Page images
PDF

which lay on the left as he sailed from Samothrace to Tempyra. Cp. P. i. 3. 57, “hostis adest dextra laevaque a parte timendus.' 1. 34. pectora, * my heart; ' usually of the emotional rather than intellectual nature (Wilkins on Hor. Epp. i. 4. 6). l. 37. hortis. Ovid had a pleasure-garden, at the junction of the Clodian and Flaminian roads, about three miles from Rome : P. i. 8. 41, * Non meus amissos animus desiderat agros, Ruraque Paeligno conspicienda solo, Nec quos piniferis positos in collibus hortos Spectat Flaminiae Clodia iuncta viae, Quos ego nescio cui colui; quibus ipse solebam Ad sata fontanas, nec pudet, addere aquas: Sunt ubi, si vivunt, nostra quoque consita quaedam, Sed non et nostra poma legenda manu.' From T, iv, 8. 27 we learn that : it was his custom alternately to enjoy the life and society of the city, and to retire (* vacuos secedere in hortos') to his pleasure-garden for study and composition ; to which purpose, as well as to the giving of entertainments, gardens were constantly put by the Romans (so Gibbon finished writing his history in a summer-house in his garden : Memoirs, ed. Smith, i. 1 17). Among wealthy literary Romans, besides Ovid, who owned horti, were Sallust, Lucan, and Seneca. On the whole subject see Mayor, Iuv. i. 75. l. 38. lectule, a sofa used for reading and writing, the tablet being placed against the knee, which was raised for the purpose (Rich. 375, a.). l. 39. brumali luce, abl. of time when. l. 41. improba, * relentless,' persisting in its persecution of me. * Improbus' frequently denotes the absence of moderation and selfcontrol, * and as such is applied to the wanton malice of a persecuting power' (Conington on Geor. i. I 19). - ausim. Roby, 291 ; L. Gr. 619, 62o, explains this as an archaic form of the future subjunctive, formed from the present stem, like the Greek fut. in -αω. (Others regard it as a subj. formed from the perfect stem : see Wordsworth, Fragments and Specimens of Early Latin, Introd. p. 149). Ausim is found also in Am. ii. 4. 1 ; 16. 2 1 ; Rem. 7oo ; P. iv. 1 1. 1 1; 12. 15; 16. 41 : ausit in A. A. ii. 6oi. 1. 42. rigidas incutiente minas, ' while it is hurling at me its fierce threats : ' Am. i. 7. 45, Nonne satis fuerat timidae inclamasse puellae, Nec nimium rigidas intonuisse minas?' l. 43. * Let the storm have its will of the man. I yield ; but prythee let me put a limit to my poems, and the storm a limitto its violence at the same time.' quaeso is parenthetical.

[ocr errors]

I. 5 ff. This is one of the loci classici for ancient books. These were usually written on paper (carta) made from layers of the Egyptian papyrus, less commonly on parchment (membrama). The writing was on only one side ; the blank back of the page was stained with cedrus (cedro carta motetur), the resinous exudation of the juniper tree, which produced a yellow colour (iii. 1. 13, * quod neque sum cedro flavus nec pumice levis*). The scroll when finished was rolled round a staff, and thus called volumem. It was usual to write only one book of a work on 6ne such scroll, thus, infr. 1 17, Ovid speaks of the fifteen books of the Metamorphoses as mutatae, ter quinque volumima, formae. The ends of the staff (which did not protrude beyond the ends of the scroll) were painted, and from their resemblance to the human navel were called umbilici; but where greater finish was desired, bosses or knobs were attached to the ends of the umbilici, which were called cornua. The frontes, or edges of the two extremities of the roll around the cornua, were cut and smoothed with pumice stone (pumex). The lettering-piece containing the title of the book (titulus or imdex), was written on a narrow strip of parchment of a deep red colour (mimium), and fastened to the centre of the scroll, so as to hang down outside (Rich.s.v. index); though sometimes it was affixed to one of the umbilici, so as to hang from one of the fromtes (infr. Io9, Guhl and Koner, p. 531). Occasionally it was tied to the membrama, the exterior parchment case into which the roll was put to protect it from injury, and which was stained with a purple (vaccimium, 1. 5), or sometimes yellow colour (lutum). Thus Martial, iii. 2. 1o, says to his book * et te purpura delicata velet;' cp. Lucian, De Merced. cond. 41, δμοιοί eloru rois καλλίστοιs τούτοιs ßußAtois, äv xpvoro? μέν oi άμφαλοί (umbilici), nopq)vpâ δ' ἐκτοσθεν ή διφθέpa (membrama). The exact difference between the capsa and scrimium has not been ascertained; they were both circular (scrimia curva, Io6 infr.) boxes for holding books, papers, etc.

