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Varius; through their influence he was admitted (39 B.C.) to the intimacy and friendship of Maecenas, the confidential adviser of Octavian, and a generous patron of literature. About six years later (probably 33 в.c.), he received from Maecenas the Sabine Farm, situated some thirty iles to the northeast of Rome, in the valley of the Digentia, a small stream flowing into the Anio. This estate was not merely adequate for his support, enabling him to devote his entire energy to study and poetry, but was an unfailing source of happiness as well; Horace never wearies of singing its praises.
5. Horace's Other Friendships. Horace's friendship with Maecenas, together with his own admirable social qualities and poetic gifts, won him an easy entrance into the best Roman society. His Odes bear eloquent testimony to his friendship with nearly all the eminent Romans of his time. Among these were: Agrippa, Octavian's trusted general, and later his son-in-law; Messalla, the friend of Horace's Athenian student days, and later one of the foremost orators of the age; Pollio, distinguished alike in the fields of letters, oratory, and arms. The poets Virgil and Varius have already been mentioned. Other literary friends were: Quintilius Varus, Valgius, Plotius, Aristius Fuscus, and Tibullus.
6. Relations with Augustus. With the Emperor, Horace's relations were intimate and cordial. Though he had fought with conviction under Brutus and Cassius at Philippi, yet he possessed too much sense and patriotism to be capable of ignoring the splendid promises of stability and good government held out by the new régime inaugurated by Augustus. In sincere and loyal devotion to his sovereign, he not merely accepted the new order, but lent the best efforts of his verse to glorifying and strengthening it.
In the life of Horace attributed to Suetonius, we learn that Augustus offered the poet the position of private secretary. Horace, with dignified independence, declined the offer, a step that seems to have made no difference, however, in the cordial friendship with which Augustus continued to honor him.
He remained true to the Muse till his death, November 27, 8 B.C., a few days before the completion of his fiftyseventh year, and but a few weeks after the death of his patron and friend, Maecenas.
7. The Satires. - Horace's first published work was Book I. of the Satires, which appeared in 35 B.C. Five years later, Book II. was published. Though conventionally called 'Satires,' and alluded to by Horace himself as satirae, these were entitled by him Sermones, as being talks, so to speak, couched in the familiar language of everyday life. They represent a type of literature whose early beginnings are obscure, but which is clearly an indigenous Roman product and not an imitation of Greek models, as is the case with almost every other type of Latin poetry. Horace was not the first representative of this kind of writing among the Romans. Ennius, Lucilius, and Varro had been his predecessors in the same field. Of these three, Lucilius beyond question exercised the greatest influence upon the poet. In Horace's hands, satire consists in the main of urbane comment upon the vices and foibles of the day, coupled with amusing incidents of personal experience and good-natured raillery at the defects of the prevailing philosophical systems, of which he was always an earnest and intelligent student. Besides this we have several pieces dealing directly with
the scope and function of satire as a species of literary
8. The Epodes. These were published in 29 B.C. and mark the transition from the Satires to the Odes. They resemble the Satires in their frequent polemic character, the Odes in the lyric form in which they are cast. Though published after the two books of the Satires, several of them apparently represent the earliest of Horace's efforts in verse that have been preserved.
9. The Odes and Carmen Saeculare. Books I.-III. of the Odes were published in 23 B.C., when Horace was forty-two years old. Many of them had unquestionably been written. several years before, some apparently as early as 32 B.C. These Odes at once raised Horace to the front rank of Roman poets, and assured his permanent fame. Six years later (17 B.C.), he was the natural choice of Augustus for the composition of the Carmen Saeculare to be sung at the saecular celebration held in that year. In 13 B.C. appeared Book IV. of the Odes. Though containing some of the poet's best work, this last book nevertheless bears certain traces of perfunctoriness. The Suetonian life of Horace records that it was written at the express request of the Emperor, a statement borne out by the lack of spontaneity characteristic of some of the poems.
10. The Epistles and Ars Poetica. There are two books of Epistles. Book I. was published in 20 B.C., Book II. probably in 14 B.C. Of the epistles contained in Book I., some are genuine letters such as friend might write to friend; others are simply disquisitions in verse form on questions of life, letters, or philosophy. Book II. consists of but two epistles, one to Julius Florus, the other to Augustus. Both these pieces deal with questions of literary criticism. and poetic composition.
The Ars Poetica, as it is conventionally designated, is an essay on the art of poetic composition - chiefly the drama. It is addressed to a certain Piso and his two sons, and Horace probably entitled it simply Epistula ad Pisones. The date of this composition is uncertain; but as it is one of the ripest, so it is probably one of the latest, if not the very latest, of all his extant writings. It is often printed as the third epistle of Book II.
11. Chronological Table of Horace's Works:
Satires, Book I.
The Odes, Books I.-III.
MANUSCRIPTS, SCHOLIA, EDITIONS.
12. Manuscripts. - There are some two hundred and fifty manuscripts of Horace's works. No one of these is older than the eighth century, and most belong to the eleventh century and later. Among the most important manuscripts may be mentioned: —
V. Blandinius Vetustissimus.
This manuscript, which once belonged to the Abbaye de St. Pierre on Mont Blandin (the modern Blankenberg), is now lost. It was destroyed by fire, together with the abbey, in 1566. But Cruquius (Jacques de Crusque), professor at Bruges, had previously examined it with care, and cites its readings with great
MANUSCRIPTS, SCHOLIA, EDITIONS.
frequency in his edition of 1577. Some critics have challenged the very existence of this manuscript, and have charged that Cruquius's citations of its alleged readings are forgeries. But while Cruquius is often guilty of carelessness and gross blunders, it is improbable that he was guilty of dishonesty, and most Horatian critics to-day recognize that I was a real manuscript, and that its readings as noted by Cruquius are of value.
B. Bernensis, 363, in the municipal library at Berne, Switzerland. This belongs to the ninth century, and has recently been published in an admirable photographic facsimile.
R. Sueco-Vaticanus, No. 1703, formerly the property of Queen Christina of Sweden, and now in the Vatican. This was written in the eighth century and, according to Keller, is the oldest of our extant manuscripts of Horace.
Keller attaches the greatest weight to these last two manuscripts, B and R, and holds that in nine cases out of ten their agreement points to the reading of the archetype of all our extant manuscripts.
No convincing classification of Horatian manuscripts has yet been made, and the great difficulties of the problem render extremely doubtful the eventual success of any such attempt.
13. Scholia. - Scholia are explanatory notes on the ancient writers. Sometimes these form separate works of elaborate scope; at other times they consist simply of additions made by copyists to the manuscripts themselves. Our Horatian scholia comprise the following:
PORPHYRIO, a scholiast who lived probably in the early part of the third century A.D. and has left us an extensive commentary on all of Horace's writings.
PSEUDO-ACRON. This collection bears the name of Hele