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Journey to Bithynia. 29. But the first date in the life of Catullus that can be definitely fixed by t
inal rupture with
Lesbia (cf. §
24). He went to Bithynia (cc.
46.4) on the staff of
that might lead him to look with
desire upon a journey to Bithynia. In the first place, it
offered him an opportunity to vis B.C., and therefore in all probability
ruled over Bithynia in 57-56 B.C., though this fact
cannot be substantiated from other sources. Of the
journey of Catullus to Bithynia and of his stay there we
have no record up to the period of his ap there. What were the other occupations of his life in
we cannot tell. No poems remain, at any rate, to mark
blished cannot be determined.
32. Life in Bithynia was surely unsatisfactory
from a financial point of view.
E. T. Merrill, Commentary on Catullus (ed. E. T. Merrill), Later years. Relations with Caesar. (search)
A dedicatory inscription. — On the return of Catullus from Bithynia in 56 B.C. (see Intr. 33ff.) to his dearly loved home at Sirmio, he suspended as a votive offering in a shrine on his own property a model of the yacht that had brought him safely through his perils by sea, and this poem is in the form of a dedicatory inscription appended thereto. It is needless, not to say impossible, to suppose, as some have done, that the actual yacht was brought up the Po and the Mincio, or by an overland route, and beached in the Lago di Garda, but the votive model is spoken of as if the experiences of its prototype were its own. (For a strong presentation of a different interpretation of the poem cf. C. L. Smith, Harvard Studies in Classical Philology, vol. 3, p. 75.) Two other poems, Catul. 46.1 and Catul. 31.1, speak respectively of the beginning and end of the homeward journey. A