Billeder på siden

Aut cum sole novo terras inrorat Eous.
Nocte leves melius stipulae, nocte arida prata
Tondentur; noctes lentus non deficit humor.
Et quidam seros hiberni ad luminis ignis
Pervigilat, ferroque faces inspicat acuto;
Interea longum cantu solata laborem
Arguto coniunx percurrit pectine telas,
Aut dulcis musti Volcano decoquit humorem
Et foliis undam trepidi despumat aeni.
At rubicunda Ceres medio succiditur aestu,
rere' than to those where it denotes com-
pliance with the will of another.

288.] Wakefield supposes Virgil to have imitated Lucr. 5. 281,"aetherius Sol Inrigat assidue caelum candore recenti." But the primary reference of 'inrorat' evidently is to literal dew, and it seems hardly worth while to suppose a secondary one to the sprinkling of the earth with sunlight. Heyne comp. 3. 305, "extremoque inrorat Aquarius anno.'

[ocr errors]

289.] Stipulae:' see on v. 85. The cutting of the stubble took place in August, within a month after the reaping. 'Leves' and 'arida' seem both to be emphatic, as suggesting what the husbandman has to obviate. 'Arida prata,' opposed to those which could be irrigated. Voss.

290.] Lentus' expresses the effect of the moisture on the grass rather than the nature of the moisture itself. 'Noctes deficit,' the ore ordinary construction referred to on v. 148. "Hominem totum magis ac magis undique sensus Deficit,' Lucr. 3. 546.

291.] 'Quidam,' like "est qui," Hor. 2 Ep. 2. 182, Pers. 1. 76, as if Virgil knew the man, but did not choose to name him. 'Luminis' is generally taken of lamp or torch-light. Keightley refers it to fire-light, comparing 2. 432., A. 7. 13, where however there is the same doubt. It would be possible also to refer it to the late dawn of a winter sun (lumine quarto,' A. 6. 356), so that the sense should be one man sits through a long winter's night,' though the parallel in A. 7 1. c. would point rather to either of the other interpretations.

[ocr errors]

292.] Inspicat,' makes into the form of an ear of corn, the end of the wood being cut into a point and split into various parts. Forb. comp. Sen. Med. 111, "Multifidam iam tempus erat succendere pinum." This is probably the same as "incide faces," E. 8. 29, though a distinction has been attempted between them by Ulitius on Gratius' Cynegetica, v. 484, who supposes incidere' to refer to the cutting of pieces of wood to be

[ocr errors]



bound together into brands (Dict. A. 'fax'). 293.]Solatus' might be taken strictly, as if Virgil, though meaning of course that singing and weaving went on together, chose to take a point from which the former might be regarded as past, the latter as beginning or continuing, but such an explanation would not apply to A. 5. 708, "Isque his Aenean solatus vocibus infit," so that we must say that the past participle is used with a present force. See Madvig, § 431. 6. The domestic picture has the effect, which doubtless was one of the objects of the composition of the Georgics, of placing the life of a small country proprietor in an attractive light.

[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors]

295.] Must' was boiled down to carenum,' defrutum' (4. 269), or 'sapa,' on a night when there was no moon (Dict. A. 'vinum'). 'Volcanus,' as Cerda remarks, is used elsewhere of a large fire, such as would be required for boiling 'must' (Col. 12. 19; so G. 4. 269, 'igni multo '). The hypermeter here seems to be a fair instance of a metrical anomaly introduced for descriptive effect. See on v. 482.

296.] Foliis,' vine leaves (Pliny 14. 9), as wood was apt to give a smoky taste to the liquor. Undam aeni' like "undantis aeni," A. 7. 463. Col. 12. 20 says that the vessel should be of lead, as brass was liable to rust in boiling. For 'trepidi' many MSS. give 'tepidi,' which could scarcely be used of boiling liquid.

297-310.] Summer is the time for reaping and threshing. Winter is the husbandman's season for festivity; but he still has work, stripping acorns and berries, snaring and killing game.'

