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On the authenticity of this Satire, see Introd. p. liii.
1. qualia demens Aegyptus portenta colat. Conf. Cic. de Nat. Deor. iii. 39, omne fere genus bestiarum consecrarunt Aegyptii.” Conf. also Tusc. v. 78, “Aegyptiorum morem quis ignorat ? quorum imbutae mentes pravitatis erroribus quamvis carnificinam prius subierint quam ibim aut aspidem aut faelem aut canem aut crocodilon violent.”.
2. Crocodilon adorat. Conf. Herod. ii. 69. The people round Thebes worshipped it; but those round Elephantine killed and ate it.
3. saturam serpentibus ibin. Conf. Cic. de Nat. Deor. i. 39, "ibes maximam vim serpentium conficiunt.” Herodotus, ii. 75, says that the ibis devoured the winged serpents which came from Arabia.
4. cercopitheci, long-tailed ape. Conf. Mart. xiv. 202.
5. magicae . chordae. Outside the ruins of Thebes there was (and still is) a colossal statue of Memnon, the Graecised form of Amenophis, the name of several Egyptian kings. To this king were ascribed by the Alexandrian writers the attributes as well as the name of Memnon, the son of Aurora and Tithonus, who was killed by Achilles before Troy. The statue was always believed to give forth one musical note at the dawn of each day, and Strabo, the geographer, declares that he heard it. Whether this was a trick of the priests to bring out the connection between Memnon and Aurora, or whether any scientific reason can be found for the phenomenon in the heat of the sun acting upon the chilled air in the crevices of the stone, has been much disputed. Conf. Tac. Ann. ii. 61, “Memnonis saxea effigies . . . vocalem sonum reddens" and Strab. xvii. 1, 46.
dimidio. In Juvenal's time the statue was mutilated ; it was afterwards restored by Septimius Severus. Conf. Sat. viii. 4, “dimidios Curios.”
6. centum portis. Conf. Hom. Il. ix. 381.
obruta. It had long since been in ruins, probably ever since the invasion of Cambyses. Strabo says of it, vuvi dè kwundov συνοικείται.
7. aeluros. Most MSS. have caeruleos, P. has aeruleos, but aeluros (alloúpous) is an almost certain emendation. Conf. Herod. ii. 66.
piscem fluminis. Herodotus, ii. 72, mentions the eel.
8. canem. Anubis, one of the Egyptian gods, was always represented with a dog's head.
nemo Dianam. They worship the dog, but not the mistress of the dogs, Artemis or Diana the huntress. Herodotus, however, ii. 59, identifies Diana with the Egyptian Bubastis.
9. Porrum et cepe nefas violare. Many of the Egyptians abstained from those vegetables, either because they regarded them as gods, as Pliny says, H. N. xix. 101, or because they grow when the moon is waning, as Aulus Gellius says, or because they promote thirst and tears, as Plutarch says, and so are unsuitable both to abstinence and feasts. Line 10 seems to show that Juvenal had in his mind the first reason. Conf. Herod. ii. 37.
11. Lanatis animalibus abstinet. Conf. Herod. ii. 42.
13. carnibus humanis vesci licet. Herodotus denies this, ii. 45. Diodorus, however, mentions one occasion of a famine in which the people, though they did not touch the sacred animals, did feed on one another.
15. Alcinoo. Alcinous, king of the Phaeacians, entertained Odysseus after his shipwreck, and at the feast in the evening listened to the adventures of his guest, among which was the escape from the cannibal Laestrygones and Cyclopes.
16. moverat the pluperfect, to show how quickly his listeners lost patience at his tale.
aretalogrus. The aretalogi were parasite philosophers, who entertained the company at feasts with their disquisitions op virtue or other kindred subjects. Suetonius (Aug. 74) says that Augustus used to employ them very often, "inter cenan
*17. dignum vera Charybdi, worthy to be really swallowed down. Conf. dignus vera cruce,” Sat. viii. 188.
