the first stopping-place for the night on the Appian Way, sixteen
Roman miles (not quite fifteen of ours) south by east of Rome.
quarters, no doubt a public house.
probably a friendly overestimate, as no account of him has come down
to us with all his learning. Forum
Appi: twenty Roman miles on the same road, at the head
of the canal through the Pomptine Marshes. Thus far Horace and his
companions seem to have travelled on foot, while the other members
of the party drove and met them, some at Appii Forum (cf. comites,
v. 9), and some at Anxur.
as if their cheating was from enmity to the human race. Cf. Tony Weller's
estimate of pike keepers. (I have no clue as to who this is.--Webmaster.)
i.e. taking two days for it instead of one.
as the clothing of the ancients was long and flowing, "girding
up the loins" was a symbol of activity and energy, as appears
by the contrasted ignavi and tardis.
severe. The road was paved the whole length with large polygonal
stones which were much worn and slippery, as they appear to this day.
7. hic ego,
etc.: i.e. he took no dinner on account of the state of his
9. iam nox,
etc.: an imitation of the Epic style for the burlesque effect. The
canal journey was made by night, as formerly often on the Erie Canal,
and nowadays in steamboats. (Remember,
this book was written in 1887--Webmaster).
the slaves of the passengers.
12. huc appelle:
the cry of persons who wish to get on board. trecentos
inseris, ohe iam satis est: the cry of the passengers,
who are afraid of overloading the boat.
13. aes exigitur,
they are collecting the fare (naulum).
mula: that towed
amicam, his absent sweetheart, "The girl
I left behind me." ut,
while, in the loose manner of using that conjunction in the
a passenger on board (possibly the passengers collectively).
The sleeping of the passengers is the occasion of the stopping of
the boat. the word ordinarily means a passenger on foot, but here
the supposition of a traveller on the tow-path seems absurd.
the halter. missae,
dies, etc.: i.e. the passengers wake up, and
discover the trick.
hot-headed, less patient than the rest.
pounds, lit. hews: a colloquial expression.
vix demum, at
last and hardly then. quarta
hora: about ten o'clock, though the distance was less
than twenty miles.
an old Italian divinity of uncertain attributes and functions. She
had a sacred grove and fountain on the Appian Way, at the end of the
canal, where Horace landed, made his morning toilet, and took his
Tarracina (Anxur) was situated on a high rocky hill on the sea. Hence
the use of sub, and of impositum,
etc.: apparently the dignitaries came by some rapid conveyance on
the Appian Way, or they may have been already in the neighborhood,
and were met by the poet at Tarracina, where the Appian turns eastward
away from the coast.
L. Cocceius Nerva, the great-grandfather of the Emperor Nerva. He,
as well as Maecenas, was a friend of Octavian, and had in B.C. 40
assisted in arranging the Peace of Brundisium. (See Introduction to
this Satire.) Hence soliti, v. 29.
30. hic oculis,
etc.: a detail like that in v. 48. The poet consumes the time in medical
Fonteius Capito, who assisted in the embassy as a friend and partisan
of Antonius. He remained with the latter and assisted him in the contest
unguem: a proverbial expression drawn from trying the
surface of marble and wood with the nail; perfect to a hair.
sc. esset or est.
eleven miles east of Tarracina, traversed by the Appian Way.
name of the man and his office are inserted in the form of a date,
as if he were important enough to give his name to the year like the
consuls. Originally praetor was the Italian name
for the highest magistrate of an independent city; and some cities
were allowed to retain the old name after their subjugation by the
Romans, though generally such magistrates were called duoviri.
