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Cat. with LXI. 20 LXIV. 88

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cf. Fragment. with LXIV. 398 sqq. cf. Epy.

171 sqq.

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Epy. 517

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cf. Ol. II. ad fin. with LXVIII B.79 sq. cf. Ol. XI. 86

Ol. x. 56

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cf. Fragment.1

with LXXIII. 5 cf. Fragment.1

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with XXII. 18 sq. cf. Frag. 1029 with XIV. 21

cf. I. A. 700

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J Med. 1343
Bac. 988

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149 sq.

Frag Aeol
Med. 476

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153

Tro. 450

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2 We may here add, with XXVII. cf. DIPHILUS Frag. (Mein. IV. 402); with XXXIX. 16 cf. MENAND. (IV. 342); with L. 21 cf. ANTIMACHUS, 588.

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178

Med. 502

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257

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On all these passages it is to be remarked, in the words of Ellis, 'that Catullus, even when he trans

lates most literally, transfuses his own nature into the words, and remains as Italian as before.'

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C

QUAESTIO II.

CATULLUS' POSITION IN LATIN

LITERATURE.

'Lepidum novum libellum.'

EARLIER Roman poetry, as we have seen, failed for the most part for lack of form. It was also confined in subject, and attempted only the epos, the drama, satire, and (in a limited sense) the epigram. In the age of Catullus, better directed study resulted in a truer and larger sense of the various forms of literary composition; and the lyric, the idyll, and the elegy were added to Roman literature. This new birth of Latin poetry is represented to us by Catullus alone. The works of all the other writers of his time have been lost; and the same irony of fate, which gave us Hesiod in place of Archilochus and the Greek lyrists, has preserved Cicero's translation of Aratus, instead of the works of Bibaculus and Calvus. Catullus was, however, as far as we can learn, far greater than the rest of his contemporaries; and should be regarded, therefore, as the first in time, as well as in genius, of Roman lyric, elegiac, idyllic, and epigrammatic poets.

That he should have shown much literary resemblance to the more ancient Roman verse-writers is, therefore, as unlikely in itself as it is disproved by his writings. But he shared their native boldness and independence of spirit; and his wide, reading did not leave him ignorant of what they had done. With LXIV. 163 compare PACUVIUS' Niptra; with LXIV. 191 compare PACUVIUS Il. fr. ix.; with LXIV. 291 compare Ennius, quoted by Gellius, N. A. xiii. xx. 13.

With PLAUTUS and TERENCE Catullus had more in common. Like them (but without their archaic colour) he employed the idiom of ordinary life, which, with but little change, he elevated into the language of poetry. Parallelisms are—

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LUCRETIUS, between whom and Catullus there are parallelisms which cannot have been accidental, died less than a year before the younger poet, and his poem

172 (spout order).

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