18. Laestrygonas. Conf. note on Sat. xiv. 20; and see Hom. Od. x. 81 seq.
19. citius-sooner than the story about the cannibals. Scyllam. See Verg. Aen. iii. 684, and Hom. Od. xii. 59.
concurrentia saxa Cyaneis, “the rocks of the Cyaneae rushing together.” Cyaneis is dative ; equivalent in sense to a gen. These rocks were called Συμπληγάδες (συν πλήσσω) because they were supposed to dash against one another. They were also called Kváveal, dark blue. Homer places them in Sicily ; they are more often placed at the Bosphorus. Conf. Eur. Med. i., κυανέας Συμπληγάδας.
20. plenos tempestatibus utres. Aeolus gave the winds to Odysseus confined in a leathern bag ; his comrades however, to their own destruction, let them loose-Od. x. 19.
22. grunnisse Elpenora. Elpenor was one of the companions of Odysseus who were changed by the wand of Circe into swine. See Hom. Od. x. 552 seq.
23. populum Phaeaca. Conf. Sat. iv. 100, “Numidas ursos”; xi. 94, “in Oceano fluctu.”
24. merito, sc. dixisset. 25. Corcyraea
On urna, see note on Sat. xii. 44.
26. sub teste; so “sub iudice,” Sat. vii. 13.
27. nuper consule Iunco. According to Borghesi’s interpretation and reading of a military diploma found in Sardinia a L. Aemilius Iuncus was consul with Sex. Iulius Severus in October 127 A.D. Other MSS. have Iunio, which might be Q. Iunius Rusticus, consul in 119 A.D. nuper may imply that the Satire was written from five to ten years afterwards.
28. super . moenia=åvwtépw TÛV TELX6wv, i.e. farther up the country, farther south.
Copti. Coptos was north of Thebes and south of Tentyra. It communicated by important trade - routes with Berenice (Massowah) and Myos Hormos on the Red Sea.
29. graviora cothurnis, too horrible for tragedy. Conf. Sat. vii. 72.
30. Pyrrha, wife of Deucalion, and so a Pyrrha means “from the Deluge.” Conf. Sat. i. 81, quo Deucalion,” etc.
syrmata, the tragic robe, from cúpw. Conf. Sat. viii. 229.
33. inter finitimos. Ombi and Tentyra were, however, nearly 100 miles apart, and had no fewer than five nomes between them. Mommsen, it is true, notices that the two places are mentioned together in the list of the chorographer of Ravenna.
36. numina vicinorum odit uterque locus, e.g. the people of Ombi worshipped the crocodile; the Tentyrites killed it. Diodorus Siculus relates that the ancient kings of Egypt purposely put up religious barriers between the different people in their kingdom, in order to prevent union against themselves.
39. alterius populi, i.e. the Ombites, who were holding the feast.
43. pervigili toro, because the revel lasted all night. Conf. Sat. viii. 158.
44. septimus interdum, etc., i.e. the feast often lasted for seven consecutive days and nights.
horrida sane Aegyptus, etc. “Egypt, it is true, is uncivilised, but in profligate luxury, as far as my own observation goes, its barbarous inhabitants do not yield to the infamous
Canopus.” Egypt, being uncivilised, might be expected to be without the vices of civilisation. As a matter of fact, however, the native Egyptians are as luxurious and profligate as the Greek colonists of Canopus. For horrida used in a good sense, see Sat. x. 298, viii. 116, and vi. 10. Canopus was connected with Alexandria by a canal, on which there was a regular service of boats with all sorts of dissolute entertainments for the passengers (see Strabo, p. 801), hence the term kavwßio uós. Conf. Sat. vi. 84, “et mores urbis damnante Canopo,” even Canopus condemning the profligacy of Rome ; also i. 26.
45. quantum ipse notavi. This certainly implies that Juvenal had been to Egypt, whether as an exile or not. See Introduction, p. xxxi.
