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The propitious eye of Melpomene upon the natal hour makes of the poet a dedicated spirit who has no part in the labors, ambitions, and rewards of ordinary men. Such a spirit Rome now recognizes in Horace, the voice of Envy is silenced, and the poet thanks the sweet Muse to whom he owes his inspiration and power to please.

The poem celebrates the realization of the aspirations of 1.1.

Cf. Sellar, p.190; Andrew Lang's pretty Ballade of the Muse; Ronsard, A sa Lyre. There is a good translation by Bishop Atterbury. Cf. also Pitt, Johnson's Poets, 12.388.

Quem . . . videris: him upon whose birth thou, Melpomene, once hast looked with eyes of favor.--Melpomene: Cf. 3.30.16. n.--semel: 1. 24.16; C. S. 26. nascentem . . . videris: not astrological, as adspicit (2. 17. 17). Cf. Hes. Theog. 82; Pind. O.7.11; Boileau, A. P.1; Lessing, To his brother, 'Auch dich hat, da du wardst geboren, Die Muse lächelnd angeblickt.'

Isthmius: typical, as Olympicum (1.1.3), Elea (4.2.17). --labor: πόνος (Pind. O.5.15, et passim). Cf. 4.2.18.

pugilem: as a pugilist.

Achaico: simply Greek. The glory of the Greek chariot race is compared with the grandeur of a Roman triumph.

res bellica: achievement in war; cf. res ludicra, comedy Epp. 2.1.180).--Deliis: of Apollo. Cf. 4.2.9; 3.30.15. A branch of laurel was borne by the triumphator. Cf. F. Q. 1.1.9.

regum . . . minas: cf. 2.12.12.--tumidas: Sat. 1.7.7. contuderit: has crushed; cf. 3.6.10; Verg. Aen. 1.263 ; Cons. ad Liv. 17, Ille genus Suevos acre indomitosque Sicambros |contudit inque fugam barbara terga dedit.

ostendet Capitolio: cf. on 4.2.35, and Propert. 4.3.13.

Tibur: his own favorite retirement put typically for the Muse's 'green retreats.' Cf. on 1.1.30; 1.7.13 sqq. --praefluunt: flow past; so 4.14.26 for praeterfluunt.

spissae: 3.19. 25.--nemorum comae: cf. on 1.21. 5; 4.7.2.--fingent . . . nobilem: will make him famous. --Aeolio: 3.30.13.

Cf. 4.14.44; Epp. 1.7.44, regia Roma.

suboles: the children, i.e. the people.

ponere: cf. inserere (1.1.35); ponetur (Epp. 2. 1.43).

dente: cf. Epode 6.15; Sat. 1.6.46, quem rodunt omnes; Sat. 2.1.77; Epist. 2.1.151; Pindar, Pyth. 2.53; Ov. Trist. 4. 10.123; ex Ponto, 3.4.74; Phaedr. Prol. 5; Martial, 5.28.7: Anth. Pal. 9.356; 16.265. 5; Shaks. Jul. Caes. 2.3. 'My heart laments that virtue cannot live | Out of the teeth of emulation'; Gray, Eton College, 'Or jealousy with rankling tooth.'

testudinis: 3.11.3; 1.32.14. --aurea: cf. on 2.13.26; Pind. Pyth. 1.1, χρυσέα φόρμιγξ.

dulcem: with strepitum, a slight oxymoron. Or it is conceivably proleptic.--strepitum: Epp. 1.2.31; βοάν, Pind. O. 3.8; Pyth. 1.13; Nem. 5.38; Homer, Il.18.495; γλυκὺν αὐλῶν ὄτοβον (Soph. Ajax, 1202); 'How they seemed to fill the sea and air |With their sweet jargoning' (Col. Anc. Mar.) ; 'La noise du rossignol' (Ronsard) ; 'That melodious noise' (Milton, At a Solemn Music) ; 'For all their groves, which with the heavenly noises |Of their sweet instruments were wont to sound' (Spenser, Tears of the Muses).--Pieri: Muse of Pieria. A Muse is called Pieris as here, and more frequently the Muses are called Pierides, from Pieria, a region of Macedonia connected with their cult.--temperas: dost govern, modulate. Cf. on 1.24. 14, moderere; Propert. 3.32.80.

mutis: traditional epithet. Cf. ἔλλοπες, ἐλλοί, ἄναυδοι, in Greek Lex. The scarus was thought the only exception. Cf. Anth. Pal. 10.16.13; Oppian, Hal. 1.134. But the trout of the river Aroanius in Arcadia were believed to sing (Pausan. 8. 21.2). ἰχθύων ἀφων́τεροιwas a proverb. Cf. Troilus and Cress. 3.3, 'He is grown a very land-fish, languageless'; Shelley, Helias, 'Joy waked the voiceless people of the sea'; Swinb. Erech,, 'tongueless waterherds.' After Aeschyl. Persae; 577. --quoque: even.

donatura: who couldst give; cf. on 2.3.4.cycni: cȳcnum (4.2.25). For swan's song, cf. 2.20.15; Plato, Phaedo, 84. E; Aeschyl. Ag. 1445; Ov. Her. 7.1; Callim. Hymn. Del. 252; Wordsworth's Sonnet, 'I heard (alas! 'twas only in a dream)'; Byron, 'There, swan-like, let me sing and die' (Don Juan, 3.86.16); Shaks. Merch. of V.3.2; King John, 5.7; Othello, 5.2; Hale's Folia Literaria, p.231 sqq . Ael . Var. Hist. 1. 14, ἐγὼ δὲ ᾁδοντος κύκνου οὐκ ἄκουσα, ἴσως δὲ οὐδὲ ἄλλος. πεπίστευται δ᾽ οὖν ὅτι ᾀδει Frazer, Paus. 2.395.

totum . . tuist: this is wholly thy gift, predicative genitive. Cf. Ov. (Trist. 1.6.6) to his wife, siquid adhuc ego sum, muneris omne tui est.

Proverbial. Cf. Pers. 1.28; Lucian, Herod. 1, Somnium 11; Aeschyl. Ag. 1332; Tac. Dial, 7; Martial, 9.97.3; Cic. Tusc. 5.36, etc. Sometimes it signifies finger of scorn (Ov. Am, 3.1.19).

fidicen is Latin (cf. Epp. 1.19.32); lyrae: Greek (cf. 4. 6.25-27).

quod spiro: that I have inspiration; cf. 2.16.38,4,6.29 ; Epp. 2.1.166; Pind. O.13.22, Μοῖσ᾽ ἁδύπνοος; Ronsard, A Ba Lyre, 'Par toy je plais, et par toy je suis leu: c'est toy qui fais que Ronsard soit esleu Harpeur Francois, et quand on le rencontre, Qu'avec le doigt par la rue on le monstre,' etc. --tuum est: but cf. 4.6.29, Apollo; 2.16.39, Parca; 3.30.15, meritis.

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