Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Drances et Murena

Over the next fortnight I'll be posting a bit of work for my year 12 class - I imagine it will have only very limited appeal to anyone else, for which I offer my heartfelt apologies. (ir)Regular transmission will resume after the holidays.

For my year 12s - here's the first instalment:

‘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 (habet) your minds and hearts (mentes et pectora), let us call him to account (obtestamur) and let us beg (oremus) for mercy (veniam) from him (ab ipso): let him yield (cedat), let him give back (remittat) their proper right (ius proprium) to the king and to our country (regi patriaeque). How many times (quid... totiens) will you throw (proicis) your wretched citizens (miseros... civis) into open danger (in aperta pericla), O source (caput) and cause of these troubles (horum... malorum) in Latium? [There is] no salvation (nulla salus) in war (bello), we all (omnes) demand (poscimus) peace (pacem) from you (te)...’

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 (quid) [was] Murena [doing] in the mean time (interea)? He was (fuit) an officer (legatus) with Lucius Lucullus, that most brave and most wise man (fortissimo et sapientissimo viro); in which posting (qua in legatione) he led (duxit) the army (exercitum), he defeated (fudit) great forces (magnas copias) of the enemy (hostium), he captured (cepit) cities (urbes), some by force (partim vi), others by siege (partim obsidione), he passed through (obiit) Asia, filled [with wealth] and decadent (refertam et delicatam), in such a way that (sic... ut) he left (reliquerit) no trace (vestigium) of greed or luxury (neque avaritiae neque luxuriae) there (in ea), he was involved (est versatus) in the greatest war (maximo in bello) [of our times] in such a way that (sic... ut) he (hic) achieved (gesserit) many great things (multas res et magnas) without his general (sine imperatore), [but] his general (imperator) [achieved] none (nullam) without him (sine hoc).

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