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and again X. lxiii. 3, he boasts that he had twice beheld the secular games, these having been celebrated by Claudius and afterwards by Domitian after an interval of 40 years only.
Bis mea Romano spectata est vita Terento.
Statius also Sylv. IV. i. 37, alludes to the same circumstance.
mecum altera secula condes
Et tibi longævi revocabitur ara Terenti.
and again Sylv. I. iv. 17.
Nec tantum induerint fatis nova secula crimen,
Festus has the following notice.
Terentum locus in Campo Martio dictus, quod eo loco ara Ditis patris in terra occultaretur.
There is another allusion to the same subject under the word Saeculares, but the passage is so mutilated that no conclusion can be drawn from it. The locus classicus is to be found in Valerius Maximus. II. iv. 4. 5.
"Et, quia ceteri ludi, ipsis appellationibus, unde trahantur, apparet, non absurdum videtur, Sæcularibus initium suum, cuius generis minus trita notitia est, reddere. Cum ingenti pestilentia Urbs agrique vastarentur, Valesius, vir locuples, rusticæ vitæ, duobus filiis et filia ad desperationem usque medicorum laborantibus, aquam calidam iis a foco petens, genibus nixus, Lares familiares, ut puerorum periculum in ipsius caput transferrent, oravit. Orta deinde vox est, habiturum eos salvos, si continuo flumine Tiberi devectos Terentum deportasset, ibique ex Ditis patris et Proserpinæ ara petita calda recreasset. Eo prædicto magnopere confusus, quod et longa et periculosa navigatio imperabatur; spe tamen dubia præsentem metum vincente, pueros ad ripam Tiberis protinus detulit, (habitabat enim in villa sua propter vicum Sabinæ regionis Eretum), ac lintre Ostiam petens, nocte concubia ad Martium Campum appulit. Sitientibusque ægris succurrere cupiens, igne in navigio non suppetente, ex gubernatore cognoscit, haud procul apparere fumum. Et ab eo iussus egredi Terentum (id ei loco nomen est) cupide arrepto calice, aquam flumine haustam, eo unde fumus erat obortus, iam lætior pertulit, divinitus dati remedii quasi vestigia quædam in propinquo nactum se existimans : inque solo
magis fumante, quam ullas ignis habente reliquias, dum tenacius omen apprehendit, contractis levibus, et quæ fors obtulerat, nutrimentis, pertinaci spiritu flammam [evomuit] calefactamque aquam pueris bibendam dedit: qua potata, salutari quiete sopiti, diutina vi morbi repente sunt liberati; patrique indicaverunt, vidisse se in somnis, nescio a quo Deorum spongia sua corpora pertergi, et præcipi, ut ad Ditis patris et Proserpinæ aram, a qua fuerat potio ipsis allata, furvæ hostiæ immolarentur, lectisterniaque et ludi nocturni fierent. Is, quod eo loci nullam aram viderat, desiderari credens, ut a se construeretur, aram emturus in Urbem perrexit; relictis, qui, fundamentorum constituendorum gratia, terram ad solidum foderent. Hi, domini imperium exsequentes, cum ad XX. pedum altitudinem humo egesta pervenissent, animadverterunt aram Diti patri Proserpinæque inscriptam. Hoc postquam Valesius, nuntiante servo, accepit, omisso emenda aræ proposito, hostias nigras, quæ antiquitus furvæ dicebantur, Terenti immolavit: ludosque et lectisternia, continuis tribus noctibus, quia totidem filii periculo liberati erant, fecit.
Cuius exemplum Valerius Poplicola (qui primus consul fuit) studio succurrendi civibus, secutus, apud eamdem aram publice nuncupatis votis, cæsisque atris bubus, Diti maribus, feminis Proserpinæ, lectisternioque, ac ludis trinoctio factis, aram terra, ut ante fuerat, obruit." 35. (Utque erat.) See note on Tibull. I. iii. 92. p. 161.
(Immissis,) "dishevelled," "flowing over her face and shoulders," after the manner of inspired women. See note on Ov. Her. V.
114. p. 231.
38. (Pinea texta,) i. e., "the planks of the ship." Compare Met. tam. XIV. 530.
42. (Novos...deos,) i. e., Romulus and the Cæsars.
45. (Bonis avibus,) i. e., "happy omens," so Horace Epod. X. 1.
Mala soluta navis exit alite
48. (Iura...petet.) Petere iura est subiecti populi, ut dare iura imperantis. G. who compares Virg. G. IV. 561.
victorque volentes Per populos dat iura, viamque affectat Olympo.
and Hor. C. III. iii. 43.
= Roma ferox dare iura Medis.
50. (Tantum fati,) loco destinatam esse a fato tantam dignitatem. G. 51...60. She now proceeds to prophesy the arrival of Æneas, the war between Æneas and Turnus on account of Lavinia, and the death of Pallas son of Evander, the events which form the theme of the six last books of the Eneid.
57. (Neptunia Pergama,) so called because the walls were said to have been reared by Neptune and Apollo, so also Virg. Æn. II. 624.
Tum vero omne mihi visum considere in ignes
58. (Num minus, &c.) Nihilo tamen minus ex illo cinere imperium orietur, totum terrarum orbem occupans. G.
