Page images

iii. In Cic. de Inv. 2. 2, we have,

'Ex variis ingeniis excellentissima quaeque libavimus.'

iv. In Lucret. 5. 261

'Ergo terra tibi libatur, et aucta recrescit.'

and in Prop. 4. 5, 57

'Dum vernat sanguis, dum rugis integer annus,
Vtere, ne quid cras libet ab ores dies.'

3. Reddita...omnis provincia. Livy Epit. 134. 'Caesar, rebus compositis et omnibus provinciis in certam formam redactis, Augustus quoque cognominatus est.'

All historians agree that the title of 'Augustus' was bestowed on Octavianus in the year 27 B.C., upon the motion of Lucius Munatius Plancus, but there are variations with regard to the precise day. Ovid here fixes upon the 15th of January, the Fasti Verrian on the 16th, and Censorinus on the 17th. These may be easily reconciled, by supposing that the proposal was made upon the first of these days, but that all the formalities were not completed till the last.

4. Tuus...avus. Ovid is addressing Germanicus. See note on 9. 10. p. 154.

5. Generosa atria, 'noble-high-born halls.'

Ceras. In allusion to the waxen figures of those who had enjoyed a curule office, which were treasured by their descendants, and ranged, with the names attached, in wooden cases round the walls of the atrium,' the principal apartment of a Roman mansion.

6. Contigerunt. See Manual of Latin Prosody, p. 102. 7. Africa. This may refer either to Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus the elder, who overthrew Hannibal at Zama, 202 B.C., and thus terminated the second Punic War, or to his grandson by adoption, Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus, who captured and destroyed Carthage, 146 B.C.

Isauras. Publius Servilius Vatia Isauricus, who was Consul 79 B.C., and in 77 B.C. was sent against the pirates of Cilicia. He reduced the Isauri, a mountain tribe who dwelt in the fastnesses of Taurus between Cilicia and Lycaonia, and, on his return to Rome, was honoured with a triumph and the title of 'Isauricus.'

8. Cretum. Q. Caecilius Metellus Creticus was Consul 69 B.C., and the following year ravaged Crete with fire and sword, it being suspected that the Cretans were disposed to favour Mithridates.

9. Numidae. Q. Caecilius Metellus Numidicus was Consul 109 B.C., and prosecuted the war against Jugurtha during that and the following year. In 107 B.C. he was superseded by Marius, to whom fell the glory of carrying Jugurtha captive to Rome, 106 B.C.

Messana. No Roman general ever received the title 'Messanicus,' but the person alluded to here in Appius Claudius Caudex, who was Consul 264 B.C., and began the first Punic War by marching to the relief of the Mamertines of Messana, who were besieged by Hiero and the Carthaginians.

10. Numantina. The younger Scipio Africanus, who, as we observed in the introduction, received the additional title of Numantinus upon the reduction of Numantia 133 B.C.

11. Drusus Claudius Nero, brother of the Emperor Tiberius, (see p. 153,) who was killed, 9 B.C., by a fall from his horse, in Germany, having previously received the title 'Germanicus,' on account of his victories in that country. The poem entitled 'Consolatio ad Liviam,' addressed to the mother of Drusus upon his death, has been attributed to Ovid. See preliminary remarks.

15. Ex uno quidam, &c., 'certain persons have acquired renown by vanquishing a single adversary.’

Torquis ademptae. The cognomen of 'Torquatus,' which belonged to one of the families of the 'Gens Manlia,' is said to have been thus acquired. Twenty-eight years after the capture of Rome by the Gauls, an army of these barbarians advanced as far as the third milestone from the city, and encamped on the right bank of the Anio. T. Quinctius Pennus, who had been chosen dictator, went forth with a great host to meet the enemy. The rest of the narrative should be read in the picturesque language of Livy, 7.9 and 10. A gigantic Gaul having challenged the Roman army, T. Manlius was allowed to accept the challenge, slew the Gaul and spoiled him of the 'torques' or necklace, the characteristic ornament of a Gaulish warrior.

16. Corvi auxiliaris. A similar tale was attached to the cognomen 'Corvinus,' which belonged to one of the families of the 'Gens Valeria.' Thirteen years after the event described in the last note, a band of Gauls made their way into the Pomptine territory. M. Valerius, a military tribune, having accepted the challenge of a Gaul to single combat, was assisted in the encounter by a raven, ('corvus,') which alighted on his helmet and attacked his adversary with beak and claw.

17. Magne. Pompey, upon his return to Rome after the destruction of the Marian party in Sicily and Africa, was saluted by Sulla with this title. Although only a knight and a private individual, never having held any of the great offices of state, he was allowed a triumph, being the first Roman to whom such a distinction had been granted in like circumstances.

18. Qui te vicit. Julius Caesar at the battle of Pharsalia, 48 B.C.

20. Meritis Maxima dicta.

(304 B.C.)

Compare Livy 9. 46

'Q. Fabius et P. Decius censores facti, et Fabius simul concordiae causa, simul ne humillimorum in manu comitia essent, omnem forensem turbam excretam in quatuor tribus coniecit, urbanasque eas appellavit; adeoque eam rem acceptam gratis animis ferunt, ut Maximi cognomen, quod tot victoriis non pepererat, hac ordinum temperatione pareret.'

