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Hic velut in niveo tenera est cum primitus ovo 490 effigies animantis et internodia membris imperfecta novo fluitant concreta calore, sic liquido Scyllae circumfusum aequore corpus semiferi incertis etiam nunc partibus artus undique mutabant atque undique mutabantur. oris honos primum et multis optata labella et patulae frontis species concrescere in unum coepere et gracili mentum producere rostro; tum qua se medium capitis discrimen agebat, ecce repente, velut patrios imitatus honores, puniceam concussit apex in vertice cristam; at mollis varios intexens pluma colores marmoreum volucri vestivit tegmine corpus lentaque perpetuas fuderunt bracchia pinnas. inde alias partes minioque infecta rubenti crura nova macies obduxit squalida pelle et pedibus teneris unguis adfixit acutos. et tamen hoc demum miserae succurrere pacto vix fuerat placida Neptuni coniuge dignum. numquam illam post haec oculi videre suorum purpureas flavo retinentem vertice vittas, non thalamus Syrio fragrans accepit amomo, nullae illam sedes: quid enim cum sedibus illi ? quae simul ut sese cano de gurgite velox cum sonitu ad caelum stridentibus extulit alis et multum late dispersit in aequora rorem, infelix virgo nequiquam a morte recepta incultum solis in rupibus exigit aevum, rupibus et scopulis et litoribus desertis.

491 animantur BHL.
503 mansurum A2L.
506 novamque acies (-em).
512 Syrio Ascensius: Tyrio.
513 cum Heinsius: iam.

501 purpuream A2L.

pellem (pellis).

517 a Aldine edition 1534: omitted in MSS.




509 placide.

490 Hereon, as when at first in a snowy egg there is the soft outline of a living thing, and the limbs' imperfect junctures, as they grow together in unwonted heat, float about, yet incomplete; so with Scylla's body, encompassed by the waters of the deep, while the parts were even yet uncertain, the half-human joints were changing it throughout, and throughout were being changed. First, the lovely face and those lips yearned for by many, and the broad brow's charm, began to grow together and to prolong the chin with a slender beak. Then, where on the head the line appeared that parts the hair in equal portions, lo! of a sudden, as if copying her sire's glory, on her crown a tuft waved its crimson crest, while soft plumes, blending varied hues, clothed her marble-white body with vesture of wings, and the feeble arms put forth long feathers. Then other parts and the legs, coloured with blushing crimson, an unfamiliar leanness overlaid with rough skin, and to the tender feet fastened sharp nails. And yet to succour the hapless maiden in this manner only was scarce worthy of Neptune's gentle spouse. Never hereafter did the eyes of her kin behold her tying back her purple fillets upon her golden head; no chamber, fragrant with Syrian spice, no home welcomed her; what, indeed, had she to do with home? And soon as from the hoary tide with speed and uproar she arose to the sky on whirring wings, and far and wide has scattered a cloud of spray o'er the waters, the hapless maid, vainly recovered from death, lives her wild life among the lonely rocksthe rocks and cliffs and deserted shores.


Nec tamen hoc ipsum poena sine: namque deum rex, omnia qui imperio terrarum milia versat, commotus talem ad superos volitare puellam, cum pater exstinctus caeca sub nocte lateret, illi pro pietate sua (nam saepe nitentum sanguine taurorum supplex resperserat aras, saepe deum largo decorarat munere sedes) reddidit optatam mutato corpore vitam fecitque in terris haliaeetos ales ut esset:


quippe aquilis semper gaudet deus ille coruscis.

huic vero miserae, quoniam damnata deorum


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quacumque illa levem fugiens secat aethera pinnis,
ecce inimicus, atrox, magno stridore per auras
insequitur Nisus; qua se fert Nisus ad auras,
illa levem fugiens raptim secat aethera pinnis.


520 ipsum B2: iterum BAR (explained by Vollmer as referring to her sufferings after the metamorphosis).

522 superos] celum B1.

524 nitentum edition of 1507: videmus: vigentum Ellis. 525 respexerat BH1. auras BHLA.

526 longo decoravit AR. sedem A1. 529 aquilis] aliis B1: aliquis HA1R.


531 fatique E. B. Greene: patrisque Heyne: patriaeque Sillig: pactique (=plighted) Ellis: natique.

533 lumine Schrader.

534 stellatum Juntine edition: stellarum.

535 fugat B: fugant.

538 aera AR.

537 facto.


aera AR.

520 Yet even this not without penalty: for the king of the gods, who with his power sways all regions of the world, being grieved that a maid so wicked should be flitting to the world above, while under dark night's cover her father's light was quenched, unto him by reason of his piety (for oft with the blood of sleek bulls had he suppliantly besprinkled the altars, and oft with lavish gifts had he adorned the homes of the gods) granted under changed form the life he had craved, and suffered him to be on earth a winged sea-eagle, for in lightning-swift eagles that god ever delights. But upon that unhappy maid, since she had first been condemned by judgment of the gods, of fate and of her husband, he laid an angry father's relentless hate. For even as, amid the grandeur of heaven's constellations, the glorious Scorpion, which alone I have seen bestarred with two-fold brilliance, puts to rout in alternate strife the gleaming Orion: so the sea-eagle and the Ciris, with ever remindful fate, maintain the fierceness of mutual wrath from age to age. Wherever she flees,

cleaving the light air with her wings, lo! savage and ruthless, with loud whirr Nisus follows through the sky; where Nisus mounts skyward, she flees in haste, cleaving the light air with her wings.2

1 Minos was the coniunx (to be) of Scylla.
2 Lines 538-541 = Georgics, 1. 406-9.


COPA Surisca, caput Graeca redimita mitella, crispum sub crotalo docta movere latus, ebria fumosa saltat lasciva taberna,

ad cubitum raucos excutiens calamos:
"quid iuvat aestivo defessum pulvere abesse ?
quam potius bibulo decubuisse toro?

sunt topia et kalybae, cyathi, rosa, tibia, chordae,
et triclia umbrosis frigida harundinibus.
en et Maenalio quae garrit dulce sub antro
rustica pastoris fistula in ore sonat.
est et vappa, cado nuper defusa picato,

et strepitans rauco murmure rivus aquae. sunt et cum croceo violae de flore corollae

sertaque purpurea lutea mixta rosa et quae virgineo libata Achelois ab amne lilia vimineis attulit in calathis. sunt et caseoli, quos iuncea fiscina siccat, sunt autumnali cerea pruna die castaneaeque nuces et suave rubentia mala, est hic munda Ceres, est Amor, est Bromius.

3 fumosa M: famosa SFL.





kalybae (= kaλúßα) Reichenbach: MSS. have kalibes,

calybes, chalybes, or calices.

10 in ore SFL: more M.

13 et cum croceo Leo: etiam croceo.

* For the MSS. see the opening note on the Dirae.

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