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C O N T E N T S. 

Mr. Spence on the Political Character of the Aeneid - Introduction. 


Mr. Holdssvorth's Observations on the Four Georgics 

and First Six Books of the Aeneid ----- l — 225 

Bishop Warburton's Examination of Aeneid VI. - - 229 — 270 

Dr. Jortin's Observations on Virgil ----- 271 — 308 



Vol. I. Page 17. 


The first age was only as the dawning of the Roman Poetry, 
in comparison of the clear full light that opened all at once 
afterwards, under Augustus Caesar. The state, which had 
been so long tending towards a monarchy, was quite settled 
down to that form by this prince. When he had no longer 
any dangerous opponents, he grew mild ; or, at least, con- 
cealed the cruelty of his temper. He gave peace and quiet 
to the people that were fallen into his hands ; and looked kindly 
on the imjDrovement of all the arts and elegancies of life among 
them. He had a minister, too, under him, who (though a very 
bad writer himself ) knew how to encourage the best : and who 
admitted the best poets, in particular, into a very great share 
of friendship and intimacy with him. Virgil was one of the 
foremost in this list ; who at his first setting out grew x soon 


1 Phyllidis hic idem tenerosque Ama- I should take " molle" here, to be 

ryllidis ignes meant of the sweetness of Virgil's ver- 

Bucolicis juvenis luserat ante modis. sification in his pastorals: and " face- 

Ovid. Trist. L. 2. v. 538. tum," of the elegance of his style and 

Forte epos acer maimer of **_**?$• £11 writers of pas- 

* __ tf\rn c m __ v r\& Hunrl_iH _'n#_-. tnrA . ■ -. _ c _ . _ * 

Ut nemo Varius ducit : molle alque * orals m ^ bedivided into tvvo classes; 

facetum rural, and the rustic ; or, if you 

Virgilio annuerunt gaudentes rure ^i", the genteel and the homel.^ This 

Camoenae character ot facetus marks out V lrgu s 

Hor. L. I. Sa. . 10. v. 45. excelK Dg in the genteel pastoral. 


their most applauded writer for genteel pastorals ; then gave 
them the most beautiful and most correct poem that ever was 
wrote in the Roman language, in his rules of agriculture (so 
beautiful, that 2 some of the antients seem to accuse Virgil of 
having studied beauty too much in that piece) : and last of all 
undertook a political poem, in support of the new establishment. 
I have thought this to be the intent of the Aeneid, ever since I 
first read Bossu ; and the more one considers it, the more I 
think one is confirmed in that opinion. Virgil is 3 said to have 
begun this poem the very year that Augustus was free from his 
great rival, Antony : the government of the Roman empire 
was to be wholly in him ; and though he chose to be called 
their Father 4 , he was, in every thing but the naroe, their King. 
This monarchical form of government must naturally be apt to 
displease the people. Virgil seems to have laid the plan of 
his poem to reconcile them to it. He takes advantage of this 
religious turn, and of some old 5 prophecies that must have been 
very flattering to the Roman people, as promising them the 
empire of the whole world. He weaves this in with the most 
6 probable account of their origin ; that of their being descended 
from the Trojans. To be a little more particular ; Virgil, in 
his Aeneid, shews that Aeneas was called into their country by 


2 As Pliny and Seneca in particular. " sed principis nomine constitutam 
" Sed nos obliterata quoque scrutabi- " rempublicam." Tacit. Annal. L. I., 
" mur ; nec deterrebit quarundam where he is speaking for Augustus. 
" rerum humilitas. Quanquam vide- Princeps here signifies much the same 
" mus Virgilium, praecellentissimum with princeps Senatus ; and so falls 
" vatem, ea de causa hortorum dotes in with the title of Pater; the Senator 
"fugisse; tantisque quae retulit, flores by way of eminence, or the ruling 
" mod6 rerum decerpisse." Pliny, L. Senator ; which was a title as modest 
14. Proem. " Virgilius noster,qui non as his power was exorbitant. 

" quid verissime, sed quid decentissime He had the title of Pater Patriae, 

" diceretur, aspexit ; nec agricolas too, given him by all the three orders 

" docere voluit, sed legentes delec- of the state ; in the strongest manncr 

" tare." Seneca, L. 13. Epist. 87. that could be. 

3 By de la Rue, in his life of Virgil. _, __• ' 1m« '' i *. ,-.• 

Sancte pater patnae, tibi plebes, tibi 

* Dum domus Aeneae Capitoli immo- curia nomen 

bile Saxum Hoc dedit, hoc dedimusnos tibi nomen 

Accolet; imperiumque pater Romanus eques. Ovid. Trist. 2. v. 126. 

habebit. . " , . , . ,._ . r ,. 

Vir"-. Aen. 9. v 419. 3 Plutarch, m his life of Juhus 

°° • • • • Caesar. 

" Non aliud discordantis patriae reme- 6 As being that of Dionysius Halicar' 

" diumfuisse.quin utabuno regeretur: nasseus, and aome of the besl Roman 

" non regno tamen^ neque dictatura, historians. 



were to obtain the mo- 

anu* that the Romans under them 
narchy of the world. 

It appears from Virgil n , and the other Roman writers, 
that Julius Caesar was of this royal race; and that Augustus 12 
was his sole heir. The natural result of all this is, that the 
promises made to the Roman people, in and through this race, 


10 Ilomer had said, that Aeneas and 
his descendants should be princes for 
ever ; or, in the eastern style, from ge- 
neration to generation. 

"OQga f&b clcrTspy.os yivsh xa) Utpavroj 

Aag^dvou, ov Kgovion;, mgi -jrdvrav ipiXaro 

O" sfav \\sy'svovro yuvatxuv ri Svtirdav. 
"hS»j ya(j U(Jidfia ysvshv bxfir,^ K^av/«v> 
Nuv 2s o*b Aivsiao Sin 'Xooistratv dvd^st, 
Kal ■xdtbl; <va'thwv, rol xsv psrovifffa ysvmrat' 
Homeri. H. T. 308. 

Tliat this prophecy was much insisted 
on by Augustus and his favourers, ap- 
pears probable from the early care that 
was taken to alter the reading from 
Toascro-tv to Wdvrscratv. See Ruaeus in 
Aen. 3. v. 97. Pope, on II. 20. v. 355. 
And Bocharfs letter to Segrais. Agree- 
ably to which, Virgil, in inserting this 
prophecy in his Aeneid, says, the Tro- 
jan race, or family of Aeneas should 
reign in Italy, and obtain the universal 

Hic domus Aeneae cunctis dominabitur 

oris : 
Et nati nalorum, et qui nascentur ab 

illis. ' Aen. 3. v. 97. 

He uses the same, even proverbially : 

Dum dornus Aeneae Capitoli immobile 

Accolet; imperiumque pater Romanus 


There are several other passages to 
the same purpose. 

Aspera Juno 

Consilia in melius referet, mecumque 

Romanos rerum dominos, gentemque 

Sic placitum. Veniet lustris labenti- 

bus aetas 

Cum domus Assaraci Phthiam clarasque 

Servitio premet 

Says Jupiter, Aen. 1. v. 285. 

Externi veniunt generi, qui sanguine 

Nomen in astra ferent ; quorumque ab 

stirpe nepotes 
Omnia sub pedibus, qua sol utrumque 

Aspicit oceanum,vertique regique vide- 


Faunus' Oracle to Latinus, 
Aen. 7. v. 101. 

11 Nascetur pulchra Trojanus origine 

Imperium oceano, famam qui terminet 

Julius, a magno demissum nomen liilo. 
Aen. I. v. 288. 

Genus qui ducis Olympo, 

Projice tela prior, sanguis meus 

Anchises of Julius Caesaf, 
Aen. 6. v. 836. 
Several of the Roman writers speak 
of this high descent of Julius Caesar ; 
and Suetonius in particular, who men- 
tions a funeral oration made by Julius 
Caesar, over one of his relations, in 
which he says were these words; 
" Amitae meae, Juliae,maternum genus 
ab regibus ortum ; paternum, cum diis 
immortalibus conjunctum est. Nam ab 
Anco Martio sunt reges, quo nomine 
fuit mater : a^Venere, Julii : Cujus gentis 
familia est nostra." Suet. in Julio, § 6. 

12 His uncle Julius adopted him for 
his son : and made him his heir. — Utque 
primum occisum eum, haeredemque se 
comperit; urbe repetita, haereditatem 
adiit : atque ab eo tempore exercitibus 
comparatis, primum cum M. Antonio 
Marcoque Lepido, dein tantum cum 
Antonio, per duodecim fere annos ; no- 
vissime, per quatuor et quadraginta, 
solus rempublicam tenuit. — Suetonius 
in Aug. § 8. 



the 7 express order of the Gods ; that he was made King of it 
by the 8 will of heaven ; and by all the human rights that could 
be ; that there was an 9 uninterrupted succession of Kings from 
him to Romulus ; that his heirs were to reign there for ever ; 


7 This is markcd very strongly 
throughout all the first part of the 
Aeneid. The very night Troy is burnt, 
Aeneas is ordered to go and build a 
city in Italy, and to carry his Gods to it, 
by the spirits of Hector and Creiisa. 
Cassandra had foretold the same fre- 
quently to his father before : 

Nunc repeto haec generi portendere 

debita nostro : 
Et saepe Hesperiam, saepe Itala regna 

vocare. Aen. 3. v. 185. 

Apollo orders the same : 

— Antiquam exquirite matrem. 
Hic domus Aeneae cunctis dominabitur 

oris : 
Et nati natorum, et qui nascentur ab 
Ulis. Aen. 3. v. 98. 

And his domestic Gods, more expressly : 

— Venturos tollemus in astra nepotes, 
Imperiumque urbi dabimus. In moenia 


Magna para 

Mutandae sedes. Non haec tibi littora 

Delius, aut Cretae jussit considere 

Est locus, Hesperiam Graii cognominc 

dicunt, — 
Hae nobis propriae sedes : hinc Dar- 

danus autor, etc. 

Aen. 3. v. 167. 

The same orders are given to Aeneas 
whilst at Carthage, by the spirit of his 
departed father ; Aen. 4. v. 351. And, 
lastly, by the great messenger of the 
chief of all the Gods : 

Ipse Deum tibi me claro demittit 

Regnator, coelum et terras qui numine 

torquet : 
Ipse haec ferre jubet celeres mandata 

per auras. 
Quid struis, aut qua spe Lybicis teris 

otia terris ? 
Ascanium surgentem et spes haeredis 

Respice : cui regnum Italicae Ronia- 

naque tellus 
Debentur. Aen. 4. v.275. 

Tot responsa secuti, 

Quae Superi Manesque dabant, — ■ 

Italiam petiere. 

Aen. 10. v. 32—34. 

8 The divine right appears from what 
is said in the note before: Virgil takes 
care to join all the civil rights lo it that 
can be. — He has an hereditary claim 
from Dardanus and Jasius. Aen. 3. v. 
168. — He has a vight by conquest. 
Aen. 12. v. 1. — He has a rightby com- 
pact. Aen. 12. v. 175 to 225. — And 
he has a right by marrying the only 
daughter of the then King. Aen. 12. 
v. 937 ; and 7. v. 50—52. 

9 Aeneas succeeds Latinus. Aen. 1. 
v. 265. liilus succeeds Aeneas. Aen. 
1. v. 269. His race (which is there- 
fore called the Trojan line by Virgil, 
Aen. 1. v. 273.) reign for the next three 
hundred years ; then follows Romulus, 
Aen. 1. v. 276, still of the Trojan line, 
as grandson of Aeneas Sylvius. Aen. 
6. v. 778. 

Romulus Assaraci quem sanguinis Ilia 

Educet Aen. 6. v. 780. 

Aeneas, Latinus, and the kings before 
him, resided in old Lalium. Aen. 7. v. 
38 to 49 ; and 1. v. 265. Iiilusremoved 
the royal seat to Alba. Aen. 1. v. 271, 
etc. Where it continued till Romulus 
transferred it to Rome. So that this 
continued succession of their kings is 
intimated, too, by Virgil even in the 
proposition of his poem ; where every 
thing that is said ought to _be of the 
greatest weight. 

What he proposes is, " to sing the 
" great hero who came from Troy, by 
" the order of Heaven, to settle in 
" Italy ; the difiiculties he underwent 
" in his voyage; and the wars he sus- 
" tained before he could found a city, 
" andintroducehisreligion intoLatium. 
** Whence sprung, first the Latian line 
" of kings, then their chiefs at Alba ; 
" and lastly, thc powers of Rome, that 
" raised herself so high among the na- 
" tions." 


terminating in Augustus ; the Romans if they would obey the 
Gods, and be masters of the world, were to yield obedience to 
the new establishment, under that prince. As odd a scheme as 
this may seem now, it is scarce so odd as that of some people 
among us, who persuaded themselves that an absolute obedience 
was owing to our kings, on their 13 supposed descent from some 
unknown patriarch. And yet that had its effect with many 
about a century ago, and seems not to have quite lost all its in- 
fluence, even in our remembrance. However that be, I think 
it appears plain enough, that the two great points aimed at by 
Virgil in his Aeneid, were to maintain their old religious tenets, 
and to support the new form of government, in the family of 
the Caesars. That poem, therefore, may very wellbe considered 
as a religious and political work : or rather (as the vulgar reli- 
gion with them was scarce any thing more than an engine of 
state) it may fairly enough be considered as a work merely po- 
litical. If this was the case, Virgil was not so highly encou- 
raged by Augustus and Maecenas for nothing. To speak a little 
more plainly ; he wrote in the service of the new usurpation, on 
the state ; and all that can be offered in vindication of him in 
this light is, that the usurper he wrote for was grown a tame 
one ; and that the temper and bent of their constitution at that 
time was such, that the reins of government must have fallen 
into the hands of some one person or another ; and might, pro- 
bably, on any new revolution, have fallen into the hands of 
some one less mild and indulgent than Augustus was at the time 
when Virgil wrote this poem in his service. But whatever may 
be said of his reasons for writing it, the poein itself has been 
highly applauded in all ages, from its first appearance to this 
day ; and though ]eft 14 unfinished by its author, has been always 


>3 See Sir Robert Filmer's Patriar- proof of it is the many breaks, orhemi- 
chal scheme; with Mr. Locke's confu- stichs in the poem itself; a thing never 
tation of it. done in any tinished poem by any other 

Roman poet of his time ; nor by V irgil 

"4 Though this is mentioned by seve- himself in any of his other poems, 
ral ancient writers, I think the plainest which were finished 


reckoned as much superior to all the other epic poems among 
the Romans, as Homer's is among the Greeks. Tt preserves 
more to us of the religion of the Romans, than all the other 
Latin poems (excepting only Ovid) put together : and gives us 
the forms and appearances of their deities as strongly as if we 
had so many pictures of them preserved to us, done by some of 
the best hands in the Augustan age. It is remarkable that he 
is commended by some of the antients themselves, for the 
strength of his imagination 15 as t.o this part.innlar; thnngh, in 
general that is not his character, so much as exactness. He 
was certainly the most correct poet,even of his time; in which 
all false thoughts and idle ornarnents in writing were discour- 
aged : and it is as certain, that there is but little of invention 
in his Aeneid ; much less, I believe, than is generally imagined. 
Almost all the little facts in it are 16 built on history ; and even 
as to the particular lines, no one perhaps ever ' 7 borrowed more 
from the poets that preceded him, than he did. He goes so 
far back as to old Ennius ; and often inserts whole verses, from 
him, and some other of their earliest writers. The obsoleteness 


15 Magna mentis opus Diriguere oculi. Tot Erinnys sibilat 

■ Currus et equos,faciesque Deorum, hydris ; 

Aspicere; et qualis Rutulum confun- Tantaque se facies aperit! Tum flam- 

dat Erinnys. mea torquens 

Nam si Virgilio puer et tolerabile desit Lumina, cunctantem et quaerentem 

Hospitium, caderent omnes a crinibus dicere plura 

hydri. Reppulit; et geminos erexit crinibus 

Surda nihil gemeret grave buccina. angues; 

Juvenal. Sat. 7, v. 71. Verberaque insonuit 

Juvenal on this occasion points to Aen. 7. v.451. 

the very noblest efforts of imagination . , , « , . 

that Virgil has shewn in his whole And the last, as evidently, of this: 

poem ; and it is remarkable that they ^ Saeva 

all relate to their deities Currus et [ ^ ad 

equos, may refer to that temble de- natoSi ^ 51 ^_ 525 . 
scnption ot Mars m his chariot, Aen. 

12. v. 332, or that mild one of Neptune, l6 There are several even of the mi- 

Aen. 1, v. 127, 146, and 155, as facies nutest passages in the Aeneid,(such as 

Deorum, to that noble passage, in the Ascanius' jest, and the like) which ap- 

description of Troy sinking in itsflames. pear to have been traditional and his- 

Aen. 2. v. 623 — 636. torical, to any one that has read Diony- 

rpv . , • j .1 1 sius Halicarnasseus. 

1 ne next words are evidently spoken 

of this passa^e in the 7th Aeneid : ,- m • c at u- „^j 

r ° '/ This appears from Macrobius.and 

Talibus Alecto dictis exarait in iras. the other collectors of Virgil's imita- 

At juveni oranti subitus tremor occu- tions of Homer, &c. 

pat artus : 



of their style did not hinder him much in this : for he 18 was a 
particular lover of tlieir old language ; and no doubt inserted 
many more antiquated words in his poem, than we can discover 
at present. Judgment is his distinguishing character; and his 
great excellence consistedin choosingand ranging things aright. 
Whatever he borrowed, he had the skill of making his own, 
by weaving it so well into his work, that it looks all of a piece ; 
even those parts of his poem, where this may be most practised, 
resembling a fine piece of Mosaic ; in which all the parts, though 
of such different marbles, united together ; and the various 
shadesand colours are so artfully disposed, as to melt off insen- 
sibly into one another. 