17, 18, 20. Observe the play upon the words magne, maior, maximus, in these three lines.

22. Hic. Augustus.

23-27. A dissertation on the meaning and derivation of the word augustus, which he deduces from 'augeo.' Compare Suet. Octav. 7 'Postea Caesaris et deinde Augusti cognomen assumpsit: alterum testamento maioris avunculi; alterum Munatii Planci sententia: quum, quibusdam censentibus, Romulum appellari oportere, quasi et ipsum conditorem urbis, praevaluisset, ut Augustus potius vocaretur, non tantum novo, sed etiam ampliore cognomine. [quod loca quoque religiosa, et in quibus augurato quid consecratur, augusta dicantur, ab auctu, vel ab avium gestu, gustuve, sicut etiam Ennius docet, scribens:

Augusto augurio postquam inclyta condita Roma est1.'] So also Dion Cassius 53. 16 πάντα γὰρ τὰ ἐντιμότατα καὶ τὰ ἱερώτατα αὔγουστα προσαγορεύεται.

25. Huius et, &c., i. e. the word 'augurium' is derived from the same root with ‘augustus'—both being derived from 'augeo.' This etymology of 'augurium,' however, is by no means satisfactory. Augur' is in all probability connected with 'avis.'

29. Cognominis heres. Tiberius.

I The words within brackets are considered by all good editors to be an interpolation.




TR. I. iii.

OVID having received from the Emperor an order to quit the city and take up his residence at Tomi, on the shores of the Euxine, depicts in this poem the misery he endured in tearing himself from Rome. With regard to his banishment and the causes, see life of Ovid in the Introduction.

5. Lux aderat. Three MSS. have 'nox aderat,' which is unnecessary. It appears from the whole of this elegy that Ovid set out from Rome at daybreak, (see particularly lines 71, 72,) and he would appear to be describing, although not in regular order, the events which took place during the last day spent by him in the city and during the night, towards the close of which he actually commenced his journey.

6. Finibus extremae Ausoniae, i. e. 'extremis finibus Ausoniae.' With regard to 'Ausonia,' see note, p. 304.

14. Convaluere, 'recovered their vigour.'

16. Qui modo, &c. 'who from many were now reduced to one or two.' Compare Trist.

'Vix duo tresve mihi de tot superestis, amici,
Cetera fortunae, non mea turba fuit,'

and Ep. ex. P. 2. 3, 29, addressed to Maximus,

'Cumque alii nolint etiam me nosse fateri,
Vix duo proiecto tresve tulistis opem;
Quorum tu princeps'....

18. Indignas...genas, 'her cheeks, which deserved not to be disfigured with marks of woe.'


19. Procul, at a distance;' diversa, 'in an opposite direction from that in which I was about to journey.'

26. Haec facies, &c. Compare Cic. in Verr. Act.


[ocr errors]

2. Lib.

Quem concursum in oppido factum putatis? quem clamorem? quem porro fletum mulierum? qui viderent, equum Troianum introductum urbem captam esse dicerent.'

29. Ab hac, i. e. 'Postquam hanc aspexi.' The variations in the MSS. probably arose from the expression not being understood.

30. Lari, 'to my home.'

37. Caelesti viro. Augustus. Error. See Life of Ovid. 44. The extinction of the fire in the 'atrium' always indicated the desertion of a dwelling.

45. Adversos, will signify 'the Penates, whose statues stood in front of her as she knelt before the hearth.' Heinsius conjectured 'aversos,' 'turned away in wrath,' which is supported by Hor. Od. 3. 23, 19

'Mollivit aversos Penates

Farre pio, et saliente mica.'

48. Axe. Observe the different modifications in the meaning of the word 'axis.'

i. 'The axle of a wheel,' and hence, by synecdoche, ‘a car' or 'chariot.'

ii. The imaginary axle on which the universe appears to revolve.'

iii. The extremity of this axle, 'the poles,' and especially 'the north pole.'

iv. Any quarter of the heavens, 'the heavens' in general, 'the canopy of heaven,' 'the open air.'

v. 'A climate' or 'region.'

i. 'Post valido nitens sub pondere faginus axis Instrepat, et iunctos temo trahat aereus orbes'

Virg. G. 3. 172.

'Quod sit avus, radiis frontem vallatus acutis,
Purpureo tepidum qui movet axe diem'

Ov. Her. 4. 159.

ii. 'Sive enim ipse mundus deus est, quid potest esse minus quietum, quam nullo puncto temporis intermisso versari circum axem caeli admirabili celeritate?' Cic. N. D. 1. 20.

'Ter sine perpetuo caelum versetur in axe'

Ov. Fast. 4. 179.

iii. 'Te geminum Titan procedere vidit in axem’
Lucan 7. 422.

'Quin etiam caeli regionem in cortice signant
Vt, quo quaeque modo steterit, qua parte calores
Austrinos tulerit, quae terga obverterit axi,

.Virg. G. 2. 269.

« PreviousContinue »