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Exoecratur lenam, quae puellam suam meretricia arte instituebat

There is, who ere will knowe a bawde aright
Give eare, there is an old trot Dipsas hight.
Her name comes from the thing: she being wise,
Sees not the morne on rosie horses rise.
She magick arts and Thessale charmes doth know,
And makes large streams back to their fountaines flow,
She knows with gras, with thrids on wrong wheeles spun
And what with Mares ranck humour may be done.
When she will, cloudes the darckned heav'n obscure,
When she will, day shines every where most pure.
(If I have faith) I sawe the starres drop bloud,
The purple moone with sanguine visage stood.
Her I suspect among nights spirits to fly,
And her old body in birdes plumes to lie.
Fame saith as I suspect, and in her eyes
Two eye-balles shine, and double light thence flies.
Great grand-sires from their antient graves she chides
And with long charmes the solide earth divides.
She drawes chast women to incontinence,
Nor doth her tongue want harmefull eloquence.
By chaunce I heard her talke, these words she sayd
While closely hid betwixt two dores I layed.
Mistris thou knowest, thou hast a blest youth pleas'd,
He staide, and on thy lookes his gazes seaz'd.
And why shouldst not please? none thy face exceedes,
Aye me, thy body hath no worthy weedes.
As thou art faire, would thou wert fortunate,
Wert thou rich, poore should not be my state.
Th'opposed starre of Mars hath done thee harme,
Now Mars is gone: Venus thy side doth warme,
And brings good fortune, a rich lover plants
His love on thee, and can supply thy wants.
Such is his forme as may with thine compare,
Would he not buy thee thou for him shouldst care.
She blusht: red shame becomes white cheekes, but this
If feigned, doth well; if true it doth amisse.
When on thy lappe thine eyes thou dost deject,
Each one according to his gifts respect.
Perhaps theSabines rude, when Tatius raignde,
To yeeld their love to more then one disdainde.
NowMars doth rage abroad without all pitty,
AndVenus rules in her AeneasCitty.
Faire women play, shee's chast whom none will have,
Or, but for bashfulnesse her selfe would crave.
Shake off these wrinckles that thy front assault,
Wrinckles in beauty is a grievous fault.
Penelope in bowes her youths strength tride,
Of horne the bowe was uthat approv'd their side.
Time flying slides hence closely, and deceaves us,
And with swift horses the swift yeare soone leaves us.
Brasse shines with use; good garments would be worne,
Houses not dwelt in, are with filth forlorne.
Beauty not exercisde with age is spent,
Nor one or two men are sufficient.
Many to rob is more sure, and lesse hateflill,
From dog-kept flocks come preys to woolves most gratefull.
Behold what gives the Poet but new verses?
And thereof many thousand he rehearses.
The Poets God arayed in robes of gold,
Of his gilt Harpe the well tun'd strings doth hold.
LetHomer yeeld to such as presents bring,
(Trust me) to give, it is a witty thing.
Nor, so thou maist obtaine a wealthy prize,
The vaine name of inferiour slaves despize.
Nor let the arrnes of antient lines beguile thee,
Poore lover with thy gransires I exile thee.
Who seekes, for being faire, a night to have,
What he will give, with greater instance crave.
Make a small price, while thou thy nets doest lay,
Least they should fly, being tane, the tirant play.
Dissemble so, as lov'd he may be thought,
And take heed least he gets that love for nought.
Deny him oft, feigne now thy head doth ake:
AndIsis now will shew what scuse to make.
Receive him soone, least patient use he gaine,
Or least his love oft beaten backe should waine.
To beggers shut, to bringers ope thy gate,
Let him within heare bard out lovers prate.
And as first wrongd the wronged some-times banish,
Thy fault with his fault so repuls'd will vanish.
But never give a spatious time to ire,
Anger delaide doth oft to hate retire.
And let thine eyes constrained learne to weepe,
That this, or that man may thy cheekes moist keepe.
Nor, if thou couzenst one, dread to for-sweare,
,, Venus to mockt men lendes a sencelesse eare.
Servants fit for thy purpose thou must hire
To teach thy lover, what thy thoughts desire.
Let them aske some-what, many asking little,
Within a while great heapes grow of a tittle.
And sister, Nurse, and mother spare him not,
By many hands great wealth is quickly got.
When causes fale thee to require a gift,
By keeping of thy birth make but a shift.
Beware least he unrival'd loves secure,
Take strife away, love doth not well endure.
On all the bed mens tumbling let him viewe
And thy neck with lascivious markes made blew.
Chiefely shew him the gifts, which others send:
If he gives nothing, let him from thee wend.
When thou hast so much as he gives no more,
Pray him to lend what thou maist nere restore.
Let thy tongue flatter, while thy minde harme-workes:
Under sweete hony deadly poison lurkes.
If this thou doest, to me by long use knowne,
Nor let my words be with the windes hence blowne,
Oft thou wilt say, live well, thou wilt pray oft,
That my dead bones may in their grave lie soft.
As thus she spake, my shadow me betraide,
With much a do my hands I scarsely staide.
But her bleare eyes, balde scalpes thin hoary flieces
And riveld cheekes I would have puld a pieces.
The gods send thee no house, a poore old age,
Perpetuall thirst, and winters lasting rage.

load focus Latin (R. Ehwald, 1907)
load focus English (various, 1855)
hide References (6 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (4):
    • E. T. Merrill, Commentary on Catullus, 5
    • E. T. Merrill, Commentary on Catullus, 68b
    • John Conington, Commentary on Vergil's Aeneid, Volume 1, 2.196
    • Sulpicia, Carmina Omnia, 6
  • Cross-references to this page (2):
    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), SERVUS
    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), TURBO
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