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Bis tinctam. A garment which had been twice dyed purple, and had therefore drunk as much of the precious liquor as the wool was capable of absorbing, was distinguished by the ephithet 'dibaphus' (dißapos). Thus Pliny H. N. 9. 39' Dibapha tunc (i. e. in the age of Cicero) dicebatur quae bis tincta esset, veluti magnifico impendio, qualiter nunc omnes pene commodiores purpurae tinguntur.' The Roman magistrates and chief priests wore a robe fringed with purple, 'toga praetexta,' and hence 'dibaphus' is used by Cicero for a magistracy or priesthood. Thus Ep. Fam. 2. 16 'Curtius noster dibaphum cogitat,' i. e. 'is aiming at a magistracy;' and again, Ep. Att. 2. 9 'Vatinii strumam sacerdotii dißápo vestiant.'
26. Suos...sonos, 'its own proper tones,' such as it yields in the hands of a skilful artist.
27. Icta...pollice. The cords of the lyre were swept either with the fingers, or with a pointed instrument, made of ivory or metal, shaped like a finger, and called 'plectrum' (Tуnκтρоv) or 'pecten. Virg. Ae. 6. 645
'Nec non Threicius longa cum veste sacerdos,
Hor. Od. 2. 13, 26
'Et te sonantem plenius aureo, Alcaee, plectro'....
27-28. The order of construction is 'Veluti olor traiectus canentia tempora dura penna cantat flebilibus numeris,' where 'canentia tempora' are the snowy temples, or head of the swan, 'penna,' the arrow with which it is pierced.
28. Cantat olor. The strange notion, universally current among the Greeks and Romans, that the swan poured forth melodious strains when in the agonies of death, seems to have arisen from the circumstance that the Egyptians used the figure of this bird as a hieroglyphic for a musical old man, Γέροντα μουσικὸν βουλόμενοι σημῇναι, κύκνον ζωγραφοῦσιν· οὗτος γὰρ ἡδύτατον μέλος ᾄδει γηράσκων 1. Hence it was accounted sacred to Apollo, and poets are figuratively addressed as swans. Hor. Od. 4. 2, 25
'Multa Dircaeum levat aura cycnum.'
1 So says Horapollo, 2. 39. See Sir Thomas Browne upon Vulgar Errors, Book 3. c. 27.
Cicero thus reports the expressions of Socrates on this subject
Itaque commemorat, ut cycni, qui non sine causa Apollini dicati sint, sed quod ab eo divinationem habere videantur, qua providentes quid in morte boni sit, cum cantu et voluptate moriantur, sic omnibus bonis et doctis esse faciendum' Tuscul. Disp. 1. 30.
30. Spargitur, &c. Arion, by plunging suddenly into the sea, splashes up the water upon the ship.
34. Cantat. If we understand 'carmen' after 'cantat,' then 'pretium' will be in opposition with 'carmen.'
HERCVLES ET OMPHALE.
FAS. II. 305.
THE following pretty description belongs to one of the numerous adventures of Hercules. The hero, after the completion of his twelve labours, became involved in a quarrel with Eurytus, lord of Oechalia, whose son Iphitos he slew in a moment of phrenzy, although the youth was at the time his guest. The rites necessary to wash away the stain of blood were performed, but the wrath of heaven was not yet appeased, for the most sacred ties had been violated, and the murderer was smitten with a sore disease. The Pythia announced that no release would be granted, unless he were sold and remained in slavery three years. The sum of money received was to be given to Eurytus as the price of blood. Accordingly he was made over by Hermes to Omphale, daughter of Iardanus, queen of the Lydians'.
1. Dominae is used here in the strict sense. was the slave of Omphale.
Iuvenis. It is well known that this term was applied to all who were in the vigour of manhood, to all who were fit for military service.
1 Apollodor. 2. 6, 1. We have already stated that this fable probably arose from Hercules being confounded with the Lydian hero Sandon. See p. 173. Those who wish to see a discussion upon this topic, may consult Muller's Dorians, Vol. I. p. 456, Engl. Trans., and his essay in the Rheinisches Museum, Vol. 3. p. 22.
Tirynthius. See note, p. 175.
2. Faunus. See introduction to 15. The Italian god, it will be observed, is here taking a ramble in Asia.
3. Montanaque numina, &c. 'ye nymphs of the hills.' See note, p. 237.
5. Odoratis, &c. 'with her perfumed locks flowing over the shoulders.'
6. Moeonis, the Lydian queen.' Moeonia was the original name of Lydia. See note on 3. 9, p. 119.
Aurato... sinu, 'with gold-embroidered robe.' The 'sinus' was properly the large plait or fold formed by the 'toga' or 'palla' across the breast, and on the skilful arrangement of this the graceful effect of the drapery chiefly depended.
7. Rapidos soles. The epithet 'rapidus' is appropriately applied to a swift-flashing flame, or the swift-darting rays of the sun.