Et medio tostas aestu terit area fruges.
Nudus ara, sere nudus; hiemps ignava colono.
Frigoribus parto agricolae plerumque fruuntur,
Mutuaque inter se laeti convivia curant;
Invitat genialis hiemps curasque resolvit :
Ceu pressae cum iam portum tetigere carinae,
Puppibus et laeti nautae inposuere coronas.


Sed tamen et quernas glandes tum stringere tempus 305 Et lauri bacas oleamque cruentaque myrta;

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]



*Αρχεσθαι δ ̓ ἀμῶντας ἐγειρομένω κορυΚαὶ λήγειν εὕδοντος· ἐλινῦσαι δὲ τὸ καῦμα.

'Aestu' then had better be taken of summer as the hot season, as 66 frigoribus mediis," E. 10. 65, means midwinter. Wagn. objects that the information in that case would be so obvious as to be needless, but Virgil is speaking of the operations proper to the various seasons, as the next lines show, as well as of the times when they should be performed, and 'hiberni,' v. 291, prepares us for the mention of summer. Wagn.'s own view, that 'medio aestu' means generally a summer's day as contrasted with a winter's night, without any special reference to noon, makes 'medio' a worse than useless epithet. 'Succiditur' seems not to specify anything about the manner of cutting, merely imply. ing that the thing is severed from below. "Flos succisus aratro," A. 9. 435.

298.] 'Tostas' not to be joined with


[ocr errors][merged small]
[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

302.] Winter is the entertainer, calling out man's happier self, and unbinding his load of care." So December is called by Ov. F. 3. 58, 'geniis acceptus.' The

[ocr errors]

genius' seems to be an impersonation and half deification of the happy and impulsive part of man, so that an offering to it would imply that the day was to be spent in enjoyment. Hor. 3 Od. 17. 14, 2 Ep. 1. 144, A. P. 209. We have here another domestic picture: see on v. 291 above.

303.] Winter is to them what port is to the sailor, the jovial end of a weary time.' Pressae,' heavy laden: virtually equivalent to Heinsius' conjecture, 'fessae,' and doubtless intended to convey the notion that the ship feels the relief. Heyne. Tibull. 1. 3. 40, "Presserat externa navita merce ratem."

304.] A. 4. 418., Comp. Prop. 4. 24. 15, "Ecce coronatae portum tetigere carinae," probably an imitation of this passage.

305.] Glandes stringere,' E. 10. 20 note. Stringere' like "stringunt frondes," E. 9. 61 note, where Cato is quoted, using it of the olive. 'Quernas' because 'glans' was used of other fruits than acorns. "Glandis appellatione omnis fructus continetur, ut Iavolenus ait," Gaius, Dig. 50. 16. 236.

306.] Myrtle berries were used for mixing with wine, which was called 'murteus or 'myrtites,' and used medicinally for pains in the stomach. (Cato 125 (126). Col. 12. 38.) Cruenta,' from their juice. Voss thinks the red wild myrtle is spoken of as distinguished from the black or white : but the agricultural writers do not countenance this. Forb.

Tum gruibus pedicas et retia ponere cervis,
Auritosque sequi lepores; tum figere dammas,
Stuppea torquentem Balearis verbera fundae,
Cum nix alta iacet, glaciem cum flumina trudunt.
Quid tempestates autumni et sidera dicam,
Atque, ubi iam breviorque dies et mollior aestas,
Quae vigilanda viris ? vel cum ruit imbriferum ver,
Spicea iam campis cum messis inhorruit, et cum
Frumenta in viridi stipula lactentia turgent?
Saepe ego, cum flavis messorem induceret arvis
Agricola et fragili iam stringeret hordea culmo,
Omnia ventorum concurrere proelia vidi,

307.] Cerda comp. Hor. Epod. 2. 35, "Pavidumque leporem et advenam laqueo gruem Iucunda captat praemia." Cranes were a delicacy of the table: but the husbandman might naturally snare them in self defence: see v. 120.