The person here seems to have made himself ridiculous by putting on
the airs of a consul, assuming the honors (praemia)
of that office,--the toga praetexta with its crimson border,
the broad crimson stripe on the front of the tunic, and further, what
does not seem to have been used by the consul, a pan of charcoal for
burning incense before him. Whether this display was in honor of the
distinguishing visitors, as is very likely, does not appear.
we are glad not to stop there.
weak-headed: i.e. his head was turned by his position.
a mere clerk who had risen to the office. These clerks might be of
low origin, or even freedmen. Cf. v.
urbe: Formiae, a town twelve miles further. The form
of expression no doubt contains a bit of satire. Mamurra was a knight
from Formiae, whose other names even are not known, who rose through
the favor of Julius Caesar to wealth and some distinction, but spent
his wealth in extravagant living, and never possessed a very noble
reputation. Of his family (implied in the plural) nothing whatever
is known. manemus,
spend the night. Cf. v.
L. Licinius Terentius Varro Murena, the brother of Terentia, Maecenas'
wife, apparently had like many noble Romans a villa at Formiae; as
probably also Fonteius did, who entertained the travellers at dinner
Plotius Tucca, whom with Varius, both literary friends
of Virgil, that poet made his literary executors. Cf. I.10.44
and 81, and I.6.55.
eighteen miles from Formiae, towards Campania.
we should expect quibus depending on candidiores,
but the poet says, "of a kind of which kind the earth has produced
none fairer than they."
quis, and to whom no, etc.
in my senses.
ponti, a bridge (three miles from Sinuessa) over the
Savo, a small river just north of the Volturnus. The word
Campano seems to be used loosely, as the real boundary
between Latium and Campania is a few miles farther north.
an inn especially for public officers, who regularly travelled at
the public expense.
the stewards; apparently persons whose duty it was to furnish
the entertainment which the cities were bound to supply to state travellers.
It may be that they were in this case bound to supply only certain
articles, the travellers bringing the rest, or the words ligna
salemque, may mean entertainment generally, with a hint at
its meagreness. Cf. v. 50.
from here; i.e. starting the next morning.
miles farther on, the largest and most important city of Campania.
the baggage only is mentioned, but the whole train is referred to.
sc. pila (cf. v. 49), for exercise before
dinner as was the custom of the Romans, while the two poets took a
nap instead, as was also not unusual.
the Romans had several games of ball which consisted chiefly of throwing
and catching, the use of the bat being a modern improvement. Cf. I.6.126.
to sore eyes. et
crudis, and weak stomachs. The word means properly
undigested, but was regularly transferred to the dyspeptic himself.
well-stocked. Cf. v. 46. villa:
many noble Romans had country-seats in various parts of Italy.
Caudium, the scene of the great defeat of the Romans by the Samnites,
was in the mountain region of the Hirpini, twenty-one miles from Capua,
eastward towards the Apennines. super,
on the heights above the town. nunc
mihi, etc.: the poet again assumes the Epic style. The
scene described was evidently of a kind very common among the rich
Romans, who were particularly fond of these scurrilous encounters.
Cf. the word scurra, and Plin. Ep. IX.17.
a buffoon (scurra) accompanying the expedition in
the capacity of clerk. Messi
Cicirri: a person of the same kind belonging in the town,
and so no doubt brought out by Cocceius, who was familiar with the
region, to pit against the favorite from Rome. Cicirrus (kíkirros,
cock, rooster) is a nickname.
53. quo patre:
the genealogy of the hero is always a matter of interest in romance.
The burlesque here is the more striking because Sarmentus as a slave
was filius nullius, and Messius was a despised Oscan.
predicate of est to be supplied with genus,
which is here equivalent to a plural, as meaning the man's ancestors.
feri: apparently the fabled unicorn, famous for its supposed
ferocity. The comparison was partly on account of his size and ugliness,
partly on account of the scar referred to in v. 61.
as if he said, "So I am; you'd better look out for me!"
shaking his head like the supposed animal. O
tua, etc.: the reply of Sarmentus: "How dangerous
you would be if you hadn't had your horn cut off." Messius had
had a great wen (Campanus morbus) removed from his forehead.
cornu, abl. of
thus. . .as you are. at,
now, introducing the explanatory words of Horace.
i.e. a hairy scar was left.
diseases arising from loose living which disfigure the face or body
are regularly assigned to some foreign country, as by the English
to France, by the French to Italy.