(Minus......altior.) We find a similar construction in Florus IV. 2, 47. "Sed nec minus admirabilior illius exitus belli," and in like manner magis and potius are sometimes joined with adjectives in the comparative degree, and with malo, præopto and the like. Thus Liv. IX. 7. "Obsessos primum audierunt: tristior deinde ignominiosæ pacis magis, quam periculi, nuncius fuit;" and again in Præf. "Cum bonis potius ominibus votisque ac precationibus...libentius inciperemus." So also Nepos Con. V. "Neque tamen ea non pia et probanda fuerunt, quod potius patriæ opes augeri, quam regis, maluit," and Terent. Hec. IV. i. 17.
Adeon' pervicaci esse animo, ut puerum præoptares perire,
59, 60. In reference to Æneas who bore away his father on his shoulders from the flames of Troy, and at the same time rescued the Penates and other sacred things which were transported by him to Italy. Hector, as seen by Æneas in a vision on the night when Troy was captured, thus speaks. Æ. II. 293.
Sic ait, et manibus vittas Vestamque potentem
and afterwards line 717, after they had escaped from the city, Æneas thus addresses his sire.
Tu, genitor, cape sacra manu, patriosque Penates.
and again Æ. III. 148.
Effigies sacræ divum Phrygiique Penates
Quos mecum a Troia mediisque ex ignibus urbis
With regard to these Penates, see note p. 139, and on Vesta, notes to the extract from Ov. Fast. VI. 419. p. 101.
61. 62. Both Julius Cæsar and Augustus held the office of Pontifex Maximus, and as such exercised supreme jurisdiction over all things sacred.
65. (Nepos.) These lines must have been inserted after the accession of Tiberius, which took place A.D. 14, about three years before the death of Ovid. Tiberius was the adopted son of Augustus, who was the adopted son of Julius, and hence Tiberius is called the nepos of the latter.
65. (Licet ipse recuset.) This refers to the farce played off by the arch dissembler in order that the senate might be compelled to force the empire on his acceptance. It is admirably described by Tacitus. See especially Ann. I. 11 and 12.
68. According to the last will of Augustus, "Livia in familiam Iuliam nomenque Augustæ adsumebatur." Tiberius refused to allow any additional distinction to his mother, (Tac. Ann. I. 14.) but her grandson Claudius granted her divine honours. "Aviæ Liviæ divinos honores, et Circensi pompa currum elephantorum Augusteo similem decernendum curavit."2
72. (Felix, &c.) The poet in this exclamation refers by contrast to his own dreary place of banishment.
OVID. FASTI. I. 543.
In the traditions and poetry belonging to the half-civilized state of nations we generally find that a conspicuous place is occupied by champions endowed with super-human strength and valour, who dis
1 Tacit. Ann. 1. 8. 2 Suet. Claud. XI.
tinguished themselves as the benefactors of mankind, destroying savage beasts and monsters of every description, redressing wrongs, avenging tyranny, and maintaining the cause of the virtuous and feeble against the wicked and powerful. Such individuals are sometimes represented as incarnations of divinity, sometimes as sons of a god, sometimes as mere men favoured by heaven, who open up for themselves a path to immortality. Examples of beings belonging to one or other of these classes will be found in the Rama of the Hindoos, the Roostum of the Persians, the Antar of the Bedoueens, the Odin of the Scandinavians, the Melcart of the Phoenicians, and the Hercules of the Greeks. But to our surprise we search the classics in vain for some notice of an Italian national hero, and hence we are naturally led to enquire whether their ancient records may not have recognised a personage of this description, whose fame was hidden in later times under a foreign title.
On examining the history of the son of Zeus and Alcmena we shall soon discover that the Greeks, as their geographical knowledge became extended, attributed without hesitation to their own Hercules the exploits and adventures of the mighty ones of other lands. There can be little doubt that the story of the servitude to Omphale arose from his being identified with the Lydian god Sandon, and in like manner it is certain that Hylas was invoked by the Bithynians at their fountains, during the noontide heat of summer, long before Greek colonies were planted on the shores of the Pontus.' The Phoenician Melcart, a wanderer and a conqueror, had a temple at Gadeira, and thither in the course of time Erytheia, Geryon, and his herds were transplanted;2 while Phoenician and Greek traditions were mixed up and woven together into a complicated tissue. When it was once settled that Hercules had marched through Spain nothing could be more natural than that he should return home by way of Italy and visit his countryman Evander, while at the same time it was little likely that he could perform so long a journey without an adventure. Accordingly, the local legend of the destruction of the robber Cacus, the fire-breathing son of Vulcan, who dwelt in a cavern on the Aventine, was seized upon and appropriated without opposition, it would appear, from those to whom it belonged.
We must remark, however, that it was the practice of the Romans when they became acquainted with a foreign god, to identify him with some divinity of their own, whose name was retained while he was invested with the attributes of the stranger. Thus Jupiter, Juno,
1 See Müllers Dorians Vol. I. p 457. Engl. Trans. and his essay in the Rheinisches Museum. Vol. IV. p. 22. Geryon and Erytheia seem originally to have belonged to Epirus. See Muller. Vol. I. p. 435. Engl. Traus.