18 Unde pictai vestis, et aquai, Vir- 
gilius amantissimus vetustatis carmini- 
bus inseruit. Quintilian. Instit. Or. L. 

i. c. 7. p. 70. Ed. Hack. 1665. A 

great many ot' these old words in Vir- 
gil have probably been altered by the 
transcribers. Quid quod Ciceronis tem- 
poribus, paulumque infra, fere quoties 
S. litera media vocalium longarum, vel 
subjecta longis esset, geminabatur? ut 
caussa, cassus, divissiones. Quo modo 

et ipsum, etVirgilium quoque scripsisse, 
manus eorum docent, ib. p. 71. And 
others have been mistaken by the cri- 
"tics. Thus, for instance, they say Virgil 
uses fervere short, Aen. 8. v. 677, that 
the sound may agree more with the 
sense of the word; whereas the true 
reason was his imitating the practice of 
the ancients ; who, as we learn from the 
same author, used fervo and ferveo in- 
differently. Ib. L. i. c. 6. p. 57. 




V I R G I L. 

By Mr. holdsworth. 




IVIr. Holdsworth had designed for many years to publish an 
edition of Virgil's Georgics, with his notes to them. His death, 
and the frequent ill state of his health in the interval, prevented 
his carrying this design into execution. There is part of the 
preface which he intended to prefix to it ; and several little 
strictures (probably toward a Dissertation on the Georgics) 
among his papers ; which, though only strictures, as they are 
his, may deserve a place here. 

* Virgil's Georgics are generally allowed to be the most 
correct of all his works ; and yet, I believe, there is no part of 
them so much neglected, or so little read. And the reason is 
plain, because there is none so difficult to be understood. This 
difficulty does not, as I apprehend, arise from the poet's manner 
of expressing himself more obscurely in this poem than in his 
others ; for if that were true, it would not then deserve the 
character it bears. But it seems rather owing, partly to the 
natvire of the subject, and partly to the commentators, who have 
undertaken to explain it. The subject in itself may, perhaps, 
appear easy» as it chiefly relates to different parts of husbandry, 
and common affairs of life. But then we must consider that the 
lower and more humble the subject, the more necessary were 
metaphors to raise and ennoble it : which some of the com- 
mentators have not sufficiently observed, but have explained 
their Author in a too dry grammatical way. Again, we must 
consider that many of those things which Virgil treats about are 
liable to little changes in the same age, and much more in such 
different ages ; and that every country has its own manner of 
culture, and makes use of different instruments. This renders 
the subject much more difficult than it appears at first sight. 

B 2 


And the commentators having been of different conntries may 
probably have been biassed too much by their own fashions, and 
consequently must have mistaken Virgil in many places, for 
"want of being better informed in the husbandry and particular 
usage of the country for whieh his system is calculated. 

In short, I look upon this piece as a fine old paysage which 
had grown dark and a little obscure by length of time ; but has 
suffered much more by those who have attempted to clean it, 
and wipe off that little dust which it must unavoidably have 
contracted by age. Yet notwithstanding all this it still conti- 
nues a fine piece ; and by what remains well preserved, we may 
easily judge what the whole must have been in its original 
beauty ; and when every part of it was well understood. 

Beside the delicacy of expression in the Georgics, we ought 
particularly to remark the transitions from one precept to ano- 
ther, which are managed with sucli exquisite art, notwithstanding 
the number of them, as not to break the thread of the poem. 
And to prevent the Reader's being tired with precepts, inter- 
ludes and decorations at proper distances are judiciously inter- 
epersed, and those so well assorted, that though many of them 
are very foreign to the subject, they seem to belong to it, and 
flow from it ; and produce an agreeable variety, at the same 
time that they serve to compose one entire regular piece. 

Lest the inculcating precept upon precept might prove tire- 
some to the reader, the poet takes care not to encumber his 
poem with too much business, but relieves the subject with some 
variety or transition. 

Mr. Addison admires VirgiPs great art in his manner of 
treating his precepts ; that they fall in after each other by a 
natural unforced method ; and shew themselves in the best and 
most advantageous light. They are so finely wrought together 
in the same piece, that no coarse seam discovers where they join. 
As in a curious brede of needlework one colour falls away by 
such just degrees, and another rises so insensibly, that we see 
the variety without being able to distinguish the total vanishing 
of the one from the first appearance of the other. 

Democritus had given this title to a treatise on agriculture, 
as appears from Columella, lib. XI. c. iii. 

" Democritus in eo libro, quem Georgicon appellavit." 

The Georgics are the least read, and the least understood, 
of all Virgil's works. — How falsely has it been imagined, that 
the commentators have discovered more beauties than Virgil 
intended ! 

The Georgic (to use the words of Terence) is, " Corpus 
" solidum et succi plenum." 

Mr. Addison concludes this poem to be the most complete, 
elaborate, and finished piece of all antiquity. 


After tliis partieular account of the beauties of the Georgies, 
I should, in the next place, endeavour to point out its imper- 
fections, if it has any. But though I think there are some few 
parts in it not so beautiful as the rest, I shall not presume to 
name them, as rather suspecting my own judgment than I can 
believe a fault to be in tliat poem whicli lay so long under 
VirgiTs correction, and had his last hand put to it. 

Mr. Pope, in the first note on the nineteenth book of the 
Odyssey, makes the following observation on the general cha- 
racters of Homer and Virgil. Homer, says he, is like those 
painters of whom Apelles used to complain, that they left 
nothing to be imagined by the spectator, and made too accurate 
representations ; but Virgil is like Timantes in Pliny. " Ti- 
" manti plurimum adfuit ingenii, in omnibus operibus ejus intel- 
" ligitur plus semper quam pingitur." — And again, " Ostendit 
" etiam quae occultat." — This character is particularly verified 
in his Georgics. 

I have heard Mr. Holdsworth mention, in conversation, the 
followino; strictures, in relation to the Georgics. 

The style of each book of the Georgics is difFerent from all 
the others. That of the First is plain ; of the Second, various ; 
of the Third, grand ; and of the Fourth, pleasing. 

Columella's work is much the best comment on the Georgics. 

T wonder whence Seneca came to speak so slightly of Virgil's 
exactness in his Georgics ; but this I am sure of, that the more 
I have looked into the manner of agriculture used at present in 
Italy, the more occasio]i- I have had to admire the justice and 
force of his expressions ; and his exactness even in the minutest 
particulars. "| 

Mr. Holdsworth here probably had an eye to the following 
passage in Seneca. " Virgilius noster, qui non quid verissime, 
" sed quid decentissime diceretur, aspexit ; nec agricolas docere 
" voluit, sed legentes delectare." Lib. XIII. Ep. lxxxvii. 

Pliny also speaks but slightingly of Virgil. " Nos obliterata 
" quoque scrutabimur; nec deterrebit quarundam rerum 
" humilitas. Quanquamvidemus Virgilium, praecellentissimum 
" vatem, ea de causa hortorum dotes fugisse : e tantisque quae 
" retulit, flores modo rerum decerpisse," etc. Lib. XIV. 
prooem. p. 67. 

The particular for which Pliny blames Virgil is the time for 
sowing millet ; how unjustly, see Columell. II. ix. and Pliny 
himself, Nat. Hist. XVIII. vii. 

Columella talks of Virgil in a style very different from theee 
passages in Pliny and Seneca. " Haec autem consequemur, si 
" verissimo vati velut oraculo crediderimus." L. I. c. iv. 

" Vir eruditissimus, ut inea fert opinio." Cclumell. lib. I. 
c. iii. (of Virgil.) 


" Ideoque Virgilius cum et alia, tura et hoc de seminibus 
" praeclare sic disseruit : 

" Vidi ego lecta diu," etc. Id. II. ix. 12. 

" Sequeris autem novalia non solum herbida, sed quae ple- 
" rumque vidua sunt spinis ; utamur enim saepius auctoritate 
" divini carminis : 

" Si tibi lanitium curae est," &c. 

(From VirgiPs Georg. iii. 384.) Id. VII. iii. 9. 

" Sed Georgicum carmen affirmat nullam esse praestantiorem 
" medicinam, 

" Quam si quis ferro potuit rescindere summum 
" Ulceris os ; alitur vitium, crescitque tegendo." 

" Itaque reserandum est, etc. Id. VII. v. 10. Et ne dece- 
" damus ab optimo vate, 

" Vere novo terram," etc. Georg. I. 43. Id. II. 2. 

He never differs from Virgil, but in one single point, in which 
he says he and the old writers in agriculture in general were 
mistaken ; " Virgilius, et Saserna, Stolonesque, et Catones." 
Id. IV. ii. 

Speaking of bees, in particular, he says ; " Hyginus, veterum 
" auctorum placita secretis dispersa monumentis industrie col- 
" legit; Virgilius, poeticis floribus illuminavit ; Celsus utriusque 
" memorati adhibuit modum." Id. IX. ii. i. — (Yet how re- 
served in his poetical excursions even on that subject ! See 
ibid. III.) 



Ver. 1—5. 

" Quid faciat laetas segetes : quo ^sidere terram 
" Vertere, Maecenas, ulmisque adjungere vites, 
" Conveniat: quae cura boum, qui cultus habendo 
" Sit pecori : apibus quanta experientia parcis : 
" Hinc canere incipiam." 

t Virgil proposes the Stars as part of his subject here; and 
says elsewhere : 

" Tam sunt Arcturi sidera nobis 

" Hoedorumque dies servandi, et lucidus Anguis ; 

" Quam quibus in patriam ventosa per aequora vectis, 

" Pontus et ostriferi fauces tentantur Abydi." Ver. 207. 

Ovid, who wrote his Fasti chiefly for the use of the country- 
men and farmers, mentions them also in his proposition to that 
poem : 

" Lapsaque sub terras, ortaque signa canam." 

Ver. 5—9. 

" Vos, 6 * clarissima mundi 

" Lumina, labentem coelo quae ducitis annum: 
" Liber et alma Ceres, vestro si munei*e tellus 
" Chaoniam pingui glandem mutavit arista, 
" Poculaque inventis Acheloia miscuit uvis." 

-* It cannot, I think, be doubted, notwithstanding what Com- 

mentators say, but that Virgil means the Sun and Moon by 

" Vos, 6 clarissima," etc. Varro, in the beginning of his Agri- 
culture, invokes twelve Gods, whom he calls " duodecim Deos 
Consentes ;" 'tis probable that Virgil invokes the same re- 
markable number, which cannot be made out without reckoning 
the Sun and Moon. And though all VirgiPs twelve Gods are 
not the same as Varro^s, yet they both agree in invoking prin- 
cipallv ihe Sun and Moon, Ceres and Bacchus ; and both give 
the same reasons for their invocations. It cannot indeed well 
be imagined, v\hen the Poet employs so much of his ilrst book 
on the influences of the Sun and iNloon, that he should omit to 
invoke them. The objection, from the want of a copulative, is 
of little force, the con]unction being frequently omitted by the 
best Authors, particularly by Virgil himself within ten verses 
• ■ ' ■ " Ipse nemus linquens," etc. 


Ver. 18—20. 

" Adsis, 6 Tegeaee favens : oleaeque Minerva 
" Inventrix, uneique * puer monstrator aratri : 
" Et teneram ab raclice ferens, Sylvane, cupressum." 

* In a medal of Caracalla ; tlie reverse representsTriptolemus 
drawn by dragons ; and sowing, as Buonarroti supposes. See 
his Medaglioni, p. 423. 

Ovid, lib. III, de Trist. El. viii. describes Triptolemus in 
this attitude : 

" Nunc ego Triptolemi cuperem conscendere currus, 
" Misit in ignotam qui rude semen humum." 

Ver. 21—23. 
" Diique Deaeque omnes, studium quibus arva tueri ; 
" Quique novas alitis * nonnullo semine fruges, 
" Quique satis largum caelo demittitis imbrem." 

* " Non ullo" must certainly be jUhe true reading; — for 
hereby are only meant Plants which grow of themselves without 
our trouble of sowing them, " nullis hominum cogentibus," as 
he expresses it at the beginning of the 2 d book. These he dis- 
tinguishes from the Satis, in the following verse. 

Ver. 24—31. 

" Tuque adeof, quem mox quae sint habitura Deorum 
" Consilia, incertum est ; urbisne invisere, *' Caesar, 
" Terrarumque velis curam ; et te maximus orbis 
" Auctorem frugum, tempestatumque potentem 
" Accipiat, cingens materna tempora myrto: 
" An Deus immensi venias maris, ac tua nautae 
" Numina sola colant: tibi serviat ultima * 2 Thule, 
" Teque sibi generum Tethys emat omnibus undis." 

T This was not so strain'd a compliment in those times, as it 
may appear now. It might not be much more than what we 
say of every good man at his death, " That he is gone to 
Heaven." May not this be the meaning of what Columella 
says of Virgil himself ? 

" Siderei vatis referens praecepta Maronis." De Cult. 434. 

Siderei, now in Heaven ; i. e. among the Constellations. 

At least it grew to be a common compliment to the Emperors 

afterwards. See Lucan's Bombast on Nero, in the beginning 

of his Pharsalia ; where he begs him to get into the chariot of 
the Sun. — Val. Flaccus talks of Vespasian's getting up among 
the Constellations too, in the entrance of his Argonauties.— 


Statius says as much of Domitian, whilst living ; and would 
fain place him in the chariot of the Sun too, in another part of 
hisworks. (Sylv. iv. 1. 3. — ib. iii.138.) 

Heroes (such as Hercules, Perseus, etc.) were supposed by 
the Heathens to be actually become Constellations. They 
might therefore as well say of an Emperor, that he would be a 
Star, as that he M r as a great Hero. 

Horace ridicules this compliment, when given to bad or 
mean persons: 

" Sive mendaci lyra 

" Voles sonari: Tu pudica, Tu proba, 
" Perambulabis astra sidus aureum." 

Epod. xvii. 41 . of the infamous Canidia. 

* l After invoking twelve sorts of Deities, Virgil annexes 
Augustus to them. — Freinshemius, in his Supplement to Q. 
Curt. tells us, that, in theTheatre where Philip celebrated pub- 
lic shews just before he was murdered, there were the effigies 
of twelve Deities exquisitely wrought; and that there was a 
thirteenth, whieh represented Philip in nothing inferior to the 

xat tov EXs» zrflro-avlo fico/xov, cus Tqto-xx^sy.a.% 0e«. Phllostratus, 

Epist. lxx. Ed. Lips. 1709. 

* a As Virgil is here complimenting Augustus with dominions 
as God of the Sea, we must suppose that he means by his Thule, 
" ultima pars orbis mari adeunda. 1 ' — Where this was, according 
to the opinion of the Antients, is not agreed upon by Geogra- 
phers. But it is most probable that it meant Iceland. Strabo 
tells us of an author who mentions a country in that part of the 
world, though the knowledge of it was again lost in his time^ 
His account is as follows ; lib. i. speaking of the Description of 
the Earth by Eratosthenes, he says : " Latitudinem terrae de- 
" finiens a Meroes ^c^/xCgiv» usque ad Alexandrinum, pronunciat 
" esse pu'§i8r, svQzv £s ns rov c ExXcO-7rov7ov sjs§j oxlaxio-yikiHs kxalov 
l< a7ao\y<r, sjt' sis BoquaQsvn tnsvlaxisyjkitis, sir sis tov xuxXov tov oia., 
" ©aXns (r,v tyrici TluQsxs aito (azv t/is Bqslxvvixns l£ r^sgcov raXav 
" xTisy^iv tsqos Aqxlov, zyfus £' sivxi rns tssiirr/uias SxXarlris) aTO.cfs 
" cos /auqivs y^iKms -uysvlxy.oaiHs .'' , 

'Tis true that Strabo ridicules this account given of Thule by 
Pytheas, and denies that there was any such place as Thule, 
because they had no knowledge of it in his time. His words 
are these, as in the translation: " Quis autem mentis compos 
" intervallum quod a Borysthene ad Thulen ponit pro vero 
" judicabit? Cum et Pytheas, qui Thules historiam retulit, 
" homo menclacissimus sit inventus: Et qui Iberniam Britanni- 



" cam viderunt nlhil de Thule dicant, sed alias quasdam parvas 

" circa Britanniam insulas commemorent." Immediately 

aftenvards, he says : " Qui e Britannia media non amplius iv 
" stadiorum progrcssus millia terram inveniat cujus diversa sit 
" habitationis ratio, nempe ad Hiberniam; ut ulteriora ista in 
s * quae ille (Pytheas) Thulen rejecit, non jam habitari possint." 

Again, lib. ii. Strabo repeats the account of Thule given by 
Pytheas. — " Pytheas Massilierisis circa Thulen Britannicarum 
" Insularum Septentrionalissimam ultima ait esse, ubi Tropicus 
" aestivus Arctici Circuli vicem gerit. De reliquis nihil nar- 
" rat, neque quod insula sit Thule, neque utrum eo usque ha- 
" bitationes pertingant, ubi Tropicus pro Arctico est. Ego 
" autem illum septentrionalem finem multo propius meridiem 
" versus existimo. Qui enim hodie terras perlustrant ultra 
" Hiberniam nihil possunt referre, quae non longe versus Sep- 
" tentrionem ante Britanniam jacet, plane ferorum hominum 
" domicilium, et propter frigus male incolentium, ibi ergo 
" finem constituendum censeo." 