a cognate acc., like "to play Hamlet." The point is in the
ugliness, huge size, and scarred forehead (representing a cyclops'
eye) of the buffoon, all of which agreed with the character of Polyphemus,
whose hopeless love for Galatea was a favorite theme with the ancients,
somewhat like Beauty and the Beast. saltaret:
i.e. to act in pantomime.
the chaffing of Cicirrus is aimed at the servile condition of Sarmentus
as well as his diminutive size. Much of the fun to a Roman would lie
in the contrast between the puny, dainty favorite from the city and
the huge, overgrown countryman with his phenomenal ugliness; and it
will be seen that their abuse of each other is directed at these peculiarities.
such cross-matches had a charm for the Romans, as we see by some of
their gladiatorial contests. donasset:
the whole point is in the ironical suggestion that he was a runaway
slave, as it was the custom for manumitted slaves to make an offering
to the household gods, though probably not of a chain, an allusion
which is inserted here in analogy to cases like Od. III.26.4,
68. cui satis,
etc.: he might have saved enough from his rations, such a puny fellow
as he, to buy his freedom.
the eighth day, twelve miles. sedulus,
set himself (i.e. his house) afire.
escaping, of course from the focus or fireplace
in the kitchen, and so spreading.
etc.: the picture of the efforts to save the dinner.
their hunger. timentis:
frightened, as accords with their servile nature.
close on the borders of which Horace passed his early childhood; hence
a local name for a hot southern wind, the Sirocco.
the colloquial shortening for erepsissemus.
Trivici: an unimportant
village where they passed the night. but for the rest afforded them,
they never could have dragged on over the mountains.
the cause of the smoke. camino:
properly the word for forge or furnace, but here no doubt some kind
of a fireplace for warming. But no chimney like ours can be shown
to have existed among the Romans.
of the rapid pace; cf. erepsemus, v. 79.
raedis: a heavy
travelling coach with four wheels. The exact shape is not known, but
it must have been large and roomy, and was the ordinary public carriage.
stop, pass the night. Cf. Od. I.1.25.
to Porphyrion, Equos Tuticus (which could not easily be introduced
in hexameter on account of the succession of longs and shorts, s
l l s s); but this is extremely uncertain.
i.e. water, elsewhere the cheapest of all things, is actually
sold for money here.
the traveller supplies himself with bread in advance, for the next
town farther on, Canusium, has gritty bread.
for prosody, see Introduction.
this construction seems odd to an English-speaking person, but an
antecedent which would be in apposition with some preceding idea is,
in Latin, embodies in the relative clause, a place no richer,
etc., which, etc., as in quae res, a
thing which, and the like. aquae,
genitive after ditior, as an adjective of plenty.
the settlement of this Greek chief in Apulia was a common tradition.
Cf. Æn. VIII.9.
the town Rubi, the next stopping-place. utpote:
more commonly found with relatives, but used by Horace several times
with adjective expressions. Cf. I.4.24,
Barium, on the coast; hence piscosi.
Gnatia Lymphis iratis:
because the place has no water-springs, of which the Lymphae--a Latin
equivalent of Nymphae--were the tutelary divinities.
sacro: i.e. the inhabitants claim a miraculous
melting of incense without fire, probably some volcanic effect. (cf.
Plin. H. N. II.111, Reperitur in Salentino oppido Egnatia
imposito ligno in saxum quoddam ibi sacrum protinus flammam exsistere).
a name apparently Greek, but a common one of freedmen, and here assigned
to a Jew, perhaps a converted Greek. The Jews were regarded as especially
superstitious (cf. I.9.71 and II.3.281
the Epicurean doctrine that the gods paid no attention to human affairs,
but lived at ease in the intermundane spaces. Cf. Lucr. V.82.
all strange occurrences were supposed by the ancients to be direct
interpositions of the gods in human affairs to indicate their displeasure
(tristis), a notion that the Epicureans combated,
asserting that all such took place by the operations of nature.
either the rest of the journey (if it continued any farther) was taken
by sea to Tarentum, or Horace may have stopped here.