I. 71. augusta perhaps means * consecrated.'—H. Nettleship.

I. 87. ergö. L. Müller, De re Metrica, p. 337, shows that in the Augustan age there was an increasing tendency to shorten long final o. Thus Verg. has Pollio, nuntio, audeo ; Hor. in the Odes, Pollio, in the Satires and Epistles, eo, rogo, veto, dixero, obsecro ; quomodo, mentio, Pollio, scio ; Tibullus, desino ; Propertius, caedito, fimdo ; Ovid always Sulmo, Naso, and frequently amo, cano, nego, peto, rogo, leo, confero, desimo, odero, Curio, Gallio, Scipio, esto, credo, tollo, rependo, nemo, ergo. To this list add the parenthetic puto (e g. P. i. 3. 47), and Semo (F. vi. 214). It is natural that in Ovid, the last of the Augustan poets, who forms a connecting link with the next generation, we should find an increase of such metrical latitude. See Munro in Kennedy, L. Gr., p. 518 n. I. 88. Does media =* moderate?* or is it'equivalent to the p£oros of Theognis, roAAà μέσοισιν άρισra ?—H. Nettleship. II. 23. Notice the difference in meaning between, (1)quocumque adspicio here, (2) adspicias, conjectured by Heinsius here, and probably right in P. i. 3. 55, and (3) adspiceres, infr. 3. 21 : (1) is used when, as here, the writer is describing himself, and vividly putting his condition before our eyes ; (2) if he turns from himself to someone else (indefinite, and therefore subj.), and vividly pictures that person as present; (3) ifhe imagines some person not present, but who, if he had been, would have seen, etc. Again, (4) in II. 23, the perf. adspexi emphasises the certainty of the presence of death on all sides, wherever he has already looked. II. 53 ff. The contrast is between a violent death by drowning, which would be death * praeter naturam praeterque fatum' (Cic. Phil. i. § Io). and a soldier's death in battle, which would still be fato, as is seen from what Juppiter says about the slaying of Pallas by Turnus, Aen. x. 467— 472 ; see especially 471, *etiam sua Turnum Fata vocant' (though Turnus himself was killed), ibid. 438, * mox illos sua fata manent maiore sub hoste.' The conjecture of Heinsius fatove ferrove, adopted by almost all editors, distinguishes two possible kinds of death on land, a natural and a violent. But thisis unnecessary, and it is better to consider the passage as relating to a soldier's death on land only, for a man who falls in battle falls * et fato suo et ferro' (Lörs). Also there is more point in his preferring any death on land, however terrible, which still carries with it some faint hope of burial, to drowning (cp. F. iii. 598, quoted on 55), than in his contrasting with the latter, death by land either ordinary or violent. Special importance has in all ages been attached to burial; and death by drowning was regarded with peculiar horror, on account of the idea prevalent among both Greeks and Romans that such a death was the punishment for guilt. Thus Dido says to Aeneas, H. vii. 57 :— “Nec violasse fidem temptantibus aequora prodest : perfidiae poenas exigit ille locus.' (See Palmer's n.). II. 72. Three things constituted Roman citizenship, freedom (libertas), civic rights (civitas), and membership in a family (familia), Dig. iv. 5 1 I. The possession of these formed the citizen's status or legal personality, which was called * caput.' The status could be impaired (called demimutio capitis) in three ways: either (1) it could be entirely lost (* cum aliquis civitatem et libertatem amittit '), which was the case with persons condemned to work in the mines, or to contend with wild beasts in the arena; this was called ' maxima deminutio: ' or (2) a change of status could be undergone, involving loss of ' civitas' though not of * libertas,' in which case a man became “peregrinus,' as happened to persons outlawed ('aqua et igni interdicti') or banished as state prisoners to an island (' deportati in insulam'); this was called * minor' or * mcdim deminutio,' and constituted civic death, and so the * caput ' might be said * perire :' or (3) the “familia ' only might be affected, * civitas' and *libertas' being retained, as occurred in adoptions (Gaius, i. 162); this was called * minima deminutio,' and, unlike the other two, was not a state of punishment. In the present passage Ovid is speaking of himselfin general terms as exsul; he has been banished to a particular place of residence—Tomi. As a fact his banishment was the mildest possible (' relegatio '), which was an exile within prescribed limits, not in any way affecting the status, involving no * deminutio capitis,' but leaving the * patria potestas' and all other rights unimpaired (Dig. xlviii. 22. 7 ; Ovid, T. v. 2. 55, * vitamque dedisti, Nec mihi ius civis, nec mihi nomen abest ;' ib. 4. 21, ' Quod opes teneat patrias, quod nomina civis, Denique quod vivat, munus habere dei;' ib. I 1. 9 ff.; ii. 137; iv. 4. 46; Ibis 24). But in his bitterness he intentionally, here and in 4. 28, confoundsit with the severer form of exile * deportatio in insulam,' which entailed a “minor capitis deminutio;' though when speaking more exactly (v. I I. 21, * ipse relegati, non exsulis utitur in me Nomine') he denies the name of exile, i. e. exile involving * deminutio capitis.* (See Ortolan, Inst. Just. ii. I49, ff. ; Demangeat, Droit Romain, i. 31o, and for the places of banishment under the empire Mayor on Iuv. i. 73.

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »