the reading of the best three following lines, is a beautiful circumeditions, and is supported by ancient manu- locution to express the rising and setting of scripts. Ruæus, Davidson, Valpy, and some these stars; the former is in the latter part others, have angustam. But if the poet in- of April, the latter about the end of October, tended to inform us that the hive was small, or the beginning of November. See Geor. he might have saved himself the pains. 1. 138. Besides, augustam is, by no means, an im 233. Amnes : in the sense of aquas. proper epithet. It is exactly in the spirit of 234. Sidus aquosi piscis. the constellation
*ry. It is well known that the bee-hive of the rainy fish. The Pisces here cannot be most exquisite piece of architecure, meant : for the sun does not enter that sign ier we regard the form of the comb, till some time in February. Probably the