Sunday, August 30, 2009

Drances et Murena

Over the next couple of weeks, as I have opportunity I will be posting some sample answers for the trial paper my year 12 students sat recently. This might be a bit boring for regular readers, but I hope that someone out there might find it a helpful resource.

To start with here are the two unseen passages I set for translation:

At a meeting of the Latin leaders, Drances attacks Turnus, urging him to give up his claim to Lavinia, and speaks in favour of ending the war with the Trojans.

‘quod si tantus habet mentes et pectora terror,
ipsum obtestemur veniamque oremus ab ipso:
cedat, ius proprium regi patriaeque remittat.
quid miseros totiens in aperta pericula civis
proicis, o Latio caput horum et causa malorum?
nulla salus bello, pacem te poscimus omnes...’

‘But (quod) if such great terror (tantus... terror) holds your minds and hearts, let us call him to account (obtestamur) and let us beg (oremus) for mercy (veniam) from him: let him yield (cedat), let him give back their proper right (ius proprium) to the king and to our country. How many times (quid... totiens)will you throw your wretched citizens (miseros... civis) into open danger, O source (caput) and cause of these troubles (horum... malorum) in Latium? [There is] no salvation in war, we all demand peace from you...’

(Virgil, Aeneid XI, 357-362)

Cicero tells the court how his client Murena spent his quaestorship in the province of Asia under the command of the general Lucius Lucullus.

Quid Murena interea? Fortissimo et sapientissimo viro, legatus, L. Lucullo, fuit; qua in legatione duxit exercitum, magnas copias hostium fudit, urbes partim vi, partim obsidione cepit, Asiam refertam et delicatam sic obiit ut in ea neque avaritiae neque luxuriae vestigium reliquerit, maximo in bello sic est versatus ut hic multas res et magnas sine imperatore gesserit, nullam sine hoc imperator.

What [was] Murena [doing] in the mean time? He was an officer (legatus) with Lucius Lucullus, that most brave and most wise man; in which posting (qua in legatione) he led the army, he defeated (fudit) great forces (magnas copias) of the enemy, he captured cities, some by force, others by siege, he passed through Asia, filled [with wealth] and decadent (refertam et delicatam), in such a way that (sic... ut) he left no trace of greed or luxury there (in ea), he was involved (est versatus) in the greatest war [of our times] in such a way that (sic... ut) he (hic) achieved (gesserit) many great things without his general, [but] his general [achieved] none without him (sine hoc).

(Cicero, Pro Murena, 20)


Mike Salter said...

Great choices for unseens, if I may say so. Just the right standard!

Might email you through a similar breakdown of my trial unseens in the next few days JM...feel free to use with your guys.

jm said...

thanks, i tried to choose passages which were comprehensible, but had some interesting grammar (eg iussive subjunctives).

anything you've got for me is always most welcome.