308.] The epithet 'auritos' is said by Macr., Sat. 6. 5, to be taken from Afranius, who in one of his prologues introduces Priapus saying, "Nam quod volgo praedicant Aurito me parente natum, non ita est." The word itself merely means 'having ears,' the length of the ears being an inference from the application of the epithet, just as in Soph. Aj. 140, πtyvñs mɛɛiag, the notion of fluttering is inferred from the strict meaning 'winged.' 'Figere,' E. 2. 29. Here the word must mean to hit with a bullet, not with an arrow.

309.] "The sling.. was made of... hair, hemp, or leather (Veget. De Re Mil. 3. 14.



'habena,' A. 6. 579)." "The celebrity of the natives of the Balearic isles slingers is said to have arisen from the circumstance that when they were children their mothers obliged them to obtain their food by striking it with a sling (Veget. 1. 16)." Dict. A. ' funda.'

310.] 'Glaciem . . trudunt' apparently describes the process of freezing, the rivers driving down the ice in masses, which get stopped and joined together, so that the whole surface becomes frozen. Forb.'s explanation, when the rivers roll down the ice to the sea,' would be rather applicable to a thaw, which, as Keightley reminds us, is not the time for hunting.

311-334.] Autumn and spring have their special perils. Just when harvest is beginning, a hurricane will come and tear up the corn from the ground, or a thunderstorm will burst on the field in all its

[merged small][ocr errors]



311.] Tempestates' seems fixed by 'sidera' to mean weather' rather than 'storms.' The latter notion is not expressed, but left to be inferred. The stars on which the autumn storms were supposed to depend were Arcturus, the Centaur, the Kids, and the Crown. Cerda comp. Hom. Il. 16. 385, ἤματ ̓ ὀπωρινῷ ὅτε λαβρότατον χέει dwọ Zeúç. "Quas

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

312.] Mollior,' less oppressive. et mollis hiemps et frigida temperat aestas," Stat. S. 3. 5. 83.

313.] Vigilare aliquid' is to bestow wakeful care on a thing. "Vigilataque proelia dele," Juv. 7. 27. Ruit imbriferum,' comes down in showers,' Wagn., like "nox humida caelo Praecipitat," A 2. 8.

314.] Messis inhorruit :' öre opioσovoiv äpovpai, Hom. II. 23. 599. The erect and bristling appearance of the field is intended, as Forb. remarks, not its agitation by the wind.

[ocr errors]

315.] Serv. says that Varro in his books rerum divinarum speaks of a god Lactens, who made the ears of corn milky. Comp. Dict. B. 'Lactans.'

[ocr errors]

317.] The husbandman brings the reaper with him into the field, and is beginning himself to lop the ears. Stringeret,' as in v. 305, 'fragili culmo' being a descriptive ablative. This explanation is as old as Serv.

318.] Omnia ventorum proelia' seems to be a variety for 'proelia omnium ventorum.' 'I have seen all the armies of the winds meet in the shock of battle.' The winds are supposed to be blowing from all quarters at once, as in A. 1. &5 (note)., 2. 416. Comp. Daniel 7. 2, "The four winds of heaven strove upon the great sea. Lucr. talks of Ventorum paces,'

5. 1230, compared by Cerda.



Quae gravidam late segetem ab radicibus imis Sublimem expulsam eruerent; ita turbine nigro Ferret hiemps culmumque levem stipulasque volantis. Saepe etiam inmensum caelo venit agmen aquarum, Et foedam glomerant tempestatem imbribus atris Collectae ex alto nubes; ruit arduus aether, Et pluvia ingenti sata laeta boumque labores Diluit; inplentur fossae, et cava flumina crescunt Cum sonitu, fervetque fretis spirantibus aequor. Ipse Pater media nimborum in nocte corusca 319.]Late' with 'eruerent.' 'Ab radi- into foulness.' This would seem to be a cibus imis,' Lucr. 1. 352.

