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129, 130.] the whole episode of Laodamia, seems intended to set forth by comparison the worth of Catullus's mistress.
To Lesbia, on the detection of her inconstancy. 1. nôsse] primarily, 'to know,' here in imitation of an occasional use of the Greek yıvászon, it implies affectionate regard, 'to have been intimate with.'
3. dilexi] diligere properly means to esteem.
5. cognovi] cognoscere, means specifically to discover, as agnoscere to recognize.
7. injuria talis] by throwing obstacles in this way inflamed his passion, (cogit amare magis,) though it diminished his good will (bene velle.)
On an Ingrate. 2. pium] with its kindred pietas &c. seems to have the general signification of regardful of duty,' the particular duty or relation to be determined from the context; here grateful.'
3.] construe, fecisse benigne est nihil. 5. ut mihi] 'as to me,'' in my case.'
To Lesbia. 3. fædere) an allusion to the constancy and lasting obligation of the marriage relation which fædus often signifies.
4. amore tuo] Catullus has not regarded the distinction which commonly obtains, between amore tuo and amore tui.
6. pio] 'constant.'
Saddened by the unfaithfulness of Lesbia, and conscious of his own weakness, Catullus pleads his own fidelity, and earnestly and seriously prays to the gods to be delivered from the power of his love for her.
4. Divům . . numine abusum] by perjury.
A man of unkissable lips, but whom Lesbia preferred to Catullus.
4. notorum] of his acquaintance.'
To Juventius. A young Roman, whom Catullus reproves and ridicules for having preferred to himself a jaundice visaged Pisaurian.
A neatly expressed epigram addressed to Quintius, probably a rival with Catullus in the favors of Aufilena.
Of Arrius. A Roman cockney, who made himself notorious by an affected pronunciation.
8. eadem hæc] (these same' words, to which Arrius had given the aspirate. leniter ac leviter] softly and lightly.'
9. postilla] i. q. postea.
Of Quintia and Lesbia. Catullus compares Quintia, who was esteemed a great beauty, with his own Lesbia, allowing to Quintia many beauties, but denying her claim to be called beautiful.
3. venustas] 'grace.' 4. salis) 'elegance.'
3. deprecor] seems here to have not merely the force of 'to pray against,' to deprecate, but also includes the notion of imprecation. So many maledictions as Lesbia utters against him, he forthwith and continually invokes on her.
On the Smyrna of the Poet Cinna. Fragments of a poem in which Catullus gives his opinion of the worth of several cotemporary writers, and of their prospects of immortality.
1. Smyrna] the name of an elaborate poem of Cinna. This was an intimate friend of Cæsar and of Catullus, (mei) Corn. Helvius Cinna.
3. Hortensius] Quintus the celebrated orator. 6. pervolvent] "turn over,' read.'
7. Volusi annales] vide Carm. 26.
8.] for the use of fishmongers in wrapping up fish.
10. Antimacho] a native of Colophon, who wrote a huge poem on the Theban war.
To Licinius Calvus.
On the early death of Quintilia, solacing his grief with the hope that if an affectionate remembrance by the survivors, may be grateful to the departed, the sadness of her untimely loss of the joys of life, would be overpaid by the strength and constancy of his love.
Catullus had gone to Troas, to pay the last honors to the Manes of his brother, who was buried there. After the usual solemnities, he addresses the dead in the words of this poem. The love of Catullus for his brother, the only relative he mentions, is one of the brighter features in a character too deeply stained with the licentiousness of the age.
He commends to his friend Cornelius, his power of keeping secrets.