Again Strabo, lib. iv. at the latter end of his account of 
Britain, says: " Circa Britanniani sunt cum aliae parvae insu- 
"lae; tum magna, Hibernia; versus Septentrionem juxta Bri- 
" tanniam porrecta, latior quam longior. De hac nihil certi 
" habeo quod dicam, nisi quod incolae ejus Britannis sunt 
" magis agrestes," etc. Then he adds : " Magis etiam obscura 
" est Thules historia ob tam longinquum situm, omnium enim 
" quarum ferantur nomina maxime versus Septentrionem esse 
" hanc dissitam aiunt.'' 

From these several passages it appears, that neither the North 
part of Scotland (as Sir Robert Sibbald would have it), nor Ire- 
land, nor any of the smaller Islands round Britain, could be the 
Thule, of the Antients : but that they reckon'd it much farther 
North. 'Tis not surprising that Strabo should have no know- 
ledo-e of it, when he had so little information even of Ireland, as 

appears from his situation and description of it. And when 

he tells us that, " ulteriora ista, in quae Pytheas Thulen rejicit, 
" non habitari possint." But he confesses, lib. ii. that he never 
travelled that way, not even so far as into Gaul, and what he 
relates was onlv upon hearsay ; and upon so bad authority, that 
he declares in nis account of Ireland : Txulx o' ovlco Xiyofxsv ws 
hk zyjvlzs z^ioTrioJHs (accoIupzs. lib. iv. Pytheas, being a Marsilian, 
might have opportunities of being better inform'd : and that he 

was rightly inibrm'd is now manifest. Strabo himself, when 

he is condemning Pytheas, ownsat the same time thathis account 
was very judicious ; and that, supposing there was such a country 
as Thule, they must probably live in the manner as Pytheas 
describes. " Quod ad caeli rationem et mathematicam attinet 
" contemplationem videtur non inepte eorum locorum descrip- 


u sisse proprietatem ; quae frigidae appropinquant plagae," 
etc. lib. iv. 

All the Poets and othcr Authors, who mention Thule, speak 
of it as the uttermost part of the world towards the North; 
and as Britain in VirgiTs time was esteemed part of the Roman 
dominions, and as Augustus received tribute from thence, Virgil 
in this compliment must extend his view further. And as he 
subjects Maximum Orbem to him, as God of the Earth ; so he 
gives him the utmost bouncls of the Sea, as a God of that 

Ver. 32—35. 

" Anne novum tardis sidus te mensibus addas, 
" Qua locus Erigonen interf, Chelasque sequentes 
" Panditur: ipse tibi jam brachia contrahit ardens 
" Scorpius, et coeli justa plus parte reliquit." 

t With how great propriety Virgil has chosen this place for 
Augustus among the Constellations ; see Pol. D. ii. N. 51. and 
that part of the Text, which the Note relates to. 

Ver. 36—40. 

+ " Quicquid eris; (nam te nec sperent Tartara regem, 
" Nec tibi regnandi veniat tam dira cupido : 
" Quamvis Elvsios miretur Graecia campos, 
" Nec repetita sequi curet Proserpina matrem) 
" Da facilem cursum, atque audacibus annue coeptis." 

f The connexion of the sense seems to be thus — " Vv hether 
" you will be a God on Earth, on the Seas, or of Heaven, (for 
" any part of Hades is too severe a Post of Honour ior so mild 
" a Prince, tho', if we believe the Greek Poets, the place has 
" its charms too,) grant me your Patronage," etc. 

Ver. 43—46. 

" Vere novo, gelidus canis cum montibus humor 
" Liquitur, et Zephyro putris se gleba resolvit; 
" Depresso incipiat jam tum mihi taurus aratro 
" Ingemere, et sulco attritus splendescere vomer." 

* The beginning of Spring, according to the Roman Kalendar, 
was vii. id. Feb. but, not to coniine the beginning of ploughing 
precisely to a day, Virgil proceeds to explain his " Ver novum" 
to mean, as soon as the severity of Winter begins to abate. 

" Gelidus canis cum montibus humor 

" Liquitur," etc. 

Columella understands this passage in thismanner, Lib. XI. c. ii. 
where, alluding to this verse " Vere novo," — he says, "Novi 


" autem veris principium non sic observare rusticus debet 
" quemadmodum astrologus, ut expeetet certum diem illum qui 
" veris initium facere dicitur : sed aliquid etiam sumat de parte 
" hyemis, quoniam consumpta bruma jam intepescit annus, 
" permittitque clementior dies opera moliri." — Virgil likewise 
miore fully declares this to be his meaning in a few verses after, 
where he specifies the time for ploughing different sorts of land. 

-" Ergo age, terrae 

" Pingue solum primis extemplo a mensibus anni." 

Ver. 64. etc. 

The " primus mensis" was January. So Columella in the 
same place, " Possit igitur rusticus ab idibus Januariis (ut 
'• principem mensem Romani anni observet) auspicari culturarum 
" officia." — And again a little after, — " Ab Idibus Januariis 
" siccos et pingues agros tempestivum est proscindere ; nam et 
" uliginosi et mediocris*habitus sub aestate vereve agendi sunt." 

Ver. 47—49. 

" Illa seges demum votis respondit avari 
" Agricolae, bis quse solem, bis frigora * sensit: 
" Illius immensae ruperunt horrea messes." 

* Of this passage Pliny thus says. " Quarto seri sulco 
" Virgilius existimatur voluisse, cum dixit optimam esse sege- 
" tem, quae bis solem,bis frigorasensisset." L. XVIII. c. xx. 

Columella frequently uses " secundo, tertio, quarto sulco," 
for so many times ploughing, or turning up the ground ; par- 
ticularly lib. II. c. xiii. he says, " Semina, quae quarto sulco 
" seruntur, in jugeribus viginti quinque desiderant bubulcorum 
" operas cxv. nam proscinditur is agri modus quamvis durissimi 
" quinquaginta operis, iteratur quinque et viginti, tertiatur et 
" conseritur xl." where manifestly the sowing is the fourth 

'* In VirgiFs rule, " Bis quae solem," etc. not only direction is 
given for ploughing four times, but the reason included for so 
doing; that both heat and cold meliow the ground. Virgil in 
other places hints at the same effects of heat and cold. 

In the second Georgic, speaking of planting young vines, 
he sa}-s, 

" Terram multo ante memento 

Excoquere." Ver. 260. 

Ar.te supinatas aquiloni ostendere glebas." — Ib. 261. 

" Optima putri 


Arva solo, id venti curant gelidaeque pruinae. Ib. 263. 


Columella expresslv ascribes this virtue to tlie sun and frost. 
L. V. c. ix. where, giving instruction about planting olives, he 
says, " Ipsis scrobes praeparantur anno ante ; vel, si tempus non 
" largitur, priusquam deponantur arbores, stramentis incendan- 
" tur scrobes, ut eos ignes putres faciat, quos sol et pruina 
" facere debuerat." 

Varro havinggiven directions,lib. I.c. xxx. for the early plow- 
ings in the Spring, that is, in cold weather, tells' us, c. xxxv. 
" Quid inter solstitium et caniculam faciendum sit." And ex- 
pressly orders at that time; " Arationes absolvere ; quae eo 
" fructuosiores fiunt, quo calidiore terra aratur." — And then 
adds, " Cum proscideris offringi oportet, id est, iterare ut fran- 
" gantur glebae." As he had before directed in the very same 
words for the earlv plowing ; so that he must mean two summer 
plowings, as well as two winter or spring. 

Pliny speaks of deep sliff land at his Tusculanum, which re- 
quired nine times plowing. Lib. V. epist. vi. 

Ver. 50—53. 

" At prius * l ignotum ferro quam * 2 scindimus aequor, 
" Ventos * 3 et varium coeli praediscere morem 
" Cura sit, ac patrios cultusque habitusque locorum : 
" Et quid quaeque ferat regio, et quid quaeque recuset." 

*' Varro, lib. I. c. v. treating of the parts of agriculture, 
says, " Agriculturae quatuor sunt partes summae : e queis prima 
" cognitio fundi, solum, partesque ejus quales sint. Secunda, 
" quae in eo fundo opus sunt ac debeant esse culturae causa. 
" Tertia, quae in eo praedio colendi causa sint facienda. 
" Quarta, quo quicquam tempore in eo fundo fieri conveniat." 
These four heads he subdivides into more. Virgil observes 
the same method very artfully. 

* 2 This was the proper term for breaking up ground, as ap- 
pears from Varro. " Terram cum primum arant, proscindere 
" appellant." Lib. I. c. xxix. 

* 3 Columella, citing this passage of Virgil, says, " Verissimo 
" vati velut oraculo crediderimus." Lib. I. c. iv. 

Ver. 56 — 59. 
Nonne vides, croceos ut Tmolus odores, 

" India mittit ebur, molles sua * l thura Sabaei ? 
" At Chalvbes * 2 nudi ferrum, virosaque Pontus 
" Castorea *V 

*' " Sabaei propter maximam fructuum copiam otiosi socor- 
" desque vivunt." Strabo, 1. XVI. p. 778. 

Pliny gives a long and very particular account of the tree 
which produces Thus, lib. XII. c. xiv. . 


*2 " Chalybes nudi," in opposition to the " molles Sabaei." 
The Vulcansare represented naked by the painters and statua- 
ries, as well as by the poets. 

•* 3 A strong medicine ; and, in particular, a strong soporific : 
so Lucretius ; 

" Castoreocpie gravi mulier sopita recumbit." 

Lib. vi. ver. 794. 

It is still much used in medicines ; and especially in nervous 
cases : and as the Romans had it from Pontus, we now have 
our best from Muscovy, and. the most northern countries. 

Ver. 63—70. 

" Terrae 

" Pingue ** solum primis extemplo a mensibus anni 

" Fortes invertant tauri : glebasque jacentes 

" Pulverulenta coquat maturis * a solibus aestas. 

" At si non fuerit tellus * 3 foecunda, sub ipsum 

" Ai'cturum tenui sat erit suspendere sulco : 

" Illic officiant laetis ne frugibus herbae ; 

" Hic sterilem exiguus ne deserat humor arenam." 

* l Columella giving directions " quo tempore campi arandi 
" sunt," lays down this rule : — " Colles pinguis soli, peracta 
" sationetrimestri, mense Martio, si vero tepor coeli, siccitasque 
" regionis suadebit, Februario statim proscindendi sunt. Deinde 
" de Aprili medio usque in solstitium iterandi tertiandique." 
Lib. II. c. iv. — And afterwards at the end of the chapter, gives 
the same instruction about ploughing poor land, and that for the 
same reason as Virgil. " Graciles clivi non sunt aestate arandi, 
" sed circa Septembris calendas, quoniam si ante hoc tempus 
" proscinditur effoeta & sine succo humus, aestivosole peruritur, 
" nullasque virium reliquias habet. Itaque optime inter Ca- 
" lendas et Idus Septenibris aratur, ac subinde iteratur, ttt 
" primis pluvii-s aequinoctialibus conseri possit." 

* 2 The word Maturus denotes ripeness and perfection, as a 
man is said to be Maturus when he is come to his full vigour ; 
and so the sun may be very properly said to be, in the midst of 
Summer, when he goeth forth in his strength. Petronius, who 
frequently imitates Virgil in his poem on the Civil War, ex- 
presses the same thought by a synonvmous terni, wlien speaking 
of the snow on the Alpes not being melted by the greatest heats, 
he says ; 

" Non solis adulti 

" Mansuescit radiis." 

The rendering Maturus by Maturantibus (as Ruaeus does) 
quite loses the beauty of this thought. 



* 9 Columella says, " Macerrimi et aridi agri post aestatem, 
'• primo Autumno,arandi et subinde conserendi." Lib. XI. c. 2. 

Ver. 71-78. 

" Alternis idem tonsas cessare novales, 
" Et segnem patiere situ durescere campum. 
" Aut ibi flava seres mutato * l sidere * 2 farra ; 
" Unde prius * s laetum siliqua quassante legumen, 
" Aut tenues foetus viciae, tristisque * 4 lupini 
'.* Sustuleris * s fragiles calamos, sylvamque sonantem. 
" * 6 Urit enim lini campum seges, urit avenae : 
t( Urunt Lethaeo perfusa papavera somno." 

*' This may possibly mean, " post alterum mensem," ac- 
cording to the manner of cultivating in the Campania of Naples, . 
where they give their " land very little rest." — Columella 
observes ; " Viciam fabam, et lupinum, novissimis temporibus, 
" post coactos alios fructus tolli posse." Lib. XI. c. ii. — If 
we understand " mutato sidere," as Ruaeus does ; — " converso 
" anno," then the land must lie fallow for a year, and this rule 
differs little from the former, " alternis cessare. 11 — Whereas 
Virgil seems to mean that, in case the farmer cannot afford to 
let his ground lie fallow, then he must sow it with such seed as 
manures the land ; or if he is tempted, or has occasion to sow 
flax, &c, he must well dung his land; and then concludes, that 
such change of seed is in some measure equivalent to letting the 
land rest : 

" Sic quoque requiescunt." 

The word Sidus cannot properly be applied to the sun, and, 
therefore, cannot be used to signify a year. But it means either 
a sign in the zodiacor some other constellation, and in that sense 
Virgil often uses it to signify a month or part of the year. As 
Aen. IV. 309. " Hyberno sidere." — And in thefirst verse of the 

" Quo sidere terram vertere." 

If it be objected, that a month is too little time from reaping 
Lupins, etc, to the sowing of corn; we may be justified by the 
expression, " mutato sidere," to allow near two months (viz.) 
from the sun's entering one sign to his near leaving the next. 
And this time may be sufficient, and, I believe, is agreeable to 
the present practice in Italy, especially near Naples. 

** The wnite wheat is called Carosella. — " Granumrutilum si, 
" cum diffissumest, eundem colorem interiorem habet, integrum 
" esse non dubitamus. Quod extrinsecus albidum, intus etiam 
" conspicitur candidum, leve ac vanum intelligi debet. Nec 
" nos tanquam optabilis agricolis fallat siligo (the whiteness of 


" thebran); nam hoc tritici vitium est; et quamvis candore 
" praestet, pondere tamen vincitur." Col. Lib. II. c. ix. 

* 3 Columella says, " Lupinus maxime ex iis quae seruntur, 
" juvat arvum." — And again; " Sunt etiam qui putent fabam 
" vice stercoris fungi ; quod sic ego interpretor, ut existimem 
" non sationibus ejus pinguescere humum, sed minus hanc quam 
" caetera semina vim terrae consumere. Nam certum habeo 
" frumentis utiliorem agrum esse, qui nihil, quam qui istam 
" siliquam proximo anno tulerit." Lib. II. c. x. 

Legumen is a general word, but in this place, as is evident 
from what follows, one kind only is meant, that is, the Faba, as 
chief of the Legumes. So Pliny : 

" Sequitur natura leguminum inter quae maximus honos 
" fabae." Lib. XVIII. c. xii. — " Laetum," because (as Pliny 
says in the same place) " faba solum, in quo sata est, laetificat 
" stercoris vice." — ■ — And that we are to understand the Faba 
here by Legumen, is clear from another passage in Pliny : 

" Virgilius alterniscessarearvasuadet,et hoc,si patiantur ruris 
" spatia, utilissimum proculdubio est. Quod si neget conditio, 
" far serendum, unde et lupinum, et aut vicia, aut faba sublata 
" sint, et quae terram faciant laetiorem. 1 ' Lib. XVIII. c. xxi. 
— Also in another place : " Segetem stercorant fruges lupinum, 
" faba, vicia." Lib. XVII. c. ix. 

* 4 " Lupinumab omnibus animalibus amaritudine suatutum." 
Plin. Lib. XVIII. c. xiv. 

* The Tristis Lupinus is not our Lupin ; but that seed, which 
thev lay a-soak so long in water (to get rid of its bitterness,) and 
even sell it so in the streets in ltaly. It is but a very insipid 
thing, at best. The Faselus of the Romans is our Lupin. 

* 5 Lupins were used to be sown (as they are still) for three 
different purposes, either to ripen for seed; or to feed cattle 
when green ; or to manure land by ploughing them in before 
they were ripe. Virgil must necessarily in this place, according 
to the thread of his discourse, mean the first sort, i. e. Lupins, 
which grew to be ripe. And therefore the word " sustuleris" 
is here very expressive ; " fragiles calami," and " sylva sonans" 
denote likewise and enforce this meaning. Varro, Lib. I. c. xxiii. 
speaks of Lupins sown purposely to manure poor ground. 
" Quaedametiam serenda, nontam propter praesentem fructum, 
" quam in annum prospicientem, quod ibi subsectaatque relicta 
" terram faciunt meliorem. Itaque lupinum, cum necdum 
" siliculam cepit, et nonnunquam fabam, si ad siliquas non ita 
" pervenit, ut fabam legere expediat, si ager macrior est, pro 
" stercore inarare solent. 

* 6 Our farmers, in many places, use a like term. When any 
thing is blighted, they say, It is scorched. 

The Poet does not hereby prohibit the sowing of flax and 


oats ancl poppies, as is manifest, ver. 212, where he prescribes 
the time for sowing them ; but he bids the countrymen observe, 
that these sorts of seed do not manure and enrich the land as 
Legumes do, but on the contrary burn it up; and, therefore, 
when he sows corn after them, which he allows may be done, the 
land ouglit first to be well dunged, being to be looked upon as, 
" arida et effoeta." — These two words make this passage more 
intelligible than is commonly imagined. 

