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destinat ac ferri capulum repetivit in usum,
gramineam viridi ut foderet de caespite terram.
iam memor inceptum peragens sibi cura laborem
congestum cumulavit opus, atque aggere multo
telluris tumulus formatum crevit in orbem.
quem circum lapidem levi de marmore formans
conserit; assiduae curae memor. hic et acanthos


et rosa purpureum crescent pudibunda ruborem et violae omne genus; hic est et Spartica myrtus 400 atque hyacinthos et hic Cilici crocus editus arvo, laurus item Phoebi surgens decus; hic rhododaphne liliaque et roris non avia cura marini herbaque turis opes priscis imitata Sabina chrysanthusque hederaeque nitor pallente corymbo, et bocchus Libyae regis memor. hic amarantus 406 bumastusque virens et semper florida tinus. non illinc Narcissus abest, cui gloria formae igne Cupidineo proprios exarsit in artus; et quoscumque novant vernantia tempora flores, 410 his tumulus super inseritur. tum fronte locatur elogium, tacita format quod littera voce: "parve Culex, pecudum custos tibi tale merenti funeris officium vitae pro munere reddit.”

899 rubicunda FCL: rubibunda B. ruborem rV: terrorem L: tenorem Plésent.

400 parthica V: pastica r
402 decus surgens : decus ut
mer ingens Housman.

407 pinus : tinus Salmasius.
411 hic г.

sua pagina V: urgens Voll-
404 Sabinas V.
408 cui qui Leo.

412 firmat VгC: firma L.

it in circular form, and oft turning to service his iron spade, to dig up grassy sods from the green turf. And now his mindful care, pursuing the toil begun, heaped up a towering work, and with broad rampart the earthy mound grew into the circle he had traced. Round about this, mindful of constant care, he sets stones, fashioned from polished marble.

398 Here are to grow acanthus and the blushing rose with crimson bloom, and violets of every kind. Here are Spartan myrtle and hyacinth, and here saffron, sprung from Cilician fields, and soaring laurel, the glory of Phoebus. Here are oleander, and lilies, and rosemary, tended in familiar haunts, and the Sabine plant,1 which for men of old feigned rich frankincense; and marigold, and glistening ivy, with pale clusters, and bocchus, mindful of Libya's king.2 Here are amaranth, blooming bumastus, and everflowering laurustine. Yonder fails not the Narcissus, whose noble beauty kindled with Love's flame for his own limbs; and what flowers soever the spring seasons renew, with these the mound is strewn above. Then upon its face is placed an epitaph, which letters thus fashion with silent voice: "Little Gnat, to thee, so well deserving, the guardian of the flocks pays this service of death in return for the boon of life."

1 The savin, juniperus sabina.

This unknown plant was named from Bocchus, a king of Mauretania, probably the father-in-law of Jugurtha, though perhaps a later king of the same name.

3 cf. Georgics, II. 102.

The youth Narcissus, falling in love with his own image, as reflected in a fountain, pined away and was changed into the flower that bears his name.

D D 2


ETSI me, vario iactatum laudis amore
irritaque expertum fallacis praemia volgi,
Cecropius suavis exspirans hortulus auras
florentis viridi sophiae complectitur umbra,
ut mens curet eo dignum sibi quaerere carmen
longe aliud studium atque alios accincta labores
(altius ad magni suspexit sidera mundi

et placitum paucis ausa est ascendere collem):
non tamen absistam coeptum detexere munus,
in quo iure meas utinam requiescere Musas
et leviter blandum liceat deponere amorem.

Quod si mirificum genus o Mes<sala . . .>
(mirificum sed enim, modo sit tibi velle libido),
si me iam summa Sapientia pangeret arce,

1 vario] vano Heinsius.

auras] herbas A1. 5 ut mens Bücheler: tum mea(ea) or tu mea. quiret Bücheler: nec mens quivit Némethy.

7 suspexit Schrader: suspendit: suspensi L.
10 iure] rite Schrader: nure Heinsius.
11 amorem It.: morem.

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curet Leo:

12 Thus Vollmer, but the passage is corrupt, the close of the verse being lost, and perhaps another verse as well. Mes <sala parentum > Leo: genus omnes MSS.

13 sed enim] Valeri Némethy.

*The MSS. cited are B = Bruxellensis 10675-6 of the 12th century, containing however only ll. 454-541; Exc. (for which see introductory note to the Culex); and Z. designating a lost codex, which was the parent of the following:


TOSSED though I am, this way and that, by love of renown, and knowing full well that the fickle throng's rewards are vain; though the Attic garden,1 breathing forth sweet fragrance, enwraps me in fineflowering Wisdom's verdant shade, so that my mind is fain to go in quest of a song worthy thereof, prepared though she is for far different tasks and far different toils-she has looked aloft to the stars of the mighty firmament, and has dared to climb the hill 2 that has found favour with few-yet I will not cease to fulfil the task I have begun, wherein I pray that my Muses may find their due repose, and lightly lay aside that seductive love.

12 But if, O Messalla, thou <bearest with> a task so wondrous in kind-wondrous indeed, if only thy fancy favour it if Wisdom, exalted partner of those four heirs of olden days,3 now planted me on her

1 Referring to the garden in Athens, where Epicurus used to teach.

2 The hill of wisdom, or philosophy.

The four philosophers-Plato, Aristotle, Zeno, and Epicurus.



H: Helmstadiensis 332, of the 15th century; L = Vaticanus 3255, written by Pomponius Laetus; A Arundelianus 133 and R = Rehdigeranus 125, both of the 15th century. Ellis also cites U Urbinas 353 of the Vatican Library, a late 15th century MS. To the articles cited on p. 368 should be added Ellis, "New Suggestions on the Ciris," in American Journal of Philology, xv. (1894).


quattuor antiquis heredibus edita consors,
unde hominum errores longe lateque per orbem
despicere atque humilis possem contemnere curas;
non ego te talem venerarer munere tali,
non equidem, quamvis interdum ludere nobis
et gracilem molli libeat pede claudere versum;
sed magno intexens, si fas est dicere, peplo,
qualis Erechtheis olim portatur Athenis,
debita cum castae solvuntur vota Minervae
tardaque confecto redeunt quinquennia lustro,
cum levis alterno Zephyrus concrebruit Euro
et prono gravidum provexit pondere currum.
felix illa dies, felix et dicitur annus,
felices, qui talem annum videre diemque.
ergo Palladiae texuntur in ordine pugnae,
magna Giganteis ornantur pepla tropaeis,
horrida sanguineo pinguntur proelia cocco.
additur aurata deiectus cuspide Typhon,
qui prius, Ossaeis conscendens aethera saxis,
Emathio celsum duplicabat vertice Olympum.
Tale deae velum sollemni tempore portant;
tali te vellem, iuvenum doctissime, ritu
purpureos inter soles et candida lunae
sidera, caeruleis orbem pulsantia bigis,

31 sanguinea p. p. Gorgo Baehrens.
33 conscendens Kreunen: consternens.
34 duplicarat Baehrens.


36 velim AR.




15 edita Baehrens: est data. 17 possim possum HL. 22 quale H2. 25 concrebuit HA.

26 currum Barth: cursum.

27 ille HL.


1 The poem with which the writer would like to honour his patron is compared to the peplos, richly embroidered

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