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deminutam prodigii loco habitus est, donec in novos fetus





33. Feta,'having recently brought forth. Fetus' signifies 1. 'Pregnant.' 2. ·Having recently produced.' 3. ‘Fruitful.' ......'scandit fatalis machina muros = Feta armis'...

Virg. Aen. 2. 237.

nec tibi fetae,
More patrum, nivea implebunt mulctraria vaccae,
Sed tota in dulces consument ubera natos'

Virg. G. 3. 176. 3. 'Nos habeat regio nec pomo feta, nec uvis’

Ov. E. P. 1. 7, 13. 37. Cauda...blanditur, i.e. 'testifies her affection by wagging her tail.'

38. Fingit. This refers to the practice universal among quadrupeds of licking their young all over immediately after birth, which seems to have given rise to the notion that this operation had the effect of moulding them into their proper shape, and hence, too, arose the vulgar error, that the cubs of the bear were unshapen lumps of flesh until fashioned by the tongue of their dam 2. Compare Virg. Aen. 8. 630

'Fecerat et viridi fetam Mavortis in antro
Procubuisse lupam: geminos huic ubera circum
Ludere pendentes pueros, et lambere matrem
Impavidos: illam tereti cervice reflexam

Mulcere alternos et corpora fingere lingua.' 40. Nec is equivalent to 'et non.' 'Et aluntur ope lactis non promissi sibi.'

41-44. Illa, sc. 'lupa.' Having thus proposed to derive 'Lupercal' from 'lupa,' he next briefly intimates that the ‘Luperci' may have derived their name from the Aukulov õpos in Arcadia. This idea has been already illustrated in the Introduction to the preceding Extract.

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1 See also Varro L. L. 4. 8, S. Aurel. Victor de orig. gentis Romanae 20, Serv. Virg. Aen. 8. 90, Plutarch. Romul. 4 and Quaest. Roman., Augustin. De Civ. Dei 4. 11.

• Nec catulus partu quem edidit ursa recenti
Sed male viva caro est, lambendo mater in artus
Ducit, et in formam qualem cupit ipsa reducit'

Ov. Met. 15. 380.



FAS. IV. 809.


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OVID when describing the festival of the Palilia, celebrated on 21st April, which was believed to be the birthday of Rome, takes occasion to relate the circumstances attending the foundation of the city and the tragical end of Remus.

1. See Introduction to 14.
3, 4. Vtrique convenit, 'both agree.'

4. Ambigitur moenia ponat uter. Many MSS. (nomina.' This reading is supported by Ennius ap. Cic. Divin. I. 48

"Certabant urbem Romam Remoramne vocarent,' and by Livy 1. 6 'Quoniam gemini essent nec aetatis verecundia discrimen facere posset, ut dii, quorum tutelae ea loca essent, auguriis legerent qui nomen novae urbi daret, qui conditam imperio regeret, Palatium Romulus, Remus Aventinum ad inaugurandum templa capiunt.'

10. Arbitrium, pendet ab eo ius ponendae urbis quocumque loco vellet' (G).

12. Sacra Palis. See 24 and notes.

Inde, sc. from the festival of Pales—movetur,' i.e. 'incipitur.' See note on 14. 71.

13-18. The 'locus classicus' with regard to the ceremonies practised in founding cities, according to the Etrurian ritual, is to be found in Plutarch's Life of Romulus.

Romulus buried his brother Remus, and then built his city, having sent for persons from Hetruria, who (as it is usual in sacred mysteries) according to stated ceremonies and written rules, were to direct how everything was to be done. First, a circular ditch was dug about what is now called the

1 Compare Festus

Rituales nominantur Etruscorum libri, in quibus perscriptum est, quo ritu condantur urbes, arae, aedes sacrentur, qua sanctitate muri, quo iure portae, quomodo tribus, curiae, centuriae distribuantur, exercitus constituantur, ordinentur, ceteraque eiusmodi ad bellum, ad pacem pertinentia.'

Comitium, and the first-fruits of everything, that is reckoned either good by use or necessary by nature, were cast into it; and then each bringing a small quantity of the earth of the country whence he came, threw it in promiscuously! This ditch had the name of 'Mundus,' the same with that of the universe. In the next place, they marked out the city, like a circle round this centre; and the founder having fitted to a plough a brazen ploughshare, and yoked a bull and a cow, himself drew a deep furrow round the boundaries. The business of those that followed was to turn all they raised by the plough inward to the city, and not to allow any to remain outward. This line described the compass of the city; and between it and the walls is a space called by contraction Pomerium, as lying behind or beyond the wall. Where they designed to have a gate, they took the ploughshare out of the ground, and lifted up the plough, making a break for it. Hence they look upon the whole wall as sacred, except the gateways. If they considered the gates in the same light as the rest, it would be deemed unlawful either to receive the necessaries of life by them, or to carry out through them what is unclean 2'

13. Ad solidum. The meaning seems to be that the trench was sunk until they reached the rock, or at all events the hard subsoil, as distinguished from the soft mould near the surface. This interpretation is supported by Val. Max. 2. 4, 4

'Is, quod eo loci nullam aram viderat, desiderari credens, ut a se construeretur, aram empturus in Vrbem perrexit; relictis qui, fundamentorum constituendorum gratia, terram ad solidum foderent.'