" Lini semen, nisi magnus est ejus in ea regione quam colis 
" proventus, et pretium proritat, serendum non est, agris enim 
" praecipue noxium est." Col. lib. II. c. x. — It is plain, not- 
withstanding what some commentators say, that Columella 
understands this passage of Virgil in the sense as 1 have explained 
it above : for, having quoted these two verses, he adds, " neque 
" enim dubium quin et iis seminibus infestetur ager, sicut etiam 
" milio et panico. Sed omni solo, quod, praedictorum legumi- 
" num segetibus fatiscit, una praesens medicina est, ut stercore 
" adjuves, et absumptas vires hoc velut pabulo refoveas." 
Lib. II. c. xiv. 

Ver. 79—83. 

" Sed tamen* 1 alternis facilis labor arida tantum 
" Ne saturare fimo pingui pudeat sola; neve 
" Effoetos -* 2 cinerem immundum jactare per agros. 
" Sic quoque mutatis requiescunt foetibus arva, 
" Nec nulla interea est inaratae gratia terrae." 

** Virgil speaking above, ver. 71, of ground lying fallow, 
uses this word nlternis. And therefore, I suppose, the com- 
mentators explain the word in the same sense here. But it mav 
be observed that it is there joined with cessare et novale, and 
therefore there can be no dispute in that place about the mean- 
ing of it. I cannot think that it is to be taken in the same sense 
here, or that it has any relation to lying fallow, but to the alter- 
nate sowing of the seed just before mentioned. For the Poet is 
now speaking of those, who could not afford, or were unwilling, 
to let their ground lie fallow : 

" Aut ibi flava seres," etc. 

He advises such to sow Far immediately after beans, vetches, 
or lupines, because such pulse enrich the ground, and serve in- 
stead of manure. Then he bids them beware of sowing flax, 
oats, or poppies, because such seeds burn and dry the land. 
However, he allows even those to be sowed alternatelv? pro- 
vided proper care be first taken to dung the land well, which it 
must require, being thus dried and exhausted : 



" Arida tantum 

" Ne saturare fimo pingui pudeat sola, neve 

" Effoetos cinerem immundum jactare per agros." 

The following verse shews, I think, plainly, that the Poet 
substitutes this change of seed instead of lying fallow, saying it 
serves in some measure to the same purpose as the rest : 

" Sic quoque mutatis requiescunt foetibus arva." 

And then, for the encouragement of those who can let their 
land lie fallow, he concludes, that the farmer ought to consider 
that some benefit accrues to him, even whilst his land is un- 
tilled : 

" Nec nulla interea est inaratae gratia terrae." 

This, I think, makes the whole connexion clear. 

* 2 " Transpadanis cineris usus adeo placet, ut anteponant 
" fimo jumentorum." Plin. lib. XVII. c. ix. 

Ver. 84—93. 

" Saepe etiam steriles * l incendere profuit agros, 
" Atque levem * 2 stipulam crepitantibus urere flammis. 
" Sive inde occultas vires et pabula terrae 
" Pinguia concipiunt: sive illis omne per ignem 
" Excoquitur vitium, atque exsudat inutilis humor : 
" Seu plures calor ille vias, et caeca relaxat 
" Spiramenta, novas veniat qua, succus in herbas: 
" Seu durat magis, et venas astringit hiantes: 
" Ne tenues pluviae, rapidive potentia solis 
" Acrior, aut Boreae penetrabile frigus adurat." . 

* l Virgil is so concise in his rules, that he seldom uses two 
different phrasesto express the same thing: and, therefore, pro- 
bably, two sorts of burnings are meant here; but it does not 
follow that Bakeburning (as Dr. Martyn imagines) is one of 
them. T rather think that he means, by " steriles agros," 
burning bushes, weeds, and brambles on ground which had long 
lain unmanured, and then stubble, as in the second verse. 

* 2 The burning thestubble, etc. upon the land, is still prac- 
tised in Italy, and begins in the month of August, the day after 
St. Laurence: and various reasons are still given for doing it. 
Fontanini,in hisAntiquities of Orta, speaking of the life of Car- 
dinal Ferdinand Nuptio, gives us a remarkable instance of the 
regard still paid to the foregoing verses, and what an influence 
they had in continuing the custom of burning the Campagna of 
Rome. " Jo. Maria Lancisius, qui apud Clementem Unde- 



" cimum Pont. Max. non parum gratiae et auctoritatis sibi 
" comparaverat, ad avertendum ardentissimum aestum ex in- 
" cendio stipularum urbi imminentem, Pontifici suasit, imo 
'* etiam persuasit, ut publico edicto stipulas agri Romani am- 
" plius incendi vetaret. Interim accidit forte fortuna (Card.) 
** Nuptium de rebus suum munus spectantibus ad Pontificem 
" adire, ex cujus ore, quum decreti mox vulgandi consilium 
" accepisset, illud pro candore animi sui probare non potuit. 
" Morem comburendi agri Romani stipulas longe antiquissi- 
" mum; optimosque effectus, qui inde consequerentur, osten- 
" dit ; recitatis extemplo (decem hisce) Virgilii carminibus ; 
" quibus Pontificem a sententia facile revocavit." Antiquitat. 
Hortae, lib. III. c. ii. 

T It might be from this custom that the Poets take their fre- 
quent similes from corn-burning. Virg. Aen. II. ver. 304. — 
Ov. Ep. XV. ver. 9. and in several other places. 

They never do this, but when there is a brisk wind; they 
stand to the windward and set fire to the stubble ; and it is sur- 
prising to see, in how little a time it runs over a whole field of 
corn. You plainly see the fire gain and run on continually, 
though at a considerable distance. We saw it in August, 1741, 
in the south of France, to perfection : as it was the hottest sea- 
son of the year, and as they had no rains there for three or four 
months, every thing was so dry that the fire ran with its 
greatest rapidity. 

Ver. 94—99. 

" Multum adeo, #* rastris glebas qui frangit inertes, 
" Vimineasque * 2 trahit crates, juvat arva ; neque illum 
" Flava * 3 Ceres alto nequicquam spectat Olympo : 
" Et qui, proscisso quae suscitat aequore terga, 
" Rursus in obliquum verso * 4 perrumpit aratro : 
" Exercetque * 5 frequens tellurem, atque imperat arvis." 

*' Quaer. If rastra is any where joined with trahere? I be- 
lieve not. It was, as I imagine, a hand instrument, as a rake. 

* 2 ' Our countrymen would scarce understand what is meant 
by Vimineae Crates : but such are still used in Italy, more than 
harrows, for*smoothing land. — They first break the clods with 
bats, and then lay it smooth by drawing hurdles over it, which 
Columella expresses thus: — " Glebas sarculis resolvere, et in- 
ducta crate coaequare." Lib. II. c. xviii. The breaking clods 
with bats is practised in some parts of England in stiff ground, 
and is termed Balling. 

* 3 This thought, perhaps, is taken from some celebrated 

painting or bas-relief. f Much in the manner, I suppose, 

that she is represented in the picture, answering this place, in 
the famous Vatican Virgil. See Pol. VIII. m. 

c 2 


— — <Dj>.£y] $1 svcnitpavos Avi/y^rio^. 

Hesiod. Op. et Dies, ver. 300. 

* 4 I observed before, verse 50, on the word Scindimus, that 
Virgil used the proper term of art. Perrumpit, if not the pro- 
per term, is at least of the same importance, as we learn from 
Varro : " Quod prima aratione glebae grandes solent excitari ; 
cum iteratur, offringere vocant." Lib. I. c. xxix. — Columella 
expresses this ploughing by, " Transversis adversisque sulcis." 
Lib. III. c. xiii. 

* 2 " Compluribus iterationibus sic resolvatur vervactum in 
" pulverem, ut vel nullam vel exiguam desideret occationem 
" cum seminaverimus." Col. Lib. II. c. iv. 

Exercet and Imperat are metaphors taken from military 

Ver. 100—103. 

" Humida *' solstitia atque hiemes orate serenas, 
" Agricolae : hiberno laetissima pulvere farra, 
" Laetus ager : nullo tantum se * 2 Mysia cultu 
" Jactat, et ipsa suasmirantur * 3 Gargara messes. 

** Ovid makes Solstitium to signify expressly the summer sol- 
stice only, and Bruma the winter : for, complaining that all 
time during his banishment seemed long, " et lentis passibus 
" ire;" he thus expresses himself, 

" Nec mihi solstitium quicquam de noctibus aufert, 
" Efficit angustos nec mihi bruma dies." 

De Trist. Lib. V. El. xi. 

•f Fluvius Novanus omnibus solstitiis torrens, Brumd sicca- 
tur. Plin. Lib. II. c. ciii. 

* 2 Columella mentions Mysia and Libya, " uti largis abun- 
<c dantes frumentis." Lib. III. c. viii. 

■* 3 As there was little good husbandry in Mysia, and their 
good crops were owing to their climate, the Poet very prettily 

' i ' " Ipsa suas mirantur Gargara messes." 

Ver. 104—110. 

" Quid dicam, jacto qui semine cominus *' arva 
** Insequitur, cumulosque ruit male pinguis * 2 arenae ? 
'* Deinde -;:; 3 satis fiuvium inducit, rivosque sequentes ? 
" Et cum exustus ager morientibus aestuat herbis, 
" f Ecce, supercilio clivosi tramitis undam 
** Elicit: illa cadens raucum per levia murmur 
" Saxa ciet, scatebrisque arentia temperat arva." 


* l It appears by this that balling was repeated after sowing. 
They turned the earth over the seed with the plough, and then 
broke the clods which remained. — Varro observes that this 
breaking of clods after sowing was practised only upon little 
farms, not upon such extensive lands as were in Apulia. " Se- 
" getes non tam latas habent ut in Apulia, id genus praedii per 
" sarritores occare solent, si quae in porcis grandiores relictae 
" sunt glebae." Lib. I. c. xxx. 

* 2 1 cannot think, with Ruaeus, that Virgil ever uses Arena 

for any sort of land indifferently. The instances produced 

by Ruaeus himself shew the contrary. The lands of Aegypt 
and Arabia, though fat and rich, wereloose; and Columella 
compares the land of Aegypt to " Cinis soluta." Lib. II. c. 
ii. ver. 25. 

Virgil is here speaking of dry land, which wanted water, and 
therefore might properly be called Arena : and, " male pin- 
guis," as not being loose like the land in Aegypt, but having 
some parts so clotted together, as required to be broken to 

* 3 See observations on Iliad XXI. ver. 289, Mr. Pope's 

T This is particularly well practised in Italy at present ; at 
least in gardens. I have seen of them there, which (from a 
great channel, cut directly from the place, where the vvater wells, 
and veined into a vast number of little ones) are supplied with 
water round every the minutest bed in it, from only taking up 
the hatch at the reservoir. 

This was used in their gardens too of old: 

" Est mihi foecundus dotalibus hortus in agris: 
" Aura fovet ; Wqnidae fo?ite rigatur aquae." 

Ov. Fast. V. 

" Et dare quas $itie?i$ jam bibat hortus aquas." 

Id. de Pont. I. 
" Irriguae dabitur non mihi sulcus aquae. 

Id. Fragm. ver. 166. 

" Puteusque brevis, ?iec ?'este movendus> 

" In tenues plantas facili diffunditur haustu." 

Juv. Sat. III. 

" Jam resonant frondes ; jam cantibus obstrepat arbos; 
" I procul, O Dorida, primumque reclude canalem ; 
" Et sine jamdudum sitientes irriget hortos." 

Calphurnius, Ecl. II. ver. 97. 
Veb. 113, 114. 

" * Quique paludis 

" Collectum humorem bibula deducit arena ?" 



* Who drains the collected moisture of the marshfrom the 

soaking sand. Dr. Martyn. Quaer. If " bibula arena" may 

not rather mean, sand thrown on moist ground and mixed with 
it ; in order to correct it, andsuck up the superfluous moisture? 

Ver. 118—124. 

" Nec tamen (haec cum sint hominumque boumque labores 
" Versando terram experti) nihil improbus * anser, 
" Strymoniaeque * J grues, et amaris * 2 intuba fibris 
" Officiunt, aut umbranocet. Pater ipse colendi 
" Haud * 3 facilem esse viam voluit, primusque per artem 
" Movit agros, curis acuens mortalia corda : 
" Nec torpere gravi passus sua regna veterno." 

* Virgil speaks of the geese, as a troublesome bird; and very 
pernicious to the corn. They are still so, in flocks, in the Cam- 
pania Felice ; the country which Virgil had chiefly in his eye, 
when he was writing his Georgics: 

** " Strymona sic gelidum, bruma pellente, relinquunt 
" Poturae te, Nile, grues." Lucan V. 711. 

See other places of the same Author. 

* 2 " Est et erraticum intubum,quod in Aegypto Cichorium vo- 
cant. Plin. lib. XIX. c. viii. This is stillcalled Cichorio atRome, 
and is very much eaten by the common people, and is esteemed 
a very wholesome salad. But the outside being remarkably bit- 
ter, they are obliged tostrip off the skin and therewith the fibrea 
(which are the bitterest part) in order to make it eatable. In 
the season of the year one sees people stripping this cichory at 
every herbstall in Rome: and, it is probable, that this is hinted 
at by Virgil in his " amaris fibris." — Pliny celebrates it as a 
wholesome herb, lib. XX. c. viii. 

* 3 See Hesiod Op. et Dies, from verse 42 to 52. 

" Surely there was some tradition even among the Heathens 
" of God's curse, that mau should eat his bread in the sweat of 
" his face." Sharrock's Hist. of Vegetables, c. i. 

Ver. 127, 128. 
-" * Ipsaque tellus 

" Omnia liberius, nullo poscente, ferebat." 

* Y^ocpitov &' ttyept Qsticjpos xpnqx 

Wvlo/j^xm 7roX\6v ts xocl atyQovov. 

Hesiod. Op. et D. ver. 118. 

Ver. 133. L34. 

" Ut varias * usus meditando extunderet artes 
'•' Paulatim." 


* This is usually rendered hore Experientia, but I should 
rather take the word iu its vulgar sense, for use and conve- 
niency : for Virgil certainly meansthat man being left to himself, 
the necessaries of life forced him to rack his thoughts and in- 
dustry to discover, by little and little, that variety of arts we 
have in the world. 

It may likewisesignify — frequent trial, or experiments — for in 
that sense Virgil uses the same word, Georg. II. ver. 22. 

" Quos ipse via sibi repperit usus." 

w Meditando, extunderet, paulatim :" Every word requires 
an emphasis. 

Ver. 143. 
" Tum * ferri rigor, atque argutae lamina serrae." 

* How much more beautiful are these expressions than if he 
had said, " ferrum rigidum et arguta serra ?"" 

Ver. 145. 
' ' Labor omnia vicit 

" Improbus." 

* Continuus. 

" Ingenti fruor, improboque somno, 
" Quem nec tertia saepe rumpit hora; 
" Et totum mihi nunc repono, quicquid 
" Ter denos vigilaveram per annos." 

Mart. Lib. XII. Ep. xviii. 

Ver. 147—149. 

" Prima Ceres ferro mortales vertere terram 

" Instituit: cum jam glandes atque arbuta sacrae 

" Deficerent sylvae, etvictum* Dodona negaret." 

* " Primis frugibus altrix Dodona." 

Lucan. Lib. VI. ver. 426. 

Ver. 150—154. 

" Mox et frumentis labor additus : ut mala culmos 
" Esset robigo, segnisque *' horreret in arvis 
" Carduus: intereunt segetes, subit aspera sylva, 
" Lappaeque * 2 tribulique . interque nitentia culta 
" Infelix * 3 lolium et steriles dominantur * 4 avenae." 

** Dr. Martyn well observes, that Horreret is very properly 
applied to the Thistle, which is horribly armed all over with 
prickles. His interpretation of segnis is not so easy. He ven- 
tures, he says, with Mr. Benson, to translate it lazy, believing 
Virgil called the Thistle lazy, because none but a lazy husband- 


man would suffer so pernicious a weed to infest his corn. This 
is a new sort of metaphor I am not acquainted with. — May not 
segnis be put by way o f apposition to horreret ? a worthless 
good-for-nothing weed, looking fierce and making a terrible 
figure, is a good contrast. 

* 2 Tribulus is a sort of thistle, so called probably uno rpiuv 
/SoXwv : not that it has only three points, but which ever way it 
points, it shews three spears. In like manner as the Tribulus 
used in war, and described by Vegetius, hb. IV. c. xxiv. 

* 3 It is a common opinion in Italy that the Loglio, (or 
Gioglio, as the country people usually call it,) if mixed with 
the corn in making bread, especiallv that sort which grows upon 
the mountains, will make people mad. — Quaer. If the like opi- 
nion might not have prevailed formerly, and occasion this 
epithet infelix ? — * et + They are both like corn ; which is the 
worse, because the Lolium, in particular, is of a malignant 
nature. The antients thought it bad for the eyes. 

" Et careant loliis oculos vitiantibus agri ; 
" Nec sterilis culto surgat avena solo :" 

is part of Ovid's prayer, Fast. I. ver. 691. 

" Mirum est lolio victitare te tam vili tritico. 
" P. Quid jam ? S. Quia luscitiosus. P. Aedepol tu quidem 
" Caecus, non luscitiosus." Plaut. Mil. Glor. 

The modern Italians have yet a worse notion of it. They 
say of a Melancolico, " A mangiato di pane con loglio." — 
" Da questi mali effetti del loglio, abbiamo un proverbio che 
*' dice, Io non dormo nel loglio : che signifioa, Io non son 
" malordo." Note on Malmantile Racquistato, Cant. VI. 
Stan. 25. 

■* 4 Pliny in his chapter, " De vitiis frugum," says, " Primum 
" omnium frumenti vitium avena est, sicut ipsa frumenti sit 
" instar. Soli maxime coelique humore hoc evenit vitium." 
Hist. lib. XVIII. c. 17. 

Ver. 160—166. 

" Dicendum et quae sint duris agrestibus arma : 

" Queis sine, nec potuere seri, nec surgere messes. 

" Vomis et inflexi primum grave robur aratri, 

" sfc 1 Tardaque Eleusinae matris volventia plaustra, 

" * 2 Tribulaque, traheaeque, et iniquo pondere * 8 rastri : 

" Virgea praeterea ** Celei vilisque supellex, 

" Arbuteae crates, et mystica * vannus lacchi." 

% l The common Av T aggons in Italy, especially in VirgiPs own 
country, are still very heavy and move slow. Virgil gives 


dignity to them, and makes them worthy a place in his poem, 
by making them sacred to Ceres, alluding to the waggons used 
at her solemn feasts at Eleusis. The verse is suitable to the 
pompous procession ; and, as Mr. Pope finely observes, 011 a 
like occasion — 

" The line too labours, and the worda move slow." 

t With such majesty Virgil speaks, when he only orders the hus- 
bandmen to provide harvest-carts ! 

* 2 Pliny, reckoning up the different sorts of instruments 
made use of to rub out corn, mentions the Tribulum among 
others. " Messis alibi tribulis in area, alibi equarum gressibus 
" exteritur, alibi perticis flagellatur." Lib. XVIII. c. xxx. 

See Mons. Thevenofs account of the sledge, now made use of 
in Persia, for rubbing corn out of the ear, ^n his Voyages. 

See likewise a description and draught of the same in Paul 
Lucas^s Journey from Constantinople to Adrianople, Tom. I. 
chap. xxiv. of his Second Voyage. 

* 3 That the ancients commonly made use of rakes with iron 
teeth appears by a passage in Col. lib. II. c. xi. ; where, giving 
instructions about the sowing Medica, he says: " Quod ubi 
" feceris, ligneis rastris, id enim multum confert, statim jacta 
" semina obruantur : nam celerrime sole aduruntur. Post 
" sationem ferro tangi locus non debet. Atque, ut dixi, ligneis 
" rastris sarriendus, et identidem runcandus est." — This repe- 
tition of a particular instruction about covering Medica with 
wooden rakes shews that iron ones were commonly used for co- 
vering other seed. 

** See the account of Celeus the father of Triptolemus, 
Ovid. Fast. iv. 507. 

* The persons, who were initiated into any of the antient 
mysteries, were to be particularly good : they looked upon 
themselves as separated from the vulgar of mankind ; and as 
dedicated to a life of singular virtue and piety. This may be 
the reason that the Fan or Van (the Mystica Vannus Iacchi) 
was used in initiations : The instrument that separates the wheat 
from the chaff, being as proper an emblem as can well be, of 
setting apart the good and virtuous, from the wicked or useless 

part of mankind. 1 In the drawings of the antient paintings 

by Bellori, there are two that seem to relate to initiations ; and 
each of them has the Vannus in it. In one of them, the person 
that is initiating stands in a devout posture, and with a veil on, 
the old mark of devotion ; while two, that were formerly initi- 
ated, hold the Van over his head. In the other, there is a person 
holding a Van, with a young infant in it. The latter may sig- 
nify much the same with the Scripture-expression of entering 
kto a state of virtue "as a little child," (Mark x. 15.) as the 


Van itself puts one in mind of another text, relating to a par- 
ticular purity of life ; and the separation of the Good from the 
Bad. " Whose Fan is in his hand, and he shall thoroughly 
" purge his floor ; and will gather the Wheat into his garner, 
" but the ChafF he will burn with fire unquenchable." Luke 
iii. 17. 

Ver. 169—174. 

" Continuo in sylvis magna vi flexa domatur 
" In burim, et curvi formam accipit ulmus * x aratri. 
" Huic a stirpe pedes temo protentus in octo, 
" Binae * 2 aures, duplici aptantur dentalia dorso, 
** Caeditur et tilia ante jugo levis, altaque fagus, 
" * a Stivaque, quae currus a tergo * 4 torqueat imos." 

* J In the kingdom of Naples they sometimes call all the wood 
of the plough from the point of the handle to the share Ven- 
tale, by corruption from Dentale ; but properly it is that part 
only to which the share is fixed. 

The share is called Gomere, and is made with two corners 
jutting out, and rising in the middle with a back called Schiena. 

The plough used in seed-time is made with two ears, or side- 
boards, called Orecchie, which are necessary to turn the earth 
over the seed when sown. 

* 2 Palladius [one of the old Writers on Agriculture], speak- 
ing of the instruments of husbandry, describes two sorts of 
ploughs, the Simplicia and Aurita, and tells us, that the use 
of the latter was to raise the ridge higher and make a deeper 
furrow, in order to throw off the water in a flat deep country. 
" Aratra Simplicia : vel, si plana regio permittit, Aurita, 
" quibus possint contra Stationes humoris hyberni Sata cel- 
" siore sulco attolli." Lib. I. Tit. 43. 

* 3 Stiva is rather a foot-board on which tlie Ploughmen in 
Italy, even at this day, usually stand to guide the plough. 

'Tis probably so called a Stando. Vid. Columella, 1. I. 

c. ix. 2. " In re rustica nullo minus opere fatigatur prolixior, 
" quia in arando stivae pene rectus innititur." 

" Innixus stivae arator." Ovid. Met. 1. VIII. 44. 

Buris is that part of the plough which the ploughman holds. 

* 4 Q. If this does not mean when the plough comes to the 
end of a furrow? for then the ploughman is chiefly employed, 
" torquere aratrum:" and then, in the kingdom of Naples, he 
twists the cord round a stick fixed to the handle, and sits upon 
it, in order the better to turn the plough. See Columella. 

" Magna vi domatur ulmus — Alta fagus caeditur — Currus 
" torqueat" — are all expressions used to ennoble the description. 

This description of a plough, according to Servius's inter- 


Fretation of it, would not deserve great commendation, being, 
think, if we believe his comment, very lame ; for he makes 
the Poet omit entirely a prineipal part of the plough, which 
is the share, and describe another part twice, making Buris 
and Stiva to signify the same thing, viz., the crooked part of 
the plough, which is that which the ploughman holds. 

Ver. 178—180. 

" Area #' cum primis ingenti aequanda cylindro, 
" Et vertenda manu, et creta solidanda tenaci ; 
" Ne subeant herbae, neu pulvere victa * 2 fatiscat." 

#' Varro <nves the followins; instructions : " Aream esse 
" oportet solidii terra pavitam, maxime si est argilla, ne aestu 
" paeminosa, in rimis ejus grana oblitescant, et recipiant aquam, 
" et ostia aperiant muribus ac formicis." Lib. I. c. li. 

* 2 Fatiscere signifies sometimes to chop or cleave ; and some- 
times likewise to be fatigued, or worn out : in this place it may 
be understood in its largest sense, in both meanings. 

Ver. 183. 
" Aut f oculis capti fodere cubilia talpae." 

t This was the vulgar opinion. Galen knew otherwise : and 
the microscope has fully discovered it in our times. See Der- 
ham's Physico-Theol. p. 92. note (??i). 

Ver. 185. 
Populatque ingentem farris acervum 

" * Curculio."- 

# The common people at Lyons use the name of Gourgillon 
for a small brown fly, in shape like a beetle, which is fre- 
quently found in beans : in the other parts of France, they 
call it Calendre ; in English, Weevil. — Pliny calls this creature 
Gurgulionem, lib. XVIII. c. xxx- , 

Q. If this worm is not so called from its shape being formed 
like the gullet, which the word signifies in its primary signifi- 
cation? — See the figure of it in Redi, Tab. xv. 

Ver. 193—196. 

#* " Semina vidi equidem multos medicare serentes, 
" Et nitro prius et nigra perfundere amurca ; 
" Grandior ut foetus siliquis fallacibus esset, 
" * 2 Et quamvis igni exiguo properata maderent." 

*' Though Virgil uses the general word Semina, yet by the 
reasons alleged, " Grandior ut foetus," etc, he seems to 
mean Legumes only; and though Varro, lib. L c. lvii. says, 


that Wheat was sometlmes medicated, yet he intimates that 
this was done rarely ; and that it was chiefly practised for Le- 
gumes : — and Columella, lib. II. c. x. makes this passage relate 
to the Bean only. " Priscis autem rusticis, nec minus Virgilio, 
." prius amurca vel nitro macerari fabam, et ita seri placuit." 
And then adds these two verses, " Laetior ut foetus," etc. 
putting Laetior instead of Grandior. 

* 2 These two verses inmost of the editions are very ill pointed. 
There ought to be a full stop at Maderent, and only a comma 
at Esset. The mistake is owing to the not understanding the 
second verse, the meaning of which is undoubtedly this ; That 
one advantage arising from steeping beans in nitrous water is 
that they boil the sooner and grow tender over a little fire. — 
Palladius mentions the same effect: " Graeci asserunt fabae 
" semina aqua pridie infusa citius nasci, nitrata aqua respersa 
" cocturam non habere difficilem." Lib. XII. De re rust. 
Tit. i. — Q. If Maderent will not admit the construction, be- 
coming tender ? — Columella uses the word Madescere in the 
same sense on the like occasion, lib. XI. c. iii. where, giving 
directions how to manage the cabbage-plant in transplanting it, 
he adds : " Haec res efficit, ut in coctura celerius madescat ;" 
that is certainly, that it may be tender with less boiling. 

Ver. 197—200. 

" * ! Vidi lecta diu, et multo spectata labore, 
" Degenerare tamen ; ni vis humana quotannis 
" Maxima quaeque manu legeret : sic omnia fatis 
" In pejus ruere, ac retro sublapsa referri." 

*' This latter part of the precept. Columella observes, is 
more extensive. " Hoc non tantum de seminibus leguminum, 
" sed in totam agricolationis rationem dictum esse, intelligen- 
" dumest." Lib. 111. c. x. And to the same purpose, Lib. II. 
c. ix. in both which places he quotes these four verses. 

* s Columella, Lib. II. c. ix. having given instructions " de 
" medicandis seminibus, , ' proceeds thus: " Illud deinceps 
" praecipiendum habeo, ut demessis segetibus jam in area futuro 
" semini consulamus. Optimam quamque spicam legere oportet, 
" separatimque ex ea semen reponere." And much more to 
this purpose. And then adds: " Quia frumenta degenerant, 
" nisi cura talis adhibeatur." And concludes : " Ideoque 
" Virgilius cum et alia, tum et hoc de seminibus praeclare sic 
" disseruit : Vidi ego lecta diu," etc. 

Ver. 204—207. 

" Praeterea tam sunt * Arcturi sidera nobis 
" Hoedorumque dies fervandi, et lucidus Anguis; 



" Quam quibus in patriam ventosa per aequora vectis 
" Pontus et ostriferi fauces tentantur Abydi." 

* Pliny calls Arcturus, Orion, and the Hoedi, " horrida 
sidera." Lib. XVIII. c. xxviii. And Ovid, describing the 
terrors of his banishment, says : 

" Saepe ego nimbosis dubius jactabar ab Hoedis, 

" Saepe minax Steropis sidere pontus erat, 
" Fuscabatque diem custos Erymanthidos ursae." 

Trist. lib. I. Eleg. ult. 

Ovid declares, in the same Elegy, that he was in the Adriatic 
going into banishment in December. 

Ver. 210—211. 

" Exercete, viri, tauros, serite hordea campis, 
" Usque sub * extremum brumae intractabilis imbrem." 

* This must certainly mean, " to the very beginning of the 
" time properly called Bruma," not to the end of it, as com- 
monly rendered; for during that time no tillage was to be 
undertaken, which Virgil means by his Intractabilis. — 'Tis 
evident from Cato, Varro, and Columella, that the Romans 
were very scrupulous of sowing or tilling their ground in the 
dead of Winter. — Columella particularly, lib. XI. c. ii., speak- 
ing of the latter end of the month of December, says : " His 
" diebus qui religiosius rem rusticain colunt, nisi si vinearum 
" causa pastines, negant debere terram ferro commoveri. 
" Itaque quicquid citra id genus effici potest, id ab his com- 
" prehenditur, ut olea legatur, et oleum conficiatur," etc. — 
" Nonnulli etiam legumina serunt." Then proceeding from 
the Calends of January to the Ides, he says : " Per hos quoque 
" dies abstinent ten*enis operibus religiosiores agricolae, ita 
" tamen ut ipsis kalen. Januariis auspicandi causa omne genus 
" operis instaurent. Caeterum diflerant terrenam molitionem 

" usque in proximas idus. 1 ' According to the common 

acceptation of this verse, the word Intractabilis, which is very 
significant, would be very improper, to say no worse of it: and 
therefore, to avoid the force of it, Ruaeus renders it only 
Durae. " Usque sub extremum imbrem," may perhaps 

carry this image in it ; till you come near or under the very 

skirts of the Winter-showers. What Columella observes 

above, " Nonnulli etiam legumina serunt," explains what 
Virgil says afterwards, ver. 227. 

" Si vero viciamque seres," etc. 
Aboutthese sorts of seecl, which are of less consequence, they 


were not so scrupulous. They did venture sometimes to con- 
tinue sowing them till the middle of Bruma. 

Vek. 212—214. 

" Necnon et lini segetem et cereale papaver 
" Tempus humo tegere; et * l jamdudum incumbere aratris : 
" Dum * 2 sicca tellure licet, dum * 3 nubila pendent." 

* x Thisadverb is commonly joined to express great ardency, 

and Empressement, as the French call it. See other parts in 

Virgil; and Lucan. iv. 545. 

' ' Nec plura locuto 

" Viscera non unus jamdudum transigit ensis." 

* 2 Whilst the ground still contiiiues dry. This is well 

observed, especially with respect to Hordeum. — — " Hordeum 
" nisi solutum et siccum locum non patitur," savs Columella, 
lib. II. c. ix. And again : " Siligo et far adoreum post con- 
" tinuos imbres, si necessitas exigat, quamvis adhuc limoso et 
" madente solo sparseris, injuriam sustinent. Ordeum, si lutoso 
" commiseris, emoritur." 

* 3 Because the sooner it rains after sowing the better. 

" Ut semina consita rigataque imbribus celeriter prodeant et 
" confirmentur ante hiemis violentiam." Col. lib. II. c. xi. 


" Vere fabis satio: tum te quoque, medica * l , putres, 
" Accipiunt sulci, et milio venit annua * s cura." 

*' " Locum, in quo medicam proximo vere saturus es, pro- 
" scindito circa Calendas Octobris ; et eum tota hieme putres- 
" cere sinito." Col. lib. II. c xi. 

* 2 Annua, on account of Medica before named ; which, as 
Columella asserts : " Cum semel seritur, decem annis durat." 

Lib. II. c. xi. Cura too requires its particular emphasis ; 

for Columeila observes of it : " Fi'equenter exigit sarritionem 

et runcationem, ut herbis liberetur." Lib. II. c. ix. And 

Palladius directs : " Ut herbis liberetur assidue." Lib. IV. 
Tit. 3. 

Ver. 217, 218. 

* " Candidus auratis aperit cum cornibus annum 
" Taurus, et adverso cedens canis occidit astro." 

* Commentators are much divided about the reading and 
explanation of this passage. The common reading is Adverso ; 
which not being well understood, Ruaeus and others read Averso, 
but still are puzzled in explaining it. In my opinion, the whole 
difficulty lies in their making Canis the nominative case to 


Occidit, whereas I think it tlie genitive, the second verse re- 
lating to Taurus as well as the first, and then the whole will 
run thus: " Cum candidus Taurus aperit annum auratis corni- 

" bus, et occidit cedens adverso astro Canis." The design of 

these two verses is to shew the proper season for sowing Milet, 
and perhaps Medica too, which, in my opinion, Virgil says is 
from the lst of April to the Ides or 13th of the same month. 
That the beginning of April is signified by the first verse, 
" Candidus auratis," 'tis generally agreed ; and I think that 
the Ides are plainly meant by the latter, " Cum Taurus 
" occidit." But, to set this matter in a clear light, let us in- 
quire what was reckoned the time of the setting of Taurus, and 
what the proper season for sowing Milet. Columella, lib. XI. 
De re rustica, c. ii. (which is a sort of Farmer's Almanack) 
says : " Pridie idus Aprilis Suculae celantur." The stars in 
the Bull's head are hid from us the 12th of April. And, in the 
same chapter, directing what is to be done at the beginning of 
April, he says : " Milii quoque et Panici Uaec prima satio est, 
" quae peragi debet circa Idus Aprilis." Here we find Colu- 
mella and Virgil agree very exactly, both as to the beginning 
and end of the season for sowing Milet. The one directs simply 
as a Farmer, the other as a Poet. And as Virgil adorns his 
first verse by an allusion to the ancient sacrifices, in Candidus 
and Auratis Cornibus ; and by the latter expression points out 
the two bright stars which tip the horns of Taurus ; and like- 
wise hints at the etymology of the name Aprilis in the word 
Aperit : so he beautifies the second verse from the natural 
enmity between the Bull and Dog ; and represents the Bull 
when setting as yielding to his adversary the Dog, who still 
remains above as it were victorious. (See the Bull and the 

Dog on the Farnesian Globe.) Taking the two verses thus, 

the expressions are very poetical, and yet the construction easy, 
without distorting any word from its proper signification, or 
changing a letter. 

Palladius likewise, in his month Aprilis, tit. I. says, " Aprili 
" mense in areis, quas ante, sicut diximus, praeparasti, medica 
serenda est. , " > And, tit. II. " Nunc locis naediocriter siccis 
" milium serimus et panicum. 1 ' 

Hesiod speaks of the setting of the Pleiades, and their flying 
the fury of Orion, as Virgil of the Bull yielding to the Dog. 

E^t' ccv riXr/i'a$Er, o~Qlvof o^qi/xov £lpicovos 
QsvysGzi, 'ojiT/lciJCiiv &s rispoeioex. TZOVlOV. 

Op. et Dies, lib. II. ver. 237. 

As Virgil before takes in the whole season for barley sowing, 
from the autumnal equinox to the fall of the winter rains ; and 
directs the season for flax, and poppy, as long as it continues 


dry after the equinox; so likewise here he sets down both the 
beginning and ending of the seed-time for beans, medica, and 

Ver. 219—224. 

" At si triticeam in messem robustaque farra 
" Exercebis humum, solisque instabis aristis : 
" Ante tibi Eoae Atlantides abscondantur # l , 
" Gnosiaque * 2 ardentis decedat stella coronae ; 
" Debita quam sulcis committas semina, quamque 
" * 3 Invitae properes anni spem credere terrae." 

# l Columella, in his tenth book of Agriculture, which is a 
poem on gardening, mentions these two constellations together 
in imitation of Virgil, and expressly declares, that he means the 
setting of the Pleiades in the morning, which he intimates to be 
near the beginning of winter : 

" Expectetur hiems, dum Bacchi Gnossius ardor 
" Aequore caeruleo celetur, vertice mundi, 
" Solis et adversos metuant Atlantides ortus." 

Columella in another place, explaining this passage of Virgil, 
tells us expressly, That this is about the ninth of the Calends of 
November. " Absconduntur Atlantides altero et trigesimo die 
" post autumnale aequinoctium, quod fere conficitur nono 
" kalend. Octob. Propter quod intelligi debet tritici satio 
" dierum sex et quadraginta ab occasu Vergiliarum, qui iit ante 
" diem nonum kal. Novemb. ad brumae tempora." Lib. II. 
c. viii. 

* 2 The brightest star of the Crown is the first of that con- 
stellation that sets, and therefore, perhaps, this ought to be 
rendered, " Ardensque decedat stella Gnosiae coronae." — Or 
it may be, that the whole constellation is termed ardens, be- 
cause it appears all the hot months. 

# 3 Several commentators have mistaken the meaning of this 
epithet. Virgil does not apply it to the earth as unwilling to 
receive seed at any time till forced by the plough, but he uses 
this word to enforce the meaning of Properes — As if he should 
say, that when the husbandman hastens to sow before the pro- 
per season, the earth, at such time, receives the seed unwill- 
ingly, for fear she should disappoint the husbandman, and not 
repav what is committed to her trust. The words Debita, 
Committere, and Credere, shew that Virgil alludes to a trust. 
— In the second Georgic, ver. 460, Virgil gives the earth the 
character of Justissima. 

Ver. 227—230. 
" Si vero ** viciamque seres, vilemque * 2 faselum, 
" Nec Pelusiacae curam aspernabere * 3 lentis ; 



" Haud obscura cadens mittet tibi signa Bootes : 

" Incipe, et ad medias sementem * 4 extende pruinas." 

*' " Viciae duae sationes sunt ; prima quam pabuli causa 
" circa aequinoctium autumnale serimus, secunda quam mense 
" Januario, vel etiam serius, jacimus semini progenerando." 
Col. lib. II. c. xi. 

* 2 " Circa finem Septembris faseolus ad escam seritur. Nam 
" ad praecipendum semen ultima parte Octobris, circa kalendas 
" Novembris melius obruitur." Lib. XI. c ii. — Virgil means 
only the latter sowing, what is intended for seed. 

* 3 Martial calls the Lens, Niliacam ; and " Pelusia mu- 
nera:" and says of it, that it was " vilior alga:" and to shew 
how vile and contemptible the Faba was, he says in the same 
place, " Carior illa laba." 

" Accipe Niliacam, Pelusia munera, lentem; 

" Viiior est alga, carior illa faba." Lib. XIII. Ep. ix. 

** What I have remarked above, ver. 211, shews this word 
to be very expressive. 

Ver. 259—263. 

" Frigidus agricolam si quando continet imber ; 
" Multa, fc 1 forent quae mox caelo properanda sereno, 
" * 2 Maturare datur : durum procudit arator 
" Vomeris obtusi dentem, cavat arbore lintres ; 
" Aut pecori signum, aut numeros t impressit acer vis. M 

** Columella directs the doing of these in the month of Ja- 
nuary, during the time that they were hindered from other 
work. " Mense Jan. ridicis vel etiam palis conficiendis ido- 
" neum tempus est." Lib. XI. c. ii. — A.nd afterwards, " His 
" etiam diebus maturi agni, et reliqui foetus pecudum, nec 

" minus majora quadrupedia charactere signari debsnt." Vir- 

gil's advice is more general. 

** As the genuine signification of Maturus is ripe, as fruit 
which comes leisurely to perfection, so Maturare is opposed to 
Properare — doing a thing in perfection, to hurrying it over 

f The Caesars impressed their whole names, at once, on 
their grants and letters ; and this was so common, that even 
the shepherds impressed their names on their cattle : 

" Vivi quoque pondera melle 

" Argenti coquito, lentumque bitumen aheno, 
" Impressurus ovi tua nomina ; nam tibi lites 
" Auferet ingentes lectus possessor in arvo." — 
Calphurnius, Ecl. V. ver. 85. See Georg. III. ver. 158. 




Th» was a sort of Printing ; and I wonder much how they 
came not to find out that art sooner : for it was as easv to im- 
press a whole line, as two words ; and a page, as a whole line. 
Had they gone but these two easy steps farther, it would have 
been just what the Chinese Printing is now. 

Ver. 264—265. 

" Exacuunt alii vallos, furcasque bicornes, 

" Atque * Amerina parant lentae retinacula viti." 

* Tria sunt genera praecipue Salicis, Graecae, Gallicae, 
Sabinae, " Quam plurimi vocant Amerinam." Col. lib. IV. 

C. XXX. 

Ver. 266, 267. 

" Nunc facilis rubea texatur fiscina virga : 

" Nunc * torrete igni fruges, nunc frangite saxo." 

* The Romans used to dry their corn on a kiln, before they 
gronnd it : and it is probable that they were obliged by an old 
law to do it ; for Pliny tells us, " Numa instituit far torrere, 
" quoniam tostum cibo salubrius esset. Id uno modo consecu- 
" tum statuendo, non esse purum ad rem divinam nisi tostum." 
L. XVIII. c. ii. And Ovid, speaking of the Fornacalia, says: 

" Facta Dea est Fornax ; laeti fornace coloni 

" Orant, ut fruges temperet illa suas." Fast. lib. ii. 

And Festus. — " Fornacalia feriae institutae sunt farris tor- 
" rendi gratia; quod ad fornacem, quae in pistrinis erat, sacri- 
" ficium fieri solebat." By which it is plain, that the Fornax, 
and Bakehouse, were differently used. They first dried their 
corn, then ground it, and then baked it ; the poorer sort on 
the hearth, the richer at the bakehouse. Virgil speaks only of 
the two former, which, he says, may be done in wet weather, 
when thev ai*e hindered from working without doors. The lat- 
ter must be done as there is occasion, whether wet or dry ; and 
therefore cannot be supposed to be mentioned here. — That it 
was a custom among the antients, to bake their bread in cakes 
upon the hearth, is plain from Ovid. Fast. 

" Suppositum cineri panem focus ipse parabat, 
" Strataque erat tepido tegula quassa solo." 

This we gather likewise from the widow^s cake in the Scrip- 

tures. In Wales, and several other places, they still make 

bread in this manner. Varro expressly directs the drying, and 
grinding or pounding of Far, in the winter, in order to have 
it ready for use, as occasion required : " Far quod in spicis 
" condideris per messem, et ad usus cibatus expedire velis, pro- 


" mendum hicme, ut in pistrino pisetur ac torreatur." Lib. 
I. c. lxiii. And again ; " Messum far promendum hieme in 
" pistrino ad torrendum, quod ad cibatum expeditum esse 
" velis." C. lxix. 

Ver. 268-272. 

" Quippe etiam festis quaedam exercere diebus 

" Fas et jura sinunt : rivos deducere nulla 

" Religio vetuit, segeti praetendere sepem, 

" Insidias avibus moliri, incendere vepres, 

" Balantumque % gregem fluvio mersare salubri." 

* Balantum has its beauty in this place, because sheep on 
washing bleat more than ordinarily : and Salubri is added, as 
Columella observes, because it was not allowed to wash sheep 
on hoJidays, unless " Medicinae gratia." 

Ver. 273-275. 

" Saepe oleo tardi costas agitator aselli 

" Vilibus aut onerat pomis : *' lapidemque revertens, 

" ^ 2 Incusum, aut atrae massam * 3 picis urbe reportat." 

*' I very much question whether Virgil means here a mill- 
stone. Ovid in his account of the Vestalia in his Fasti calls 
" Mola scabra et pumicea," which is a proper description of 
the roughness of a mill-stone, but " lapis incusus" gives us but 
an imperfect idea of it, and, I think, does by no means an- 
swer. Quaer. If it may not rather mean a mortar, or such 
like hollowed stone, in which the poorer people used to break 
their corn after they had dried it ? as appears by what is said 
before ; 

" Nunc torrete igni fruges, nunc frangite saxo." 

It is manifest, by the whole passage, that the poet is speaking 
here of the poorer sort of country people. 

" Ante inventum molarum usum, frumenta in pila commi- 
" nuebantur. Pilae autem erant vasa concava, in quae antiqui 
" siccata frumenta immissa pinsebant." Rosini Antiq. Rom. 
lib. I. c. xiv. 

* 2 The consumption of pitch formerly was very great, for 
pitching the inside of their vessels or jars for keeping wine, etc. 
as appears from several places in Columella ; particularly lib. 
XII. c. xviii. et xx. 

Ver. 281, 282. 

" Ter sunt conati imponere Pelio * Ossam 

" Scilicet, atque Ossae frondosum involvere Olympum.'" 

* This sort of versification is very noble and beautiful, when 

D 3 



used in a proper place. And it is manifest from that verse in 
the third book of the Aeneid, ver. 211. 

" Insulae Ionio in magno," 

that Virgil sometimes purposely afiected that irregularity, 
otherwise he would certainly have said, " Insulae in Ionio 
magno, 1 ' but the Hiatus makes it sound more grand. 

Ver. 289, 290. 

" * Nocte leves stipulae melius, nocte arida prata 
" Tondentur : noctes lentus non deficit humor." 

* " Noctibus roscidis foenum secari melius." Plin. lib. 
XVIII. c. xxviii. 

Ver. 291, 292. 

" Et quidam seros hiberni ad luminis ignes 
" Pervigilat, ferroque faces * inspicat acuto." 

* Quaer. If not torches cut in that manner on purpose to 
look into furnaces ? — Cato calls them Facnlas, c. xxxvii. 

Ver. 293—296. 

" Interea longum cantu solata laborem 

" Arguto conjux ** peixurrit pectine telas : 

" Aut dulcis * 2 musti vulcano decoquit * s humorem, 

" Et * 4 foliis undam * 5 tepidi despumat aheni." 

* J In great farms formerly they had looms to make the ne- 
cessary clothes for their labourers, as appears from several 
passages in Varro ; and Columella, lib. XII. c. iii. 

** Hereby is meant the making Defrutum, or Sapa ; and in 
this short description Virgil hints at the most remarkable cir- 
cumstances observed in making it ; and uses the epithet Dulcis, 
because thev chose commonly the sweetest wine for it. — " Mus- 
*' tum quam dulcissimi saporis decoquatur," says Columella, 
lib. XII. c. xxi. treating of the Defrutum. 

* 3 Because the watery particles evaporated. — Virgil, in this 

» " Vulcano decoquit humorem," 

affects the style of Lucretius, which is very proper to the sub- 

* 4 Pliny, speaking of this very subject, tells us, that the 
people strictly observed this nicety of using leaves to take ofF 
the scum. " Non nisi foliis despumandum ; quia si ligno con- 
" tingatur vas, adustum ac fumosum fieri putant." Lib. 
XVIII. c. xxxi. 

* J Because done over a gentle fire, which was not to touch 


the furnace with the flames. — " Levi primum igne et tenuibus 
" admodum lignis, quae cremia rustici appellant, fornacem 
" incendemus, ut ex commodo mustum ferveat," &c. Col. 
lib. XII. c. xix. 

Ver. 297. 
" At rubicunda *' Ceres medio * 2 succiditur aestu." 

*' " Antequam ex toto grana indurescant, cum rubicundum 
colorem traxerunt, messis facienda est." Col. lib. II. c. xxi. 

* 2 So " Supponat," ver. 348. The compound is used, in 
both places, to express the manner of reaping. See Varro. 
lib. I. c. 1. 

Ver. 302. 
" Invitat -j- genialis hiems, curasque resolvit." 

•f- Alluding to their Saturnalia, which answered to our merry 
time of Christmas. 
Thev had their Christmas jests too ; 

" Postulat ecce novos ebria Bruma sales." Mart. pref. to 
lib. XIII. 

— - " Jocos Decembris." Id. X. 85. 

It was a time of debauch ; 

" Et toto vinum nescire Decembri." 

Juv. Sat. VII. 
And of feasting ; 

" Acceptus geniis December." Ov. Fast. III. 

See the last poem in Statius's Sylv. lib. I. 

Ver. 304, 305. 

" Ceu pressae cum jam portum tetigere carinae, 
" Puppibus et laeti nautae imposuere * coronas." 

* Suetonius mentions this custom. " Forte Puteolanum 
" sinum praetervehenti vectores nautaeque de navi Alexandrina, 
" quae tantum quod adpulerat, candidati, coronatique, et thura 
" libantes fausta omina et laudes congesserant," etc. In Aug. 
c. xcviii. 

Ver. 316—321. 

" Saepe ego, cum flavis messorum induceret arvis 

" Aoricola, et * J fragili jam * a stringeret hordea culmo, 

" Omnia* 3 ventorum concurrere praelia vidi, 

" Quae gravidam late segetem ab radicibus imis 

" Sublime expulsam eruerent ; ita turbine nigro 

" Ferrethiems culmumque levem, stipulasque volantes.'* 



& 1 This epithet is very proper. Columella, speaking of barley, 
says, " Ubi paulum maturuerit, festinantius quam ullum aliud 
" frumentum demetendum erit, nam et fragili culmo, et nulla 
'* vestitum palea, granum ejus celeriter decidit." Lib. II. c. ix. 

* s See in Pliny and others the several ways of reaping. — See 
Ecl. IX. 61. note. — Quaer. If Stringeret does not imply the 
reaping in haste ? 

* 3 The Poet takes occasion here to observe, that the regular 
seasons are frequently interrupted by storms, etc. Pjiny in the 
same manner, after having discoursed " de temporibus serendi," 
proceeds thus — " Cum omnia haec statis sideribus coeloque 
" affixis constent, interveniunt motu stellarum (i. e. by the 
" planets) grandines, imbres, et ipsi non levi effectu, ut docui- 
" mus, turbantque conceptae spei ordinem. — Ideo Virgilius 
" errantium quoque siderum rationem ediscendam praecipit, 
" admonens observandum frigidae Saturni stellae transitum." 
Lib. XVIII. c. xxv. 

Ver. 328—333. 

" Ipse pater, media nimborum in nocte,-f* corusca 
" Fulmina molitur dextra: quo maxima motu 
" Terra tremit: fugere ferae, et mortalia corda 
" Per gentes humilis stravit pavor : ille flagranti 
" Aut Atho, aut Rhodopen, aut alta Ceraunia telo 
" Dejicit: ingeminant Austri, et densissimus imber." 

T This is supposed to be taken from some antient painting. 
See Pol. VI. 36. 

Ver. 335—337. 

". *' Hoc metuens, coeli * 2 menses et sidera serva; 
" * 3 Frigida Saturni sese quo stella receptet : 
" Quos ignis coeli Cylennius erret in orbes." 

** By these three verses Virgil advises the countrymen to 
observe the twelve signs of the zodiac, and the other constella- 
tions, and likewise the planets. — That Pliny understcod him in 
this sense, 1 think, plainly appears from the beginning of the 
twenty-fifth chapter of his eighteenth book. See note * s on 
ver. 318. anteh. 

* a A very pretty expression for the twelve signs. 

* 3 This epithet is given to Saturn, because he was supposed 
by the antients to preside over cold. The Aegyptian priest in 
Lucan, explaining to Caesar the different powers of the hea- 
venly bodies, says ; 

" Friffida Saturno glacies et zona nivalis 
" Ceissit; habet ventos, incertaque fulmine Mavors." 

Phars. X. 205. 


V ER . 347—350. 

Neque ante 

" Falcem maturis quisquam *' supponat aristis, 

" Quam Cereri, torta redimitus teinpora -*- 2 quercu, 

" Det motus incompositos et ** carmina dicat. 