[ocr errors]

320.] Sublimem' is restored by Wagn. from Med. and Rom., for the old reading 'sublime.' 'Expulsam eruerent' is equivalent to expellerent et eruerent.' 'Ita' probably introduces a comparison between the hurricane that roots up the corn (gravidam segetem') and an ordinary gust which whirls about stubble ('culmumque levem stipulasque volantis'). The two things compared are perhaps not sufficiently distinct, but the point is the ease with which the work is done. But for the opposition of the epithets,' ita' would more naturally mean 'to such an extent,' 'so furiously,' as twice in a similar passage, Lucr. 1. 275, 286, "ita perfurit acri Cum fremitu, saevitque minaci murmure pontus ita magno turbidus imbri Molibus incurrens validis cum viribus amnis Dat sonitu magno stragem." Wagner's interpretation, making 'ita' a particle of transition, and connecting 'eruerent' with 'ferret,' is rather far fetched.

322.] The first part of the following description seems to be modelled on Lucr. 6. 253 foll., the latter on Hom. Il. 16. 384 foll. Venit agmen' is perhaps intended to suggest the image of a column marching, though the word may have a more general meaning.

323.] So Lucr. 1. c. of a storm, "trahit atram Fulminibus gravidam tempestatem atque procellis," from which Wakefield conjectured fetam' here. 'Foedam' however is supported by Lucr. 4. 169, "Tempestas perquam subito fit turbida foede Undique" (which from another part of the passage it is evident that Virg. had in his mind), "tempestates foedae fuere," Livy 25. 7, passages which seem to show that 'tempestatem' here is merely 'weather,' 'foedam' having the sense of ugly' or 'grim,'or, as we should say, foul.' 'Glomerant' is perhaps to be taken with foedam,' 'thicken' or 'mass


case of ὕστερον πρότερον, as the brewing of the storm would naturally precede the descent of the rain. But Keightley may be right in taking 'caelo,' v. 322, as the dative, the waters marching upon the sky, though Lucr. 6. 257 (Ut picis e caelo demissum flumen') is in favour of the common view.

324.] 'Ex alto' may very well be taken 'from the deep,' which would doubtless be the truer view of the phenomenon ; but on the whole it seems more probable that Virgil meant to represent clouds as mustered from on high, 'collectae,' like 'glomerant,' keeping up the military associations already introduced by agmen.' 'Ruit aether,' like 'Aether descendit' 2. 325,' caeli ruina' A. 1. 129, an image explained by Lucr. 6. 291, "Omnis uti videatur in imbrem vertier aether." Down crashes the whole dome of the firmament.'

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

325.] Sata laeta boumque labores,' A. 2. 306, a translation of Epya Bowv, Hes. Works 46. Homer in the parallel passage has ἔργ ̓ ἀνθρώπων. Virgil, as Ursinus remarks, seems to have imitated Apoll. R. 4. 1282, ǹé TɩV' ὄμβρον "Ασπετον, ὅστε βοῶν κατὰ μυρία ἔκλυσεν ἔργα.

326.] Fossae,' v. 372, otherwise called 'colliciae' or 'colliquiae.' 'Cava:' "During the summer months in Italy there is little or no water in the beds of most of the rivers, so that their channels may justly be called 'hollow,' for they resemble a road running between two high banks." Keightley.

[ocr errors]

327.] Fervet . . . aequor: "Freta circum Fervescunt graviter spirantibus incita flabris," Lucr. 6. 427. Spirantibus,' of the sea, as in A. 10. 291, "Qua vada non spirant," the violent heaving of the waves against the shore being compared to human breathing. The sea glows again through every panting inlet.'

328.] "Usque adeo, tetra nimborum nocte coorta, Inpendent atrae Formidinis ora superne, Cum commoliri tempestas

Fulmina molitur dextra; quo maxuma motu
Terra tremit; fugere ferae, et mortalia corda
Per gentis humilis stravit pavor; ille flagranti
Aut Athon, aut Rhodopen, aut alta Ceraunia telo
Deiicit; ingeminant austri et densissimus imber;
Nunc nemora ingenti vento, nunc litora plangunt.
Hoc metuens, caeli menses et sidera serva;

fulmina cœptat," Lucr. 6. 253. 'Ipse,' as
in A. 5, 249., 12. 725, &c., seems to ex-
press not only dignity (above, v. 121), but
personal exertion (A. 2. 321, &c.). 'Co-
rusca' with 'dextra' ='coruscante.' So
Sen. Hipp. 156, "Vibrans corusca fulmen
Aetnaeum manu" (quoted by Forb.), an
imitation which shows how he understood


