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Pinguibus a stabulis, meropesque, aliaeque volucres,
Et manibus Procne pectus signata cruentis ;
Omnia nam late vastant, ipsasque volantis
Ore ferunt dulcem nidis inmitibus escam.

At liquidi fontes et stagna virentia musco
Adsint, et tenuis fugiens per gramina rivus,
Palmaque vestibulum aut ingens oleaster inumbret,
Ut, cum prima novi ducent examina reges
Vere suo, ludetque favis emissa iuventus,

mending as a safeguard that the hive should
have two or three entrances. The 'stellio,'
a variety of the lizard, is mentioned below,
v. 243.

14.] Stabula' here and in v. 191 may be transferred by Virgil from the cattle, the subject of the preceding book; Col. (9. 6.4) however uses it of bees, as elsewhere of poultry, peacocks, and even fish. 'Pinguibus' seems to give the reason why care should be taken. Med. has ab stabulis,' which Forb. and Ladewig adopt. 'Meropes:' "the 'merops apiaster L.,' or bee-eater, is a bird of passage in the south of Europe. It is like the swallow, of the fissirostral tribe, and, like it also, hunts insects on the wing. Its bill is long and slender, slightly curved; its wings long and pointed. The 'meropes usually visit Greece and Italy in flocks of from twenty to thirty; they very rarely stray so far north as England" (Keightley). Aliaeque volucres,' which Heyne thinks feeble, is connected by Wagn. closely with the next line, as being equivalent to the common Greek idiom, ἄλλα τε πτηνὰ καὶ Пpóкvη. He does not however produce any similar instance in Latin; the parallel too seems to fail from the previous specification of 'meropes,' which shows that 'aliae' means 'other than what precedes,' not other than what follows.' If we are to account for what is probably a mere piece of inartificial writing, we might say that the swallow is mentioned after the aliae volucres' because Virgil chooses to conceive of her with reference to her original human form.


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15.] Procne:' see on E. 6. 78. 'Manibus cruentis:' the blood which stained her hands was supposed to have dropped on her breast. Such at least is the interpretation suggested by Ov. M. 6. 669, "neque adhuc de pectore caedis Excessere notae, signataque sanguine pluma est." Otherwise it would seem more natural to understand of her beating and rending her breast in her agony for the child she murdered, as the note of the nightingale is interpreted as a



lament for Itys. The hostility of the swallow to bees as well as of the bee-eater is mentioned by Aristot. H. A. 9. 40, Geopon. 15. 2, and Aelian 5. 11.

16.] Ipsas' opposed to 'omnia.' 'Volantis' is commonly taken as a substantive, but it seems rather to mean that bees are caught on the wing.

17.] The epithet is transferred from the nestlings to the nest, as in A. 12. 475, "hirundo Pabula parva legens, nidisque loquacibus escas,' ," and perhaps A. 5. 214, "Cui domus et dulces latebroso in pumice nidi" (see however G. 1. 414). Col. (7.9) actually uses ' nidus' of a litter of pigs-" in cubili suam quisque matrem nidus exspectat," but this is probably poetical imitation rather than idiomatic prose.

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18-32.] Let it be placed near water, standing or running, and overshadowed by a tree, under which they can take refuge from the heat of a spring noon. Stones or branches should be thrown into the water as bridges where they can dry themselves if they get wet. There should be cassia, wild thyme, savory, and violets growing near.'

18.] This is recommended by Aristotle (H. A. 9. 40), the writer in the Geopon. (15.2), Varro (3. 16), and Columella (9. 5).

19.] Tenuis:' Varro (1. c.) says that the water should not be more than two or three inches deep.

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20.] 'Inumbret' was restored by Heins. from Med., Rom., and others for obumbret.'

21.] The swarm is headed by new chiefs, who lead out the colony, 'iuventus.'

22.] Vere suo,' their own spring, the time when they are in vigour, after their winter seclusion. This seems more poetical than to understand the words with Ameis, "ver quod proprium sit apum, seu quod verum habeant ver, incipiens a verno equinoctio et pertinens usque ad solstitium aestivum." Ludet,' according to Keightley, refers to the incessant flying backward and forward of the bees previous to the rising of the swarm.