. *' See second note on ver. 297. 

* 2 The worship liere directed must be diiferent from the 
Ambarvalia, just before mentioned by Virgil. For that feast, 
we find, was, 

" Extremae sub casum hiemis ; 

whereas this -vvas just before harvest, when they adorned them- 
selves with garlands of oak. 

I have seen the Florentine peasants in the month of Julv 
dancing and singing, in the manner here described, crowned witn 
garlands of oak. 

* 3 Horace tells us, that Poetry in Italy began first at their 
harvest feasts. Lib. II. Ep. i. ver. 139. 

" Agricolae prisci, fortes, parvoque beati, x. r. X. 

Ver. 379, 380. 
" & 1 Saepius et tectis penetralibus extulit ova 
" Angustum formica terens iter ; et bibit * 2 ingens 
" Arcus." 

*' The emphasis, as I take it, is to be laid upon saepius. The 
observation relating to the hurry ants are in, against bad 
weather ; when they run out and in, and carry their eggs back- 
ward and forward, several times. 

" Imperfecto complectitur aera gyro 

" Arcus, vix ulla variatus luce colorem, 

" Oceanumque bibit." Lucan. Phars. lib. IV. ver. 79. 

Wheve the bow is represented as dark, and cloudy, and imper- 
fect; portending an inundation. s 

It is now a common opinion that the rainbow sometimes por- 
tends fair weather, at other times rain. The like opinion pre- 
vailed among the antients ; and when the bow appeared dark 
and watery at either end towards the horizon, then they said, 
" bibit arcus." — Plautus makes one of his actors, on seeing a 
crooked old woman drinking, say very humorously ; 

" Ecce autem bibit arcus, pluet, credo hercle hodie." 

Curcul. act. I. 

Seneca in his Nat. Quaest. lib. I. cap. vi. confirms Avhat is 
said, that the rainbow sometimes portended rain, sometimes fair 
r weather. — 



Ver. 388, 389. 

" Tum cornix* plena pluviam vocat improba voce; 
" Et sola in sicca secum spatiatur arena." 

* Servius reads it raucd. — Pliny observes of the Corvi, 
" Pessima eorum significatio, cum glutiunt vocem, velut stran- 
" gulati." Lib. X. c. xii. 

Ver. 393, 394. 

" Nec minus ex* imbri soles et aperta serena 

" Prospicere, et certis poteris cognoscere signis." 

* Dr. Martyn reads eximbres, thinking this more poetical 
than the common reading; and says it is certain that Virgil's 
meaning could not be, that these observations are to be made 
during the rain, etc Withsubmission, I think that "ex imbri" 
does not necessarily signify whilst it actually rains, but rather 
immediately after a shower. During which interval one may 
judge whether the bad weather is like to continue, cr not. 
Virgil here gives us prognostics of the latter; and Prospicere 
plainlv intimates somethincr future ; and shews Virgil's meaning 
to be, when the weather is not quite settled, but going to change 
from bad to good. We find too afterwards, vers. 413, that the 
showers are but just over, when the ravens foretell a change, 
and promise fair weather : 

" Juvat imbribus actis 

" Progeniem parvam dulcesque revisere nidos." 

Ver. 395—397. 

" Nam neque tum stellis acies obtusa videtur, 
" Nec fratris radiis obnoxia surgere Luna : 
" * Tenuia nec lanae per caelum vellera ferri." 

* These fleecy thin clouds are signs of rain: " Si nubes ut 
" vellera lanae spargentur multae ab oriente, aquam in triduum 
" praesagiunt." Plin. lib. XVJII. c ult. 

As Virgil and Pliny call these thin clouds, " vellera lanae ;* 
so Ovid likens a fleece, carded by Arachne, to a cloud. 

Repetitaque longo 

" Vellera mollibat nebulas aequantia tractu." 

Met. lib. VI. ver. 21. 

Ver. 418, 419. 

" Jupiter humidus f Austris 

" Densat, erant quae rara modo; et, quae densa relaxat.'" 
t See Pol. xiii. 71 


Ver. 430, 431. 


" At si virgineum suffuderit ore ruborem 
" Ventus erit : vento semper rubet aurea # Phoebe." 

* The common epithet given to the Moon is Argentea ; on 
this occasion the Poet more properly and very prettily calls her 

Ver. 432-435. 

" Sin ortu in *' quarto (namque is certissimus auctor) 
" * 8 Pura, neque obtusis per coelum cornibus ibit ; 
" Totus et ille dies, et qui nascentur ab illo 
" Exactum ad mensem, pluvia ventisque carebunt." 

* J " Quartam Lunam maxime observat Aegyptus. Si splen- 
" dens exorta puro nitore fulserit, serenitatem ; si rubicunda, 
" ventos portendere creditur." Plin. lib. XVIII. cap. ult. 

* 2 M. Annaeus Seneca has quoted this passage at large in his 
3 d Suasoria, and all the editions of that author have it, " Plena, 
" neque obtusis." Yet, notwithstanding this ancient and good 
authority, we find in all printed copiesof Virgil the word Pura 
substituted instead of Plena. 'Tis pretended indeed by And. 
Schottus, that in Mss. of Seneca, he found the word, as in the 
printed copies of Virgil, Pura ; and contends that it ought to 
be so. But, besides the testimony of the best editions of that 
author, it seems evident, from the whole tenor of Seneca's dis- 
course, that he read the word Plena ; and the chief stress of his 
argument depends upon it. And therefore I make no doubt 
but this is the genuine reading; and, with submission, I think it 
likewise far preferable to the other. For Pura conveys no idea 
to us more than " neque obtusis cornibus ;" but Plena does. 
The whole of VirgiPs observation is this : When on the first 
appearance of a New Moon the horns are dim, and the space 
within the horns dark and black, then we are threatened with 
bad weather. But on the contrary, when on the fourth day of 
the Moon the horns appear sharp, and the space between them 
so bright (as may be observed in a clear sky) that the whole 
circle or face of the Moon is plainly distinguishable, which is 
the purport of Plena, then it portends gocd weather. 

Any one may easily perceive, that the word in this place is 
very expressive, and the opposition between " Luna plena" and 
" in ortu quarto" enlivens the thought ; and therefore, I sup 
pose, 'tis admired by Seneca as a shorter, more easy, and 
happier expression than what he quotes from Fuscus Arellius: 
" Luna, sive plena lucis suae est splendensque, pariter assurgit 
" in cornua:" which is dull and languid in comparison of Virgil, 
and contains no moie in such a number of words than Virgil has 


expressed in one, but yet may serve as a good comment upon 
him. This seeming inconsistency between Plena and Ortu 
quarto might probably at first cccasion the adulteration ; some 
acute critics imagining, tliat Plena could by no means suit the 
Moon when but four days old. 'Tis true indeed it cannot in 
the common sense, but in the Poet's it does. And if this was 
the occasion of the alteration, 1 hope what appeared to them a 

solecism will be thought a real beauty. f I have often ob- 

served this appearance spoken of by Mr. Holdsworth, and that 
sometimes on the third and fifth days of the New Moon, as well 
as on the fourth. Virgil had, no doubt, often seen the same ; 
but he instances in the fourth, as its being a surer sign of fair 
weather than any of the other ; (" namque is certissimus auc- 
" tor.") It may be a surer sign in Italy too, than it is with 
us ; for 1 have scarce ever found it to hold good, as to its pre- 

diction, in our moister air and more inconstant climate. Mr. 

Holdsworth's reason foraltering the word Pura, depends wholly 
on the reading of the verse in Seneca. It might perhaps be 
said, on the other side, that Valerius Flaccus, in a verse (in 
which he seems to have had this line of Virgil in his eye) uses 
the word Pura : it is in the second book of his Argonautics : 

" Micat immutabile coelum ; 

" Puraque, nec gravido surrexit Cynthia cornu :" 

But an imitation is not near so full a proof, as a quotation ; and 
of the two, Val. Flaccus is farther removed from the time of the 
flrst edition of VirgiPs works, than Seneca. 

Ver. 461—463. 

" Denique, quid Vesper serus vehat ; unde serenas 
" Ventus agat nubes ; quid * cogitet humidus Auster; 
" Sol tibi signa dabit." 

* The Poet here speaks of the South-Wind as a person having 
the command over the watery corner, and meditating whether 
he should bring rain upon the earth or not ; and supposes that, 
by frequent observations on the Sun, one may discover his de* 
sio-ns and enter into his thougchts. 

" Quid cogitet humidus Auster." 

Dr. Martyn, in a note on this verse, tells us, that Pierius 
says, some would fain read, " Quid cogat et humidus Auster ;" 
but that most of the ancient Mss. have Cogitat. 

Again, at the end of the 4th Georgic, he publishes some re- 
rnarks which he says were sent hitn, after the publication of the 
third Georgic, by the learned Edward King, Esq.; in a letter 
dated from Bromley in Kent. Among which is this following: 


" I never could be reconciled to, Quid cogitet humidus Auster. 
" I had rather read Cogat et, or Concitet, (contra oinnes Codices) 
" than Cogitet." 

For my part, I see no difficultyin animating the winds; Cogitet. 
There is no doubt but the ancients often described the winds as 
persons, which alone sutfieiently justifies the use of the word Co- 
gitet. And as the southerly wind generallv produces cloudy 
dark weather, and, as Virgil says in another place, " Contristat 
caelum," may itnot very properly be represented inathought- 
ful posture, likean old pensive fellow, on a damp gloomy day ? 
— In this sense Cogitet is an expression, which to me appears 

not onlv easy ; but trulv poetical and verv beautiful. ■ 

•f- See also Polvmetis, xiii. 13. on the passage. 

Ver. 471—473. 

" Quoties Cyclopum effervere in agros 

" Vidimus undantem ruptis fornacibus Aetnam, 

" Flammarumque globos * liquefactaque volvere saxa?" 

* The Academy of Sciences at Naples, who may well be sup- 
posed to be proper judges of a just description of a burning 
mountain, take occasion to applaud this passage, in the account 
they published of theeruption of mount Vesuvio,which happened 
in the year 1737. They seem to think these words convev a truer 
and more lively idea of the torrents of a burning mountain, 
than any of the formal descriptions given by Virgil's inter- 
preters, or other writers : The matter thrown out at such times 
being, as they observe, really liquid or melted stone. They 
particularly condemn Ruaeus's note on tliis passage, as not 
agreeable to Virgil or the truth ; and quoting his words, they 
add this angry censure: " Ex quibus manifestum est aptissimam 
" Poetae phrasin imperiti hominis temerario judicio in prae- 

" posteram explicationem esse deductam.' 1 See their com- 

mentary De Vesnvii oonflagfatione, published at Naples, 1738. 
p. 47. See likewise Borelli, De Incend. Aetn. p. 69. 

Ver. 476—479. 

" Vox quoque per lucos vulgo exauditi silentes 
" Ingens, et simulacra modis pellentia miris 
" Visa sub obscurum noctis : pecudesque locutae, 
" *Infandum! sistunt amnes, terraeque dehiscunt." 

d Virgil seldom or never mentions, such incredible stories, 
without an exclamation to denote his not giving too much cre- 
dit to the report. Observe, that the exciamation is the most 
proper that could be used on the occasiou. n 

** on the georgics. 

Ver. 481—483. 

* " Proluit insano contorquens vortice sylvas 
" Fluviorum rex Eridanus, camposque per omnes 
" Cum stabulis armenta tulit !"- 

*Thisis a short but noble clescription ofthe inundations of 
the Po: of which Virgil, who lived in the neighbourhood, must 
frequently have been an eye-witness. The first verseflows with 
strength and fury ; and the irregularity of Fluviorum adds a 
beauty in describing the violence of a torrent that knows no 
bounds. Lucan,lib. VI. expatiates mox*e minutely on the damages 
done bythe same river; but, according to custom, he knows not 
where to leave off. And though he has commonly too much rage, 
yet in this place, for want of judgment, he is very tame; where 

his fury, if ever, might have been pardonable. " Tum fiu- 

" mine toto Transit," is a very calm way of breaking down 
bounds, and overflowing a country. 

Ver. 484—486. 
■" Nec tempore eodem 

" Tristibus aut extis fibrae apparere minaces, 

" Aut puteis manare cruor cessavit; et alte 

" Per noctem resonare lupis * ululantibus urbes." 

*Thesound of this word, especially according to the foreign 
pronunciation, is expressive of its sense. 'Tis very raournful, 
and cannot be uttered without howling. 

Ver. 489—492. 

" Ergo inter sese paribus concurrere telis 
" Romanas acies iterum videre Philippi: 
" Nec fuit indignum superis, bis sanguine nostro 
" Emathiam et latos * Haemi pinguescere campos." 

* A large extent was given to this mountain, by the Antients ; 
and at this day 'tis called by the Italians, Catena mundi. 

Ver. 498—500.. 

" Dii-f-' patrii Indigetes, et Romule, Vestaque mater, 
" Quae -j* 2 Tuscum Tiberim *, et Romana Palatia servas, 
" Hunc saltem everso juvenem succurrere saeclo 
" Ne prohibete!" 

-J- 1 Beside less mistakes, our Mr. Dryden has made a very gross 
one, in his translation of this passage. Virgil, by the Dii Patrii 
here, means the great Triad of deities flrst received all over 


the East. ; and afterwards successively in Greece and Italy. 
These the ancient writers in general (from Herodotus quite 
down to Macrobius) usually call by the title of 0--ol YIxlpu>?i t 
or Dii Patrii. There is an endless variety of opinions, who 
these three deities were, who were so much revered in the East; 
and particularly in the island of Samothrace: but among the 
Romans it is evident enough that the three deities received as 
the three supreme, were Jupiter, Juno and Minerva: and there- 
fore Virgil adds the word Jndigetes, to fix it to the 0soi 
Ylalpuot, or the three great supreme gods, received as such 
in his own country. Indigetes here is much the same as Nostri 
in Juvenal ; where he is speaking of these very deities, (Sat. 
III. ver. 145.) They are therefore no less personages than Ju- 
piter, Juno, and Minerva (the tliree supreme among all the 
gods of the Romans), whom Dryden here represents Virgil as 
calling, — " Home-born deities ; of mortal birth." 

T 2 Mr. Holdsworth seems to have thought (as appears in a 
note which he has left imperfect), that there were two temples 
of Vesta in Rome ; and that this verse may point out the situa- 
tion of each: one on the banks of the river; and the other, 
near the gate of the Palatine Hill. 

* Virgil speaks of Tuscany and Rome almost as if they were 
bothupon the same footing,here and in other places; chiefly out 
of complaisance for his great patron Maecenas, who was de- 
scended from the old race of the kings of that country. 

Ver. 509— 5] 3. 

" Hinc movet Euphrates, illinc Germania bellum: 
" Vicinae ruptis inter se legibus urbes 
" Arma ferunt : saevit toto Mars impius orbe : 
" Ut cum carceribus sese effudere quadrigae, 
" *Addunt se in spatia." 

* Dr. Martyn owns this tobe the common reading, but chooses 
to follow Heinsius and Ruaeus in reading, "Addunt in spatio:" 
which he takes to signify, " They increase their swittness in 
the ring ; or run faster and faster." As if Virgil meant (as he 
says Grimoaldus understands him), that the longer horses run 
in a course the faster they go. With submission, I think the 
Poet has no such thought in view : what he chiefly intends in 
this comparison, at least in this part of it, is, as 1 take it, the 
eagerness and fury of horses. when thev first find themselves at 
liberty, as soon as the barrier is reinoved. To this he compares 
the mad licentiousness of the world, which he had before de- 
scribed, when loosed from the restraint of laws, upon the death 
of Caesar. " Effudere se carceribus" answers to " ruptis legi- 
bus" and " addunt se in spatia," to the first impetuosity of 


regained liberty or licentiousness. In the foot-race, Aen. V. 
Virgil calls this first Impetus, " Corripere spatia:'' 

-' ; Signoque repente 

" Corripiunt spatia audito, litnenque relinquunt." 

In which place 'tis plain, from "signo audito" and " limen re- 
linquunt," that " corripiunt spatia" can reiate only to the first 
Impetus after starting. Dr. Martyn understands " corripere 
campum" in the same manner, Georg. III. ver. 103. 

" Cum praecipiti certamine campum corripuere :" 

Which he well translates, " when the chariots have seized the 
plain." I think " addunt se in spatia," or " addunt se 
spatio," signifies much to the same purpose ; and therefore I 
take one of these to be the true reading. The chief difficulty 
lies in the word Addunt. Let us then only suppose it to be 
Dant, and then the expression would be easy, " dant se in 
spatia," they give themselves a loose. Addunt may be taken 
in the same sense, and with more force; for as this preposi- 
tion (in composition) not only implies nearness, but one of 
its known povvers is to enforce ; so here it has both significa- 
tions, and expresses not only their starting together as Qua- 
drigae, but serves to give a greater emphasis : and its intent is 
to shew with what violence they jointly seize the field. 



Ver. 4—6. 

" Hucf, pater, 6 Lenaee: tui9 hic omnia plena 
" Muneribus, tibi pampineo gravidus autumnq 
" Floret ager, spumat plenis vindemia labris." 

+ This was either part of an antient prayer to Bacchus, or is 
new made, for the use of the countrymen, by Virgil, in the same 
manner as Ovid has made one for them in his Fasti. They first 
desire him to favour them with his looking toward them, which 
they thought occasioned the fertility of their vines; and next to 
favour them with his actual presence among them in their la- 

bours, at the vintage. Mr. Holdsworth observes, that Mont- 

faucon has some figures relating to the latter, in his Antiquities. 
He was called Lenaeus from this, as Ruaeus observes, and Mr. 