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1 It will be observed that Plutarch differs here from Ovid.

Langhorne's Translation. Compare with the above, Varro L. L. 5. 32

Oppida condebant in Latio Etrusco ritu, ut mullas id est iunctis bobus, tauro et vacca interiore, aratro circumagebunt sulcum. Hoc faciebant religionis causa die auspicato ut fossa et muro essent muniti. Terram unde exsculpserant Fossam vocabant et introrsum factam Murum. Postea qui fiebat orbis, Vrbis principium; qui quod erat post murum Postmoerium dictum, eiusque ambitu auspicia urbana finiuntur.' Also Isidorus Orig. 15. 2

'Locus futurae civitatis sulco designabatur, id est, aratro.' Cato, 'Qui urbem,' inquit, 'novam condet, tauro et vacca aret, ubi araverit, murum faciat, ubi portam vult esse, aratrum sustollat et portet, et Portam vocet.'

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and Columell. 4. 30 Perticae.

panguntur eo usque dum ad solidum demittantur.'

The reading "solitum' is found in many MSS., but seems to be a corruption, or to have arisen from solidum' not being understood.

16. Fungitur igne. The proper meaning of 'fungi’ is 'to execute a task,' 'to discharge a duty;' now the use or duty of an altar is to receive the fire which consumes the offering, and hence the phrase "focus fungitur igne,''the altar does its duty by the fire.' Gierig and other editors prefer 'finditur,' 'the unseasoned altar is cracked by the fire.'

17. Stivam. The 'stiva' was the lever attached to the 'buris' or plough-handle, by means of which the course of the share was guided. See Virg. G. 1. 174

• Stivaque quae currus a tergo torqueat imos.' 25. Tonitru...laevo. Thunder on the left was considered by the Romans a happy omen. Thus Plin. H. N. 2. 54

'Laeva (sc. tonitrua) prospera existimantur quoniam laeva parte mundi ortus est.'

35. Rutro. The “rutrum' was an agricultural implement for turning up the earth, and is derived by Varro from ruere.' It would appear to have been a kind of spade, but no description of it is to be found in those authors who use the term.

Occupat. See note on 13. 33.

39. Exempla que fortia servat, sequitur exemplum virorum fortium in devorandis lacrimis et in dolore intus claudendo' G.

45. Arsurosque artus unxit. See Virgil Aen. 6. 214 sqq., where will be found a minute account of the ceremonies connected with the burning of a corpse. Tibull. 1. 3. 5, gives an accurate description of the manner in which the ashes of the dead were preserved.

50. Victorem, &c., 'destined to trample with victorious foot on all lands.'

53, 54. Rome is here tacitly compared to a heroine standing amid a crowd of inferior mortals, and the poet prays that she




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may overtop them all by the head and shoulders. Thus in Homer Il. 3. 227, Ajax

"Εξοχος 'Αργείων κεφαλήν τε και ευρέας ώμους.

O’ertops the Greeks by head and shoulders broad.'
So also Musaeus Virg. Ae. 6. 666

Quos circum fusos sic est affata Sibylla,
Musaeum ante omnes, medium nam plurima turba
Hunc habet, atque humeris exstantem suspicit altis.'



FAS. I. 335.


1-3. This Extract contains a history of the various offerings presented to different gods. The poet begins by giving the etymology of the words 'victima' and 'hostia,' deriving the former from victor' or victrix,' the latter from ‘hostis.'

3. Ante, 'in days of yore.'

4. He describes the 'mola salsa,' the most simple of all offerings, composed of meal and salt. "Mica' is a glittering particle, and is frequently used absolutely without the addition of 'salis,' e. g. Hor. Od. 3. 23, 19

Mollivit aversos Penates=Farre pio et saliente mica,' and Tibull. 3. 4, 10

'Farre pio placant et saliente mica,' where the epithet 'saliens' represents the leaping of the salt as it crackles in the fire.

5. Myrrha, derived from púpelv, “to drop,' is always represented by the ancients as a gum which exsuded in tears from the bark of an Arabian shrub. That which dropped spontaneously before an incision was made was called otaktn, and was considered the most valuable. Pliny, H. N. 12. 15 and 16, gives a full description of myrrh and of the plant which yields it, but it has as yet eluded the search of modern botanists.

7. Tura, ‘Tus' or 'Thus,' the deßavoròs of the Greeks, is generally believed to be the same with the 'Gum Olibanum' of commerce, still extensively employed in the services of the Roman Catholic church.

Euphrates. Many of the costly productions of the East were sent down the Euphrates, and from thence transported by the Persian and Arabian gulphs to Alexandria, the great emporium of oriental commerce at this period.



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