329.] Molitur:' "validam in vitis molire bipennem," 4. 331. The word is one of rather wide application, generally implying effort in the agent or bulk in the object, or both. Quo motu,' referring to the sense rather than to the words of the preceding sentence. So "carmine quo," 4. 348; quo gemitu," A. 2. 73. Forb. comp. Sall. J. 114, "Per idem tempus adversum Gallos male pugnatum: quo metu Italia omnis contremuerat." "Ea signa dedit," A. 2. 171; "hic nuntius esto," A. 4. 237, are instances of the same principle. See Kritz on Sall. J. 54, ea formidine.' 'Maxuma," a perpetual epithet, the yaia TEλon of Hes. Theog. 173, &c., but acquiring force here from 'tremit.'

[ocr errors]

330.] Fugere' of instantaneous flight, likeexiit,' 2. 81. The two perfects connected by 'et' apparently describe actions connected and simultaneous, the asyndeton in the other clauses successive effects. Voss comp. Orpheus, Hymn 18. 13, Ὃν καὶ γαῖα πέφρικε θάλασσά τε παμφανόωσα, Καὶ θῆρες πτήσσουσιν, ÖTαν KTÚπOS оvas loon, Cerda Hes. Works 511, &c., where the effect on the various beasts is drawn out at length.

331.] Humilis' qualifies 'stravit.' Virg. may have thought of Lucr. 5. 1218 foll.

332.] Partly from Theocr. 7. 77, H ̓Αθω ἢ ̔Ροδόπαν ἢ Καύκασον ἐσχατόεντα. 'Athon' is the reading of all the MSS. The early editors introduced Atho' as the regular form of the Greek accusative. 'Athon' however occurs elsewhere, both in verse and prose (e. g. Livy 45. 30, Val. Fl. 1. 164, in which latter passage the final syllable is shortened as here). Accepting it, we must assume a form "A0og, which agrees with a precept laid down by Serv. on A. 12. 701, Prisc. 6. 13. 70, that the

[ocr errors]



last syllable of the nominative is to be made short. Alta Ceraunia,' a half translation of 'Aкpokɛpaúvia, which Hor. 1 Od. 3.20 uses untranslated. The name Kpaúvia seems the commoner of the two. The fact of lightning striking the mountains is urged by Lucr. 6. 420 as an argument against its supernatural origin, and explained by him physically ib. 458 foll. 'Telo,' as Biλog, is used of the thunderbolt, Aesch. Prom. 358, and elsewhere.

333.] Deiicit,' of lightning, A. 6. 581, Lucr. 5. 1125. "Telo deiicis," A. 11. 665. Here it is apparently intended that one of the peaks is overthrown, though 'deiicit Athon telo' may only mean 'deiicit telum in Athon.' Ingeminant:' it is observed that the rain and wind increase after a thunderclap. "Quo de concussu (comp. 'quo motu,' above) sequitur gravis imber et uber," Lucr. 6. 289.

[ocr errors]

334.] Plangunt,' intransitively, probably with a notion of wailing, in which sense the participle occurs without an accusative. "Plangentia iungit Agmina," A. 11. 145. The reflective 'planguntur' would be more usual, even in this sense; but the common use of 'plango' with an accusative of the person lamented may prepare us for finding it used without an expressed object of any kind. Forb. and Jahn make 'austri' and 'imber' the nominative, which seems less forcible and appropriate. Plangit, the reading of Rom., adopted by Masvicius and Wakefield, would be awkward, whether the nominative were sought in 'imber' or in 'Iuppiter.' 'Doubly loud howls the south wind, doubly thick gathers the cloud of rain, and under the blast's mighty stroke forest and shore by turns wail in agony.

335-350.] The precautions to be observed are attention to times and seasons, and observance of the rural deities, especially Ceres, who is to be worshipped duly in the spring of each year, with offerings of milk, wine, and honey, and the ceremony of leading a victim round the young corn with a rustic procession.'

335.] A virtual repetition of vv. 204 foll. Sidera' is not here to be restricted to the

« ForrigeFortsæt »