Aeneid - Book IV

AoM

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Starting this soon. Though I probably won't be doing a running commentary; just posting any questions that come up.
 

AoM

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tam ficti pravique tenax quam nuntia veri (188)

There seems to be some disagreement here. The subject is Fama. Should tenax be taken with nuntia (which would then govern all three genitives), or solely with its two genitives?
 
 

Dantius

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On first reading it seems more natural to me to take "ficti pravique tenax" as one unit, describing fama, and "nuntia veri" as another, also describing fama.
 

AoM

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Yeah, it may be a case where it's better to not strictly adhere to the Latin. Compare Kline and Williams:

Kline: 'as tenacious of lies and evil, as she is messenger of truth.'

Williams: 'as persistent a messenger of what is false and distorted as of the truth.'

'Tenacious of' sounds awkward, but I guess it is poetry after all.
 
 

Dantius

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'Tenacious of' sounds awkward, but I guess it is poetry after all.
tenax does regularly take the genitive in things like this. L+S, by the way, cites this passage as an instance of tenax taking the genitive.
 

AoM

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Oh yeah, I know. edax is another.

I meant awkward in English, and the poetic license translators will employ.

--

Another thing:

venisse Aenean Troiano sanguine cretum,
cui se pulchra viro dignetur iungere Dido; (191-2)

Kline translates dignetur as 'deign', and Austin says, 'Here, Dido’s beauty is in contrast to her conduct, as Fama reports it'.

So dignetur is indeed meant as a negative (Dido lowering herself to marry Aeneas, someone who isn't from the area)?
 
 

Dantius

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If I were reading that passage that's not how I would interpret it. I would think that the sense is that Aeneas is someone of noble enough descent (troiano sanguine cretum) that Dido thinks marrying him is becoming/worthy enough of herself (L+S definition b for dignor) that she can break her vow to never remarry. I could be wrong though.
 

AoM

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Yeah, what I was thinking. But I wasn't sure about the connotation 'deign' carries, especially when a synonym is 'stoop'. Though it does seem to work if she's lowering herself in the sense of remarrying at all.
 

AoM

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_________eiectum litore, egentem
excepi et regni demens in parte locavi. (373-4)

The subject is Dido, the object Aeneas.

Conington notes: "Litore" is a local abl."

But Servius notes another possibly in addition to the above: litore egentem id est 'egentem litoris', ut "hospitio prohibemur harenae". vel si iungas 'eiectum litore', pro 'in litus', ut "inferretque deos Latio" pro 'in Latium'.

Conington comments on this: "Serv. ingeniously joins "litore egentem," comparing 1.540, "hospitio prohibemur arenae."

So should it be taken with both? Something like, 'Cast out on my shore, (a man) in need of one...'
 
 

Dantius

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si iungas 'eiectum litore', pro 'in litus', ut "inferretque deos Latio" pro 'in Latium'.
Saying that "eiectum litore" is equivalent to "eiectum in litus" seems unlikely. I've never heard of an ablative denoting motion towards something. Latio in "inferretque deos Latio" seems dative.

So should it be taken with both? Something like, 'Cast out on my shore, (a man) in need of one...'
I would personally take it with one or the other, but not both. Either "cast out on my shore, (a man) in need" or "cast out, (a man) in need of (my) shore".
 

AoM

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Thanks.

As for Servius, I think he's saying that in + acc. is the more usual construction, both with eicio and infero.
 

AoM

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Not a question, but a note from Conington on 441 that I really like.

ac velut annoso validam cum robore quercum

"Annoso validam" was restored by Heins. for the old reading annosam valido," which is less artificial, and consequently less Virgilian.

It's so true because you expect the oak itself to be annosa, not its robur. This so-called artificiality makes him a master of creating these memorable images.
 
 

Dantius

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Reminds me of "altae moenia Romae" at the very beginning. I'm pretty sure I used to mis-translate that passage in my head as "the tall walls of Rome", because that makes so much more sense.
 

AoM

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Another good one.

And then you have those editors who insist on retransferring epithets.
 
 

Dantius

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I've heard this from the beginning called a transferred epithet as well:
"saevae memorem Iunonis ob iram"
You'd expect "the savage anger of mindful Juno", but instead it's the "mindful anger of savage Juno". "mindful anger" is kind of an odd thing to say.
 

John Cook

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tam ficti pravique tenax quam nuntia veri (188)



There seems to be some disagreement here. The subject is Fama. Should tenax be taken with nuntia (which would then govern all three genitives), or solely with its two genitives?


Goodness, I suppose that I never really thought about it; I've always considered the quam as the boundary of comparison between a stubborn messenger of lies and wrong information, and a messenger of the truth, with the idea that it takes more stubbornness to keep to the false, than the truth.
 

AoM

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Unfortunate to see that the plagiarism continues in the Focus commentary.

(note for lines 538-9) "After iuvat supply eos and esse after levatos. Bene may go with memores or stat or facti; it probably affects them all, but goes strictly with the last."

Taken verbatim from Page. No changes at all. No quotation marks. No citation.

Edit: this is the case for several notes. Ridiculous, misleading, lazy, unthinkable for college professors.

Goodness, I suppose that I never really thought about it; I've always considered the quam as the boundary of comparison between a stubborn messenger of lies and wrong information, and a messenger of the truth, with the idea that it takes more stubbornness to keep to the false, than the truth.
Yeah, I think it sounds better in English to take tenax with nuntia, but I find it more poetic to stay closer to the Latin.
 

amarantas

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What moves me most in Virgil's compositions is tragic episodes about Dido, whose digamous misalliance ended up falling to the severest damnation after her transient enjoyment of cave consummation with Aeneas.
 
 

Dantius

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Unfortunate to see that the plagiarism continues in the Focus commentary.

(note for lines 538-9) "After iuvat supply eos and esse after levatos. Bene may go with memores or stat or facti; it probably affects them all, but goes strictly with the last."

Taken verbatim from Page. No changes at all. No quotation marks. No citation.
They seem to be using ancient Roman writing standards, who frequently copy phrases verbatim from their sources. :D

But yeah, that's not good.
 

AoM

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What moves me most in Virgil's compositions is tragic episodes about Dido, whose digamous misalliance ended up falling to the severest damnation after her transient enjoyment of cave consummation with Aeneas.
I think that's the crux of the issue. Aeneas saw it as temporary love (and was also told to leave by an actual deity), while Dido envisioned a lasting relationship. Book 4 is very much Dido's book.

They seem to be using ancient Roman writing standards, who frequently copy phrases verbatim from their sources. :D

But yeah, that's not good.
It's so strange because for for some notes, they'll mention Page by name, use quotation marks, put '(Page)' after a sentence or two from him. But then for others, oh, let's just take it verbatim with no citation. I really don't understand it.
 
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