'Aestuat ut clausis rapidus fornacibus ignis' Virg. G. 4. 63. 'Ne tenues pluviae rapidive potentia solis,' &c. Ibid. 1. 92. Umbraculum will signify anything that affords shade, here it is a 'parasol,' and so Ov. A. A. 2. 209
'Ipse tene distenta suis umbracula virgis.'
In Tibull. 2. 5, 97, it means a temporary tent, in Virg. E. 9. 42, the shadowy umbrage of the vines,
.'hic candida populus antro
Imminet et lentae texunt umbracula vites,'
and in Cicero, 'a school of philosophy,' an application of the term derived from groves of Academe and other shady retreats where the Athenian sages were wont to discourse to their disciples. Thus De Legg. 3. 6
'Post a Theophrasto Phalereus ille Demetrius mirabiliter doctrinam et umbraculis eruditorum, otioque, non modo in solem atque pulverem, sed in ipsum discrimen aciemque produxit,' and again, Brut. g. e. Theophrasti doctissimi hominis umbraculis.'
9. Tmoli vineta. Tmolus was the name of a lofty group of hills in the centre of Lydia, from which descend the headwaters of the Pactolus and the Caystrus. Its slopes were celebrated for the wine which they yielded, and hence the district is here termed 'nemus Bacchi.' Compare Ov. Met. 6. 15
'Deseruere sui Nymphae vineta Timoli,'
and Virg. G. 2. 97
'Sunt et Amineae vites, firmissima vina,
Tmolius assurgit quibus, et rex ipse Phanaeus.' The saffron also of this region was celebrated, Virg. G. 1. 56 ...Nonne vides, croceos ut Tmolus odores,
India mittit ebur, molles sua tura Sabaei.'
II. Laqueata, 'fretted.' 'Laquear' and 'lacunar' are the two words employed to denote 'a fretted roof.' The former, derived from 'laqueus,' denotes tracery-work in the form of knots or nooses; the latter, from 'lacus,' the ornamented hollows or cavities which still may be seen in the ceilings of some ancient buildings. Gothic architecture affords examples of every variety of both kinds of ornaments.
Laqueataque. Observe that 'que' is here out of its proper place; a prose writer would have said, 'laqueata tophis vivoque pumice.'
Tophis...pumice. The Romans gave the name of 'tophus' (or 'tofus') to a rough, coarse-grained stone of volcanic origin, found in great quantities in the neighbourhood of Rome, and now called 'tufo.' 'Scaber' is the distinctive epithet applied by Virgil, to which Pliny adds 'friabilis.' 'Pumex' is another volcanic product, but of a much finer texture; it has always been extensively used in the arts for smoothing and polishing rough surfaces. In the poets both these words are equivalent to 'native' or 'living rock.' Thus in the exquisite lines of Juvenal on the marble decorated fountain of Egeria,
'In vallem Egeriae descendimus, et speluncas
Numen aquae, viridi si margine clauderet undas
and Ov. Met. 3. 175
S. 3. 17.
'Caius in extremo antrum est nemorale recessu,
Et levibus tophis nativum duxerat arcum.'
12. Garrulus, 'babbling.' So Horace of the Bandusian fount,
'Fies nobilium tu quoque fontium,
Lymphae desiliunt tuae.'
15. Gaetulo murice. See note, p. 304.
17. Vincla relaxat. He bursts the strings by which the tunic was drawn tight at the wrist.
22. The order of the words is, 'Et tela minora condita in sua pharetra;' the arrows are called 'tela minora,' lesser weapons, in comparison with the heavy club; sua pharetra,' the quiver which belonged to them.
23. Sic. In this guise, Hercules attired in the robes of Omphale-Omphale equipped with the accoutrements of the
FAS. II. 193.
THE best introduction to this Extract-which contains the famous legend of the destruction of the Fabian clan, all, save one--will be the narative of Livy 2. 48, 49.
1. Idibus. On the Ides of February the festival of Faunus was celebrated. See Introduction to 15.
2. Insula. The 'Insula Tiberina,' which was situated near the point where the Capitoline hill abuts upon the river, is said not to have existed until after the expulsion of the Tarquins, and to have been formed in the following manner: Livy. 2. 5
Ager Tarquiniorum, qui inter urbem ac Tiberim fuit, consecratus Marti Martius deinde Campus fuit. Forte ibi tum seges farris dicitur fuisse matura_messi, quem campi fructum quia religiosum erat consumere, desectam cum stramento segetem magna vis hominum simul immissa corbibus fudere in Tiberim tenui fluentem aqua, ut mediis caloribus solet; ita in vadis haesitantis frumenti acervos sedisse illitos limo; insulam inde paulatim, et aliis, quae fert temere flumen, eodem invectis, factam; postea credo additas moles, manuque adiutum, ut tam eminens area firmaque templis quoque ac porticibus sustinendis esset.'
This island contained temples of Faunus, Aesculapius, and Jupiter, the shrines of the two last being contiguous, thus Ov. Fast. 1. 291