Vicina invitet decedere ripa calori,

Obviaque hospitiis teneat frondentibus arbos.
In medium, seu stabit iners, seu profluet humor,
Transversas salices et grandia coniice saxa,
Pontibus ut crebris possint consistere et alas
Pandere ad aestivum solem, si forte morantis
Sparserit aut praeceps Neptuno inmerserit Eurus.
Haec circum casiae virides et olentia late
Serpylla et graviter spirantis copia thymbrae
Floreat, inriguumque bibant violaria fontem.
Ipsa autem, seu corticibus tibi suta cavatis,
Seu lento fuerint alvearia vimine texta,
Angustos habeant aditus: nam frigore mella

23.] There may be a bank near to invite them.' So obvia' in the next line. "Decedere nocti," E. 8. 88, G. 3. 467.

24.] The image is from a man who meets his friend and detains him ('teneat ') hospitably. Forb. comp. Hor. 2 Od. 3. 10, "umbram hospitalem," of the shade of the pine and poplar.

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25.] Stabit' of the 'stagna' v. 18, 'profluet' of the 'rivus' v. 19.

27.] That there may be many bridges for them to stand upon.' Florentinus in the Geopon. 15. 2, and Varro, l. c., assign a different reason for the recommendation, viz. that the bees may be able to sit and drink.

28.] 'Pandere ad aestivum solem :' comp. 1. 398. 'Morantis' seems to mean lingering near the water, or pausing in their flight, but it is not easy to see the reason for it.

29.] 'Sparserit,' sprinkled, Wund., rightly, as the context shows. 'Praeceps,' the headlong sweep of the wind suggests the headlong fall of the bees, as if it had been 'praecipites.' 'Neptuno' is intended "angustis rebus addere honorem."

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30.] Haec circum:' around this watered spot where the apiary is to be. Casiae,' 2. 213, E. 2. 49 note.

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31.] Serpylla,' E. 2. 11, where it is similarly characterized. 'Thymbrae :' "the thymbra,' though a kind of satureia,' was different from it, for Columella has (10. 233) Et satureia thymi referens thymbraeque saporem.' It may be that the thymbra' is the wild, the 'satureia' the cultivated plant. The savory, though cultivated in our gardens, is not one of our indigenous plants" (Keightley). 'Graviter spirantis' is here used in a good sense, contrary to its usual acceptation. Pliny talks of "odore iucunde gravi" 21. 10, "sua

viter gravi" 25. 9.

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32.] Inriguum' active, as in Tibull. 2. 1. 44, "Tunc bibit inriguas fertilis hortus aquas." So "rigui amnes" 2. 485.

33-50.] The entrances to the hives should be narrow, to exclude heat and cold. These indeed the bees endeavour to protect themselves against by stopping up every crevice with wax and the pollen of flowers: nay, they sometimes hive under ground, in hollow rocks and in decayed trees. Accordingly plaster the crevices yourself with mud and leaves. There should be no yews in the neighbourhood, no burning of crabs near, nor should the hive be in a marshy spot, or where there is an echo.'

33.] Comp. note on 2. 453. 'Corticibus cavatis,' 2. 387.

34.] Rom. and others read 'alvaria,' being misled by the pronunciation. Other kinds of hives are mentioned by the agricultural writers (Varro 3. 16, Col. 9. 6, &c.), those made of the ferula, which Col. and Pliny put next to cork, of hollowed wood or boards, of earthenware, of dung, and of bricks.

