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M. Annaeus Lucanus, Pharsalia (ed. Sir Edward Ridley), book 1, line 158 (search)
ll-known signs and eagles shone,
And Caesar towering o'er the throng was seen,
They shook for terror, fear possessed their limbs,
And thoughts unuttered stirred within their souls.
O miserable those to whom their home
Denies the peace that all men else enjoy!
Placed as we are beside the Northern bounds
And scarce a footstep from the restless Gaul,
We fall the first; would that our lot had been
Beneath the Eastern sky, or frozen North,
To lead a wandering life, rather than keep
' The gates of Latium. Brennus sacked the town
' And Hannibal, and all the Teuton hosts.
' This is the path when Rome's the prize of war.'
Deep in their breasts they breathed the silent moan;
But dared not speak their sorrow nor their fear.
As when in winter all the fields are still,
And birds are voiceless, and no murmured sound
Breaks on the silence of the central sea;
So deep the stillness. But when through the shades
The day had broken, lo! the torch of war!
For by the hand of Fate is swift dispersed
M. Annaeus Lucanus, Pharsalia (ed. Sir Edward Ridley), book 2, line 67 (search)
''Twere scarce believed that one poor mortal frame
' Such agonies could bear ere death should come.
' Thus crushed beneath some ruin lie the dead;
' Thus shapeless from the deep are borne the drowned.
' Why spoil delight by mutilating thus,
' The head of Marius? To please Sulla's heart
' That mangled visage must be known to all.
' Fortune, high goddess of Praeneste's fane,
' Saw all her townsmen hurried to their deaths
' In one fell instant. All the hope of Rome,
' The flower of Latium, stained with blood the field
' Where once the peaceful tribes their votes declared.
' Famine and Sword, the raging sky and sea,
' And Earth upheaved, have laid such numbers low :
' But ne'er one man's revenge. Between the slain
' And living victims there was space no more,
' Death thus let slip, to deal the fatal blow.
' Hardly when struck they fell; the severed head
' Scarce toppled from the shoulders; but the slain
' Blent in a weighty pile of massacre
' Pressed out the life and helped th
M. Annaeus Lucanus, Pharsalia (ed. Sir Edward Ridley), book 2, line 326 (search)
But on the right hand Tiber has his source,
Deep-flowing Rutuba, Vulturnus swift,
And Sarnus breathing vapours of the nightSarnus, site of the battle in which Narses defeated Teias, the last of the Ostrogoths, in 553 A.D.
Rise there, and Liris with Vestinian wave
Still gliding through Marica's shady grove,
And Siler flowing through Salernian meads:
And Macra's swift unnavigable stream
Near Luna rests in Ocean. On the Alps
Whose spurs strike plainwards, and on fields of Gaul
The cloudy heights of Apennine look down
In further distance: on his nearer slopes
The Sabine turns the ploughshare; Umbrian kine
And Marsian fatten; with his pineclad rocks
He girds the tribes of Latium, nor leaves
Hesperia's soil until the waves that beat
On Scylla's cave compel. His southern spurs
Extend to Juno's temple, and of old
Stretched further than Italia, till the main
O'erstepped his limits and the lands repelled.
But, when the seas were joined, Pelorus claimed
His latest summits for Sicilia's isle.
M. Annaeus Lucanus, Pharsalia (ed. Sir Edward Ridley), book 5, line 374 (search)
were the birds
Propitious sworn. Then was the ancient name
Degraded first; and monthly Consuls,In the time of the Empire, the degraded Consulship, preserved only as a name, was frequently transferred at monthly, or even shorter, intervals from one favourite to another. now
Shorn of their rank, were chosen to mark the years.
And Trojan Alba's Caesar performed the solemn rites of the great Latin festival on the Alban Mount during his Dictatorship. (Compare Book VII., line 471.) god (since Latium's fall
Deserving not) beheld the wonted fires
Blaze from his altars on the festal night.
Then through Apulia's fallows, which her hinds
Left all untilled, to sluggish weeds a prey
Passed Caesar onward, swifter than the fire
Of heaven, or tigress dam: until he reached
Brundusium's winding ramparts, built of old
By Cretan colonists. There icy winds
Constrained the billows, and his trembling fleet
Feared for the winter storms nor dared the main.
But Caesar's soul burned at the moments lost
M. Annaeus Lucanus, Pharsalia (ed. Sir Edward Ridley), book 9, line 938 (search)
id this gift.
Such were the fit return. Why did he draw
His separate sword, and in the toil that's ours
Mingle his weapons? In Thessalia's field
Gave we such right to the Pellaean blade?
Such licence did your mutual kingdom gain?
Magnus as partner in the rule of Rome
I had not brooked; and shall I tolerate
Thee, Ptolemaeus? In vain with civil wars
Thus have we roused the nations, if there be
Now any might but Caesar's, if any land
Yet owns you masters. From your shore I'd turn
The prows of Latium; but fame forbids,
Lest men should whisper that I did not damn
This deed of blood, but feared the Pharian land.
Nor think ye to deceive; victorious here
I stand: else had my welcome at your hands
Been that of Magnus; and that neck were mine
But for Pharsalia's chance. At greater risk
So seems it, than we dreamed of, took we arms;
Exile, and Magnus' threats, and Rome I knew,
Not Ptolemaeus. But we spare the boy:
Pass by the murder. Let the princeling know
We give no more than pardon for his
M. Annaeus Lucanus, Pharsalia (ed. Sir Edward Ridley), book 10, line 1 (search)
But towards the rising of the sun, we yield
To him who kept the Arsacids in awe;
And puny Pella held as province sure
The Parthia fatal to our Roman arms.
Now from the stream Pelusian of the Nile,
Was come the boyish king, taming the rage
Of his effeminate people: pledge of peace;
And Caesar safely trod Pellean halls;
When Cleopatra bribed her guard to break
The harbour chains, and borne in little boat
Within the Macedonian palace gates,
Caesar unknowing, entered: Egypt's shame;
Fury of Latium; to the bane of Rome
Unchaste. For as the Spartan queen of yore
By fatal beauty Argos urged to strife
And Ilium's homes, so Cleopatra roused
Italia's frenzy. By her drum The kettledrum used in the worship of Isis. (See Book VIII., line 975.) she called
Down on the Capitol terror (if to speak
Such word be lawful); mixed with Roman arms
Coward Canopus, hoping she might lead
A Pharian triumph, Caesar in her train;
And 'twas in doubt upon Leucadian At the Battle of Actium. The island of Leucas,