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Like 29, an attack upon Julius Caesar and his favorite Mamurra, and apparently written at about the same time with that poem, i.e. in late 55 B.C. With the sentiment cf. Mart. 8.35cum sitis similes paresque vita, uxor pessima, pessimus maritus, miror non bene convenire vobis” .—Meter, Phalaecean.

[2] Mamurrae: see Intr. 73f.

[3] nec mirum: cf. Catul. 23.7n.

[3] utrisque: found in Catullus in the plural only here and in v. 6; and in general the plural is much more common in prose than in poetry.

[4] urbana: i.e. Romana; cf. Catul. 29.23urbis” (= Romae).

[4] Formiana: cf. Catul. 41.4n.

[6] morbosi: probably merely a translation of παθικοί; cf. gloss. Labb. p. 116amorbosus παθικος´

[6] gemelli: sneeringly, of their similarity in character; cf. Hor. Ep. 1.10.3cetera paene gemelli fraternis animis” , where, however, there is no irony.

[7] lecticulo: study-couch; ἅπαξ λεγόμενον, but the feminine lecticula occurs in this sense in Suet. Aug. 78, and the masculine is not strange by analogy with lectulus (cf. Plin. Ep. 5.5.5).

[7] erudituli: Caesar was not only a historian, but a grammarian (Suet. Iul. 56; Cic. Brut. 72.253) and a poet (Suet. l.c.; Tac. Dial. 21; Plin. Ep. 5.3.5). On Mamurra's attempts at poetry see Catul. 105.1ff.

[9] rivales socii: here it appears better to take rivales in its original implication of not unfriendly rivalry, the two friends vying with each other in the number of their mistresses; v. 9 thus completes v. 8; cf. Tac. Hist. 1.13[Otho erat] gratus Neroni aemulatione luxus” .

[10] The first and last verses are identical also in Catul. 16.1ff., Catul. 36.1ff., and Catul. 52.1ff.

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  • Commentary references from this page (12):
    • Catullus, Poems, 105
    • Catullus, Poems, 16
    • Catullus, Poems, 29
    • Catullus, Poems, 36
    • Catullus, Poems, 52
    • Suetonius, Divus Augustus, 78
    • Tacitus, Historiae, 1.13
    • Tacitus, Dialogus, 21
    • Suetonius, Divus Julius, 56
    • Pliny the Younger, Epistulae, 5.3.5
    • Pliny the Younger, Epistulae, 5.5.5
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 8.35
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