48. Inde, on the one side, i.e. among the Ombites.
49. nigro tibicine, with a black for their flute-player; abl. abs.
qualiacunque, all possible sorts of.
52. haec (i.e. iurgia) tuba rixae. Conf. Tac. Hist. i. 64, "iurgia primum, mox rixa”; and Sat. iii. 288, “prooemia rixae.'
55. toto certamine, abstr. for concr., among all the combatants.” Conf. note on “spectacula,” Sat. xi. 193.
57. alias facies, disfigured features.
61. quo tot milia. On quo followed by an accusative, see note to Sat. viii. 9.
64. domestica, “appropriate to,” “natural to”; perhaps a translation of the Greek oikeios. Conf. Verg. Aen. i. 150, ‘iamque faces et saxa volant.”
65. nec hunc lapidem, quales — constructio ad sensum. hunc has a generalising force. In line 67 it returns to the sing., “ sed quem.
Turnus. Conf. Verg. Aen. xii. 896 seq. Aiax. Hom. Il. vii. 268.
66. vel quo pondere=vel hoc pondus quo. pondere is attracted into the case of the relative. Tydides. Il. v. 304.
67. dextrae illis dissimiles, person compared with thing. Conf. note on “Isaeo torrentior,” Sat. iii. 73.
69. vivo iam decrescebat Homero. Conf. Hom. 11. i. 271, where Nestor says, κείνοισι δ' αν ούτις τών οι νυν βροτοί εισιν επιχθόνιοι μαχέοιτο.”
72. deverticulo, digression, which begins at line 64.
postquam subsidiis aucti, etc. 66 After that the one side (i.e. the Ombites) strengthened by reinforcements dares to draw the sword, and to renew the battle with hostile arrows, pressing hard upon all those who inhabit Tentyra adjoining the shady palm-trees, as they turn their backs in swift flight; one on this side (i.e. the Tentyrites),” etc. instans agrees with pars altera; qui vicina colunt goes closely with omnibus ; and labitur is the principal verb of the sentence. Bücheler puts a full stop at palmae, making audet the principa) verb, and supplying sunt with aucti. The common reading, adopted by Prof. Mayor in his Third Edition, praestant instantibus Ombis,” is a conjecture only, not supported by MS. authority, and Ombis for Ombitis is a fatal objection to it. The reading in the text is that of the second hand in P., the first hand being wanting after “praestan . . The sentence is awkward and cumbrous, but not ungrammatical.
77. hinc, on this side, i.e. from among the Tentyrites. 81. victrix turba, the Ombites.
82. aut verubus. decoxit which means “ boiled,” only goes with this by zeugma ; understand “roasted.”
84. Hic gaudere libet, an extremely awkward digression. 85. Prometheus. Conf. Sat. iv. 133.
Juvenal has generally referred to him either as a potter or as the creator of mankind.
86. elemento, i.e. the fire. Conf. “elementa per omnia,” Sat. xi. 14.
et te, a harsh translation from Volusius Bithynicus to Fire.
88. sustinuit, “has once had the heart.” Conf. Sat. xiv. 127.
89. “For in so horrid a crime, lest you should doubt and inquire whether even the first cannibal (i.e. when excitement was at its height) felt any pleasure, I say even he who stood last, when the whole body was consumed, draws his fingers along the ground, and gets a taste of the blood.” Juvenal is anxious to show that the crime was no exceptional deed of horror, wrought in the height of passion, but a habitual outrage, committed in cold blood by one after another and delighted in.
93. Vascones. The allusion is to the siege of Calagurris, belonging to the Vascones, who lived between the Ebro and the Pyrenees. The town had belonged to Sertorius, and was besieged by Pompeius and Metellus Pius. The defence was most obstinate, and Valerius Maximus, vii. 6, records the cannibalism mentioned by Juvenal (72 B.C.)
95. bellorum ultima, the extremities of war. Conf. Sat. xii. 55.