As a

35.] The bees make their own entrances narrow, as Aristot. (H. A. 9. 40) remarks. The reasons which make this desirable, as given by Col. 9. 7, are, first, the exclusion of the cold, secondly, the exclusion of lizards and the larger insects. protection against the extremes of the weather he also lays stress on what Virgil notices afterwards, the plastering of the hives, and on their being made of a proper material, cork being the best fitted for that object, earthenware the worst. Keightley thinks that Virgil misunderstood his authorities, and that Col. would not have mentioned the weather at all as a reason for

Cogit hiemps, eademque calor liquefacta remittit.
Utraque vis apibus pariter metuenda; neque illae
Nequiquam in tectis certatim tenuia cera
Spiramenta linunt, fucoque et floribus oras
Explent, collectumque haec ipsa ad munera gluten
Et visco et Phrygiae servant pice lentius Idae.
Saepe etiam effossis, si vera est fama, latebris
Sub terra fovere larem, penitusque repertae
Pumicibusque cavis exesaeque arboris antro.
Tu tamen et levi rimosa cubilia limo

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narrow entrances, but for his deference to stabilimentum."
the poet.
36.] Remittit' gives the opposite image
to 'cogit.' Ameis remarks that liquefacta
remittit' has the force of reliquefacit,' a
word which is not found.



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37.] Utraque vis' in prose would probably have been utriusque vis.' Comp. such expressions as 'ea signa' A. 2. 171. Apibus metuenda :' see on 2. 419. 'Neque illae,' &c. : nec te Nequiquam lucis Hecate praefecit Avernis," A. 6. 118. Nequiquam' does not mean 'without an object' (Heyne), but without result,' as v. 45 shows. The bees take good care of themselves; but you should care for them nevertheless.'

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'Oras' is explained by

Keightley of the entrances, to which, according to Varro and the Geopon., the 'propolis,' or some similar substance, was ap plied. Explent' however points rather to crevices, as Taubm. understands it, though no instance is given of 'orae' in this sense. Ora' might be suggested, and paralleled from A. 2. 482, "lato dedit ore fenestram." 40.] Haec ipsa ad munera :' "ad linenda spiramenta et explendas oras."

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41.] Visco,' 1. 139. Pice Idae,' 3. 460. Phrygiae Idae,' A. 3. 6.

42.] Effossis' is commonly explained of holes formed by nature or by man. I have been told however that there is reason to think that bees make holes for themselves, which is Serv.'s interpretation.

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43.] Fovere larem,' 3. 420. the old reading before Heins., supported by Med., Rom, and many others, if not contrary to the sense, would at any rate create a tautology with 'effossis.'

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44.] Pumicibus:' comp. the simile A. 12. 587 foll., and that in Il. 2. 87 foll., where the bees issue πέτρης ἐκ γλαφυρῆς. The line is an echo of 2. 453, "Corticibusque cavis vitiosaeque ilicis alveo,” where see note. Some MSS. give 'alvo' here, but 'antro' is acknowledged by Macrob. Sat. 6. 7, and was doubtless preferred by Virgil for variety's sake. 'Alveo' would remind us of the hive; 'antro' suggests the parallel between the hollow trunk and the rocky cavity just mentioned.

39.] 'Spiramenta,' 1. 90, here of the crevices (rimosa cubilia,' v. 45) with the earlier commentators, not with Heyne of the entrances. The 'fucus' seems to be the pollen of flowers, as Keightley explains it, distinguished from the gluten,' a substance collected from trees. Comp. v. 160, "Narcissi lacrimam et lentum de cortice gluten." Aristotle seems to class them together (H. A. 9. 40), oikodoμovo rà κηρία φέρουσαι τῶν τε ἄλλων ἀνθέων καὶ ἀπὸ τῶν δένδρων τὰ δάκρυα ιτέας καὶ πτελέας καὶ ἄλλων κολλωδεστάτων. τούτῳ δὲ καὶ τὸ ἔδαφος διαχρίουσι τῶν äλλwv Oŋpiwv EvEKEV. Varro (1. c.) distinguishes between the 'propolis,' with which the entrance is rubbed, and the epilákn, with which the combs are glued together. Modern English writers appear to include both under the name of bee-bread, though there is some difference of opinion about the use made of this substance. But it is not easy to say what Virgil really means, as no other instance is quoted of 'fucus' used in this or a similar sense. 'Floribus' occurs again v. 250, seemingly for this same pollen, and so apparently Pliny 11.7, speaks of the 'propolis' as "crassioris iam materiae additis floribus, nondum tamen cera, sed favorum

