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[250] Vertitur interea caelum: from Enn. A. 218. ‘Ruit,’ comes up, 6. 539., 8. 369., 10. 256. The conception of night rising from the ocean seems to be due partly to the sun's setting in the ocean (Il. 8. 485, which Macrob. 5. 5 considers the original of the present line, ἐν δ᾽ ἔπεσ᾽ ὠκεανῷ λαμπρὸν φάος ἠελίοιο Ἕλκον νύκτα μέλαιναν ἐπὶ ζείδωρον ἄρουραν), partly to the dews of night (11. 201, “nox humida donec Invertit caelum”). The rhythm from Od. 5. 294, ὀρώρει δ᾽ οὐρανόθεν νύξ.

[251] The spondees express solemnity, and so the terminations ‘umbra,’ ‘magna.

[252] Myrmidonumque dolos, because the same night which hid earth and sky was favourable to stratagem. ‘Fusi,’ 1. 214, note.

[254] The fleet was on its way when the royal ship hoisted the signal to Sinon. ‘Phalanx’ seems to mean the army, which ‘ibat instructis navibus,’ sailed in order. “Argivae phalanges,” 12. 544. “Ter denis navibus ibant,” 10. 213. So Wund. But there may also be a comparison implied between the naval array and the array of a phalanx.

[255] Silentia lunae has been understood in two opposite ways—the moon quietly shining, or there being no moon as yet; for that the moon did rise appears from .v. 340—in the one case the silence, in the other the darkness, being assumed as favourable to the undertaking. The latter view, which seems to have originated with Politian, Miscell. 100, is apparently supported by the phrase “luna silens” (explained by Milton, Samson Agonistes, “dark And silent as the moon, When she deserts the night, Hid in her vacant interlunar cave”), for instances of which see Forc.; the words however must then be understood improperly, to signify the temporary absence of the moon, unless we suppose that Virg. forgot himself in v. 340, and argue from vv. 335, 360, that the night was meant to be a dark one. On the other hand the former view is supported by all the traditions of the taking of Troy, which is expressly stated to have happened on the full moon of the seventh month, and the expression may well be a variety, as Heyne says, for “silentia noctis” (as Hor. Ep. 5. 51, quoted by Cerda, has “Nox et Diana quae silentium regis”), even if we do not go farther, and suppose Virg. to have intended the cloudless tranquillity of the moonlight, “silente caelo serenisque noctibus” (Pliny, 18. 28), to be the circumstance which befriended the Greeks. The old punctuation, which Wagn. altered, placed a comma after ‘lunae.

[257] Extulerat is rightly understood by Forb. of instantaneous action, being in fact the past tense of the quasi-present “extulit.” See on E. 1. 24, and comp. A. 10. 262, an exact parallel, where “iamque habet . . . cum extulit,” answers to ‘et iam ibat . . . cum extulerat’ here. To understand the words to mean ‘after the signal for moving had been given to the fleet,’ which is the view of most other commentators, would require, I think, according to the usage of Virg., “postquam” or “ut extulerat.” ‘Regia:’ Agamemnon's ship. The legends spoke of a signal-torch held up within the city, by Sinon, or by Antenor, who thereupon opened the horse. In 6. 517 this signal is said to have been given by Helen. ‘Fatis deum’ 6. 376, note. ‘Defensus:’ from the Trojans, who might otherwise have surprised him in his act of treachery.

[258] Danaos et claustra laxat: a zeugma; sets free the Greeks from their confinement (like “quies laxaverat artus,” 5. 857), and opens the closed doors of the horse (like “laxant arva sinusG. 2. 331, and the use of χαλᾶν in Greek, γυναικείους πύλας Μοχλοῖς χαλᾶτε, Aesch. Cho. 878). ‘Pinea,’ v. 16.

[259] Auras, open daylight, as in 4. 388, note.

[260] Od. 8. 515, ἱππόθεν ἐκχύμενοι, κοῖλον λόχον ἐκπρολιπόντες.

[261] ‘Thessandrus:’ ‘Tisandrus’ was the old reading, supported by some inferior MSS. The Greek form is Θέρσανδρος. Most of the less known names here and elsewhere are greatly varied in the different MSS. Thessander, unknown to Homer, is supposed to be identical with a son of Polynices of that name, whom other legends represented as slain by Telephus at the beginning of the war. ‘Sthenelus,’ Il. 2. 564, &c. ‘Duces,’ as coming out first. For ‘dirus’ Macrob. read ‘dius,’ which he quotes Sat. 5. 17 as a proof of Virg.'s addiction to Greek words; and so fragm. Vat. originally ‘divus.’ Others give ‘durus,’ as in v. 7 above. But it is evident that in a context like this ‘dirus’ (with which comp. “dira Celaeno” 3. 211) is far superior.

[262] Demissum lapsi per funem refers of course to all mentioned, like “oblati per lunam,” v. 340, which, as Forb. remarks, is similarly introduced. ‘Acamas,’ also unknown to Homer, son of Theseus, and brother of Demophoon. The early edd. and Charisius p. 351 have ‘Athamas,’ ‘Achamas’ Med. ‘Thoas’ Il. 2. 638, &c.

[263] Primus has not yet been satisfactorily explained, as it is weak to take it “inter primos” with Heyne; and to suppose with Henry that the man who was actually meant to come out first would be named seventh in a company of nine, is to suppose an abuse of language, though Val. Fl. 4. 224 is quoted as applying the epithet “prior” to the person mentioned last in order. If it be thought that ‘primus’ in the present connexion (which Henry compares with v. 32) can bear no other meaning than first in order, it might perhaps be better to place a colon after ‘Neoptolemus,’ and connect ‘primusque Machaou,’ &c. with ‘invadunt,’ at the risk of seeming to make a distinction without a difference between those who come out of the horse and those who rush on the city. On the other hand, it can hardly be an epithet proper to Machaon independently of the present passage, unless it be conceivable that Virg. misunderstood something in his authorities, e. g. Il. 11. 505, παῦσεν ἀριστεύοντα Μαχάονα, ποιμένα λαῶν. Possibly the word may be corrupt, though the MSS. do not appear to vary.

[264] Doli, note on v. 36. ‘Epeus’ or ‘Epius’ seems the natural Latin form of Ἐπειός (comp. “Epeum fumificum,” Plaut. ap. Varro L. L. 7, p. 324, “Epiust Pistoclerus,” Id. Bacch. 4. 9. 13, cited by Lachm. on Lucr. 3.374), though the firstclass MSS. and grammarians seem to be divided between ‘Epeos,’ ‘Epios,’ and ‘Epaeos.’ He is mentioned Il. 23. 608, in the boxing-match, and Od. 8. 493, as maker of the horse.

[265] “Vino domiti somnoque sepulti” occurs in Enn. A. 8, “morbo adfectis somnoque sepultisLucr. 1.133. Comp. A. 3. 630., 6. 424., 9. 189.

[267] Iungunt (sibi): 4. 142, “Infert se socium Aencas, atque agmina iungit.

[268-297] ‘Hector appears to me in a vision, tells me all is over, and bids me fly with the national gods of Troy, which he places in my hands.’

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