45.] For et levi' many MSS. give 'e levi,' a reading acknowledged by Serv., who separates it from limo' and supposes it to mean 'lightly' (like 'e facili,' 'e tuto,' &c.), the bee-keeper being reminded that a slight effort on his part will accomplish what costs the bees a great one. Burm., who points out the metrical fault of this ingenious explanation, himself reads 'e levi,' citing similar instances from medical writers, e. g. Cels. 5. 28, "Prius ungi ex cerussa

Ungue fovens circum, et raras superiniice frondes.
Neu propius tectis taxum sine, neve rubentis
Ure foco cancros, altae neu crede paludi,

Aut ubi odor caeni gravis, aut ubi concava pulsu
Saxa sonant vocisque offensa resultat imago.

Quod superest, ubi pulsam hiemem Sol aureus egit
Sub terras caelumque aestiva luce reclusit,

pustulae debent." He also suggests that 'e
leni' might be read in the sense proposed
by Serv., who himself mentions et leni'
as another reading. As however 'et levi'
has the authority of Med. and other MSS.,
we may safely prefer it, as the more ob-
vious reading, to either of these refine-
ments. The same precept is given by Col.
9. 14, Varro 3. 16, &c.

46.] Fovens,' because one object is to keep out the cold air. Wagn. says he should have expected 'densas' not 'raras,' but Keightley replies that the poet knew leaves do not lie close when spread on any thing.

47.] Heyne rightly vindicates the position of this and the three following lines against any who may think that they would have come in more naturally among the cautions of vv. 9 foll. The question there was about choosing a neighbourhood for the bees where they might expatiate without injury: Virgil is now speaking of the hive, and after directing that it should be made weather-tight, he naturally passes on to speak about smells and sounds which might penetrate it and injure the inmates. The rhythm of the line resembles that of 2. 299," Neve inter vites corulum sere; neve flagella." 'Taxum,' E. 9. 30 (note). 'Tectis,' the hives, as above v. 38.

48.] With crede we might supply 'tecta,' but as the hive would not in any case be actually planted in a deep marsh, it is perhaps better to consider the verb as intransitive, do not trust a marsh' being equivalent to 'do not calculate on it as not likely to do harm,' 'do not enter into relations with it.' So probably A. 7. 97, "thalamis neu crede paratis." In the next line 'locis' may easily be supplied from 'ubi.'

49.] The dislike of bees for strong smells is abundantly vouched for by various authorities whom Cerda quotes. Pliny (11. 18) says that they attack persons who are strongly perfumed; Col. (9. 14) that they are angry at those who smell of wine. 'Pulsu,' with the stroke or impact of a sound. The two clauses, as usual, state the same thing.

50.] Virgil seems to have been thinking


of Lucr. 4. 570,"Pars (vocum) solidis ad-
lisa locis reiecta sonorem Reddit, et inter-
dum frustratur imagine verbi." (Comp. his
whole language about visual images in the
early part of the same book.) Varro (3.
16) recommends placing bee-hives " potis-
simum ubi non resonant imagines," which
with Cic. Tusc. 3. 2, "ea virtuti resonat,
tanquam imago," would seem to show
that 'imago' was a received word for an
echo, not a mere poetical expression. Co-
lumella adopts a periphrasis: "nec mi-
nus vitentur cavae rupis aut vallis argutiae
(Forcell. quotes an application of the word
from Pliny 10. 29 to the varieties in the
note of the nightingale), quas Graeci ǹxous
vocant." There is some impropriety in the
use of the word here, as though it suits
'resultat,' it cannot in strictness be called
'offensa.' That which strikes the rock
('offenditur') is the actual sound; the reflec-
tion or echo is that which is returned.
Modern writers speak less decisively of the
effect of sound on bees, some doubting
whether they have a sense of hearing.

51-66.] When warm weather begins, the bees issue forth and spread themselves over the country near, culling from flowers and streams what will support their young and make wax and honey. Accordingly when you see them swarming in the air, be sure that they will make for water and trees. Rub with savory and balm the place where they are likely to settle, and make a clashing of cymbals, and they will alight of their own accord and get into the hive.'

51.] Quod superest,' 2. 346. 'Pulsam

sub terras: the image seems to be partly mythological, winter being vanquished by the sun like the Titanic powers by Jupiter, and driven down to Tartarus; partly derived from the succession of day and night, which appear to ascend from under the earth and go down to it again. The physical explanation suggested by Serv. seems scarcely borne out by the passage to which he refers, Lucr. 6. 840 foll.

52.] In the winter the sky is closed up with clouds and bound with frost, so that it is here said to be opened and relaxed by light and warmth. Aperit annum,” 1.



Illae continuo saltus silvasque peragrant
Purpureosque metunt flores et flumina libant
Summa leves. Hinc nescio qua dulcedine laetae
Progeniem nidosque fovent, hinc arte recentis
Excudunt ceras et mella tenacia fingunt.
Hinc ubi iam emissum caveis ad sidera caeli
Nare per aestatem liquidam suspexeris agmen
Obscuramque trahi vento mirabere nubem,
Contemplator: aquas dulcis et frondea semper
Tecta petunt. Huc tu iussos adsperge sapores,
Trita melisphylla et cerinthae ignobile gramen,
Tinnitusque cie et Matris quate cymbala circum :

'Aestiva' points to the twofold division of the year, 3. 296. With 'luce reclusit' comp. A. 9. 461, "iam rebus luce retectis," and perhaps A. 4. 119, "radiisque retexerit orbem."

53.] "Silvas saltusque peragrat,” A. 4. 72.

54.] "Floriferis ut apes in saltibus omnia limant," Lucr. 3. 11. 'Metunt flores' is doubtless to be explained of collecting the pollen, v. 38, though the verb and the epithet 'purpureos' make the expression a bold one. Col. (9. 14) however follows Virgil, as Keightley observes. Something perhaps is attributable to the colour of the language, which is heightened so as to identify the bees with larger animals, especially with men. 'Purpureos,' E. 5. 38 note. 55.] Leves' points partly to their being on the wing, partly, like 'libant' and 'summa," to the smallness of their draught. 'Hinc' gives the reason for 'metunt flores' and libant flumina.' 'Nescio... laetae,' 1. 412. Here the words are rather difficult, as they may refer either to the pleasure of collecting the pollen (perhaps to the actual sense of physical sweetness), or to the delight of rearing their young.

56.] Progeniem nidosque' are doubtless meant to be taken together (see note on v. 17, and comp. 1. 414). 'Fovent' is probably to be taken in a wide sense, expressing warmth as well as support (see vv. 42, 46), bee-bread being supposed to contribute to both.

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'afterwards' (comp. E. 4. 37, where it is similarly followed by ubi iam'). Probably however Keightley is right in explaining it on this account,' sc. their love of trees and water, as there appears to be a sort of parallel between vv. 54, 55, and v. 61. Ameis, recognizing the parallel, thinks that hinc' indicates the several stages in the bees' occupations.-There seems no reason for supposing a reference in caveis' to the seats in the theatre, as the word is used of cages, hen-coops, &c. If any thing, there may be an allusion to beasts let loose from their cages.

59.] Aestatem liquidam,' of the clear summer sky, what is commonly regarded as time being spoken of as space. Comp. E. 9. 44,"pura sub nocte." 'Liquidam also suggests the notion of water, to agree with 'nare.'

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60.] Trahi' seems to signify not only length, as in v. 557, but agitation by the wind: see v. 9.

61.] Contemplator,' 1. 187.

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62.] Huc,' on some tree towards which they may be tending, and to which you wish to lure them. Iussos,' 'those which you will have been told,' i. e. which I am going to tell you. Heyne comp. v. 549, monstratas excitat aras.' 'Sapores' refers rather to the smell than to the taste, as the branches were to be rubbed with the plants mentioned in the next line.


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63.] 'Melisphyllum' or 'melissophyllum,' in Lat. apiastrum' (though the two are apparently distinguished by Col. 9. 8),

balm.' Cerintha' is usually supposed to be the 'cerintha major, L.;' but Tenore asserts that this does not grow in the south of Italy, so that he inclines to identify Virgil's plant with the satureia thymbra' (v. 31 note) or 's. capitata.'

64.] Another instance of Virgil's magni

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