Holdsworth provesfrom Diodorus Siculus. Tov £5 Sv Aiovuaov 

ertcXbovioc (meIx GipOLloTiio^H ■GsZiva.v rr,v o\xou[xivr,v $i$ji£cci Tr)v QvIhqlv 
rr\s dtA<ni\x x.%1 ~r\v iv raus \r\vois ceTroQXt-^iv ruv fiorquav, d§>' k 
Artvouov a.uTov ovoy.ct.a§r,v%i. Diodor. Sic. p. 138. 

Virgil reminds the husbandmen of praying to Bacchus to- 
ward the close of this book, as well as in the entrance on it. See 
ver. 529- 

Ver. 9—11. 

" Principio arboribus varia est natura creandis: 
" Namque aliae, nullis hominum cogentibus, ipsae 
" Sponte* sua veniunt." 

*Varro, lib. I. c. xl. says, " Semen, quod est principium 
oriendi, duplex; unum, quod latet nostrum sensum ; alterum 
quod apertum." And then proceeds: " Latet, si sunt semina 
in aere, ut ait Physicus Anaxagoras," etc. 

The antients might perhaps be of opinion, that all plants had 
not seed: Virgil seems to favour that opinion by his " Non ullo 
semine," G. I. 22. but that does not seem to be his meaning 
here. He mentions one (viz. Genista) which he must know to 
have seed ; and therefore I rather believe, he means self-sown 
plants, and adds, 

" Nullis hominum cogentibus," 

to explain his meaning. 


" Arbores, quas naturae debeamus, tribus modis nascuntur ; 
" sponte, aut semine, aut ab radice," etc. Pliny, lib. XVI. c. 
xxxii. And, in the beginning of the following book, he says : 
" Natura arborum, terra marique sponte sua provenientium, 
" dicta est: restat earum, quae arte et humanis ingeniis fiunt 
" verius quam nascuntur." 

Ver. 14. 
" Pars autem * posito surgunt de semine." — — 

* Posito, according to Catrou, in this place signifies fallen 
naturally : 

- — " Positas ut glaciet nives 

" Puro numine Jupiter." Hor. lib. III. od. x. 

I see not any occasion of limiting the word to that meaning, 
but understand it in the eommon sense. Virgi! certainly in- 
tends to bring under this head, all trees raised from seed set by 
hand; which he properly calls natural propagation, being so, 
or at least dictated by nature ; whereas under the next class, 
he reckons up only such methods of propagation as are purely 

the inventions of art, and discoveries made by experience. 

Under this first class are comprehended, lst, Trees that grow 
" sponte suaV as explained above: 2dly, Trees raised from seed 
set or sown : 3dly, All trees raised or growing from the suckers 

of the roots. These three sorts he repeats again from ver 

47 to 60, and shews how they may be improved, and what dis- 

advantage there ensues by leaving them to nature. 1 take 

therefore " posito de semine" to signify seed "set by hand," 
or set regularly as in nurseries ; in opposition to those just be- 
fore mentioned, which he says, 

nullis hominum cogentibus, ipsae 

" Sponte sua veniunt. 

And such trees as are raised from seed set by hand, belong 
properly to this class of trees raised naturally ; for though art 
is employed therein, yet nature shewed the way. 

" Hos natura modos primum dedit."- 

Virgil afterwards makes use of the same expression, " Positis 
seminibus," speaking of vine-layers planted out : 

" Seminibus positis, superest deducere terram 
" Saepius ad capita.'" 355. 

When Virgil speaks of seed scattered naturally or sown by 
hand without attention, or regularity, he makes use of the word 
Jactis : 


" Jam quae seminibus jactis se sustulit arbos 
" Tarda venit," ctc. 57. 

He observes that seed sown in that manner must degenerate, 
and therefore advises to set them regularly, as in nurseries : 

" Omnes 

" Cogendae in sulcum." G2. 

Ver. 16. 
* Aesculus, atque habitae Graiis oracula quercus. " 

* There is a species of oak in Spain, that bears a sweet acorn 
which the people eat as commonly as chestnuts. Quaer. If not 
the Aesculus ? and how called there?j 

Ver. 17—19. 
" Pullulat ab radice aliis densissima sylva ; 
" Ut cerasis, ulmisque : etiam Parnassia f laurus 
" Parva sub ingenti matris se subjicit umbra." 

t Strictly speaking, our Laurel is the Lauro, or Lauro Regio, 
of the Italians ; and our Bays, their Alloro: but our Poets, as 
well as theirs, use the words indifferently. Laurus was used too 
by the Roman writers indifferently, for the Laurel, and Bays. 
Pliny, speaking of the Laurus, says : " Duo ejus genera tradit 
" Cato: Delphicam et Cypriam : Delphicam, aequali colore, 
" viridiorem maximis baccis, atque e viridi rubentibus : hac vic- 
" tores Delphis coronari, et triumphantes Romae. Cypriam 
" esse folio brevi, nigro, per margines imbricato, crispam." 
Nat. Hist. lib. XV. c. xxx. sub initio. 

It was the Laurel or Laurus Delphica, with which their 
Poets were crowned: 

Sume superbiam 

" Quaesitam meritis, et mihi Delphica 

" Lauro cinge volens, Melpomene, comam." 

Hor. lib. III. od. xxx. ver. 1G. 

And it is hence the same Poet calls it Laurea Apollinaris, 
lib. IV. od. ii. 9. and Vireil here Parnassia. 


Ver. 23, 24. 
" Hic *' plantas tenero abscindens de corpore matrum 
" Deposuit sulcis ; hic stirpes * 2 obruit * 3 arvo." 

*' Not shoots or suckers from the foot of the tree, but slips 
from the young branches. — The word Tenero being added, in- 

l It is the Bellota,and is very g-enerally used for food by thepoorer peasantry, 
particularly in the Asturias.— Editor. 



elines me to prefer tliis meaning. Besides, Virgil comes after- 
wards, in a more proper place, to speak of the planting out of 
suckers, ver. 53, etc. 

* 2 Pliny speaks of this way of planting figs : " Optime qui- 
" dem nascitur ficus, si vastiore ramo pali modo exacuto adi- 
" gatur alte, exiguo super terram relicto capite, eoque ipso 

" arena cooperto." Lib. XVII. c. xvii. This is very well 

expressed by Obruit. 

* 3 " Arvum dicitur quod aratum necdum satum est." Var. 
De re rust. lib. I. c. xxix. 

Ver. 28,29. 

" Nil radicis egent aliae; summumque putator 
" Haud dubitat terrae referens mandare*cacumen." 

-:::- Some plants, may be set reversed with their heads down" 
wards ; and that this was known and practised formerly is plain 
from Columella, who gives particular orders not to plant olives 
so. — " Tiliae serra praecidantur, atque earum plagae utraque 
" parte falce leventur, et rubrica notentur; ut sic quemadmo- 
" dum in arbore steterat ramus, ita parte ima terram, et cacu- 
" mine caelum spectans deponatur. Nam si inversa mergatur, 
" difficulter comprehendet ; et cum validius convaluerit, sterilis 
" in perpetuum erit." Lib. V. c. ix„ — And; " Opuli melius ca- 
" cuminibus in arbusto protinus deponuntur." Lib. V. c. vi. 

Ver. 30,31. 

" Quin et caudicibus sectis, mirabile dictu, 
" Truditur e sicco * radix oleagina ligno." 

* I observed about Olioules, which is within a league of 
Toulon, and likewise on the road from Toulon to Hieres, that 
most of the olive-trees are shoots from the old stocks which suf- 
fered in the year 1709 ; some of which had tlieir heads cut off, 
others were cut down to the ground on that account. Most of 
these old stocks seem in appearance to be dead and look like 
rotten stumps, and yet bear very fiourishing young trees shoot- 
ing out all round them. 

T The same is often as surprising in our old willows; of which 
I have seen several (and particularly some in the Garden-Island 
in St. James's Park) which send down a tap-root from their 
heads through the trunk, that often seems entirely decayed ; 
and so form a young tree on an old stock, which looks as 
llourishing as the other does rotten. 

Ver. 40, 41. 

" O decus, 6 famae merito pars maxima nostrae, 
" Maecenas; * pelagoque volans da vela patenti." 


* Ruaeus has observed a seeming contradietion between tliis 
and what follows ; but Virgil means that he is going to enter 
upon a vast extensive subject, and by what follows declares that 
he will only enter or touch upon it, not launch into the deep, but 
keep within bounds. How extensive this subject was he again 
declares the last verse but one of this Georgic : 

" Sed nos immensum spatium," etc. 

In such a variety as the subject aftbrded, it required great 
art and judgment to choose what should be most proper, and 
digest the instructions into an agreeable order. He has hinted 
several of his precepts by one word only. And, that he might 
not be tiresome by dictating too many rules one after another, 
he has interspersed beautiful descriptions, and interwoven pro- 
per digressions. 

Volans, flying along with me, and hovering over me as my 
good Genius. This is more poetical than as Ruaeus interprets 

Ver. 47, 48. 

" Sponte sua" quae se tollunt in luminis * auras, 
" Infoecunda quidem, sed laeta et foi"tia surgunt." 

* Notwithstanding the several quotations brought by Dr. 
Martyn from Lucretius in favour of Oras, yet since Auras is 
equally intelligible, and as it is allowed that the best Mss. and 
editions read it so, I would prefer tjbat reading ; not only on 
account of what is urged by Fulvius Ursinus, but likewise 
because Virgil concludes a verse but just before with Oram, 
ver. 44. 

Ver. 55, 56. 

" Nunc altae frondes et rami matrk opacant, 
" Crescentique adimunt foetus, * uruntque ferentem." 

* Parch, kill So, 

— " Penetrabile frigus adurat." G. I. 93. 

And again, 

" Urentes culta capellas." G. II. 196. 

Ver. 63, 64. 

" Sed truncis * oleae melius, propagine vites 
" Respondent, solido Paphiae de robore myrtus." 

* Columella, having given directions about making nurseries 
of olives, and transplanting young olive-trees from the nursery 
to the olive-yard, says : " Quod si cum ea terra planta non 
" convenit, tum optimum est omni fronde privare truncum; 

E 2 


" atque levatis plagis, fimoque et einere oblitis, in scrobem vel 
" sulcum deponere. Truncus autem aptior translationi est, qui 
" brachii crassitudinem habet : poterit enim longe majoris in- 

" crementi et robustioris transferri." From fehis account it 

is plain Columella thought this the securer way of propagating 

olive-trees : and this is now much practised about Tivoli. 

N. B. Truncus was used to denote not only the body, but the 
limbs of a tree, as appears from Columella, lib. V. c. vi. where, 
describing the Tabulata of trees for vines to spread on, he says : 
" Hoc enim nomine usurpant agricolae ramos truncosque pro- 
" minentes," etc. 

Columella, in the book De Arboribus, cap. xvii. says : " Me- 
" lius truncis quam plantis olivetum constituitur." And then 
gives directions : " Oportet autem arbusculam deponei-e ita 
" rectam, ut quod a scrobe extiterit in medium sit." 

Ver. 67, 68. 

Etiam ardua * palma 

" Nascitur, et casus * abies visura marinos." 

* Q. If this ought not to be construed thus ? " Palma nascitur 
" etiam ardua ; item Abies:" i. e. they may be planted out, 
when they are tall large trees. This I take to be Virgil's mean- 
ing ; and is finely expressed. Tis certain that this is commonly 
practised with firs : Q. whether the palm will bear it? In the 
4th Georgic, Virgil confirms what he says here ; and makes his 
Corycius Senex put in practice, what he here mentions as 
feasible : 

" Ille etiam seras in versum distulit ulmos, 
" Eduramque pyrum," etc. 

Pliny mentions the transplanting the Abies with roots above 
eight cubits long : "'Apud autoi*es certe invenitur, abietis 
" planta cum transferretur, octo cubitorum in altitudine ; nec 
" totam refossam, sed abruptam." Lib. XVI. c. xxxi. 

Ver. 69—72. 

" Inseritur *' vero ex foetu nucis arbutus horrida, 
" Et steriles platani malos gessere valentes : 
" Castaneae fagus, ornusque incanuit albo 
" Flore * 2 pyri: glandemque sues fregere sub ulmis." 

*' Pliny mentions this passage, lib. XV. c. xv. " Virgilius 
" insitam nucibus arbutum, malis platanum dicit." 

The cutting off the last letter at the end of the verse adds a 
beauty to the epithet given to Arbutus. 

* 2 Palladius, in his book De insitione has a long article about 
the pear-tree, which begins thus : 


" Germine cana pyrus niveos haucl invida llores 
" Commodat," ete. 

These epithets are probably given in imitation of VirgiPs " in- 
" canuit albo" — and relate, one to the tree, the other to the 

Ver. 74-77. 

" Quii se medio trudunt de cortice gemmae, 

" Et tenues rumpunt tunicas, angustus in ipso 
" Fit nodo sinus : huc aliena ex arbore germen 
" Includunt, *' udoque docent * a inolescere libro." 

** It seems to me that by Udo is meant the plaistering used 
ih inoculation ; from whence this sort of grafting was as often 
called Emplastratio as Inoculatio ; as appears from Columella, 
lib. V. c. xi. where, speaking of several ways of grafting, he 
says : " Tertium genus est insitionis, quo arbor ipsas gemmas 
" cum exiguo cortice in partem sui delibratam recipit, quam 
" vocant agricolae Emplastrationem, vel ut quidam Inocula- 
" tionem." — And then describes this inoculation thus : " Alte- 
" rius arboris, quam Emplastraturus es, nitidissimum ramum 
" eligito; et ejusdem spatii corticem circumcidito, et materiam 
" delibrato ; deinde in eam partem quam nudaveris praepa- 
" ratum Emplastrum aptato ; ita ut alterae delibratae parti 
" conveniat : Ubi ita haec feceris, circa gemmam bene alligato, 
" cavetoque ne laedas ijosum germen. Deinde commissuras et 
" vincula luto oblinito ; spatio relicto, ut gemma libera vinculo 
" non urgeatur." 

* 2 Columella commonly uses the word Coalescere on this 
subject ; but, lib. V. c. x. he uses Inolescere ; probably from 

Ver. 78, 79. 

" Aut rursum enodes trunci * resecantur, et alte 
" Finditur in solidum cuneis via : deinde feraces 
" Plautae immittuntur." 

* " Arborem, quam inserere voles, serra diligenter exsecato; 
" ea parte, qua maxime nitida et sine cicatrice est." Col. lib. 
V. c. xi. 

Ver. 83, 84. 

" Praeterea genus haud unum, nec fortibus *' ulmis, 
" Nec * 2 salici * 8 lotoque, nec Idaeis * 4 cyparissis :" 

** Columella, lib. V. c. vi. De ulmariis faciendis, says thus : 


" Ulmorum duo esse genera convenit, Gallicum et vernaculum: 
" illud Atinia, lioc nostras dicitur. Est autem Atinia ulmus 
" longe laetior et procerior quam nostras, frondemque jucundi- 
" orem bubus praebet : qua cum assidue pecus paveris, et 
" postea generis alterius frondem dare institueris, fastidium 

" bubus affert." This may serve likewise to explain Virgifs 

" frondibus ulmi," ver. 446. posth. 

* 2 " Tria sunt genera praecipue Salicis, Graecae, Gallicae, 
" Sabinae, quam plurimi vocant Amerinam." CoL lib. IV. c. 


* 3 The celebrated Lotus was an African tree ; but, as Pliny 
tells us, they had the Lotus too very common in Italy, but very 
different from the other : " Et ipsam Italiae familiarem, sed 

" terra mutatur." Again he says, the differences between 

the several sorts consisted chiefly in the fruit. — That the African 
was as large as a bean, and grew thick like myrtle ; but the 
fruit of the Italian was like a cherry. Plin. lib. XIII. c. xvii. 

-:;:- 4 Pliny says of the cypress : " Duo genera earum — Meta iu 
" fastigium convoluta, quae et foemina appellatur : Mas spargit 
" extra se ramos deputaturque et accipit vitem," etc. lib. XVI. 
cxxxiii. See likewise in the same chapter, the reason of the 
epithet Idaeis. 

Veu. 85, 86. 

" Nec pingues unam in faciem nascuntur olivae, 
" Orchades %, et radii, et amara pausia bacca." 

* Columella reckons up ten different sorts of olives : Virgil 
names only three of them. It cannot be known for certain by 
what names they are cailed at present ; but this may be col- 
lected, from passages in Columella, that the Orchis and Radius 
were large olives, and useol chiefiy for eating ; the Pausia, a 

small olive, used commonlv to make oil " Pausiae oleum 

" saporis egregii — Orchis et Radius melius ad escam quam in 
" liquorem stringitur. — Omnisque olea major fere ad escam, 
" minor oleo est aptior." Lib. V. c. viii. And again lib. XII. 
c. xlvii. — From this account, it may not be amiss to suppose, 
that the Orchis answers to the Spanish olive, Radius to the 
streaked olive such as that of Languedoc, and Pausia to the 

Lucca or Florence oliv e. N. B. Columella, in this description 

of the several sorts of olives, says, " Bacca jucundissima est 
" Pausiae ;" whereasVirgil distinguishes it by " amara bacca:" 
in order to reconcile them, we must suppose, that Virgil speaks 
of the berry before it is pressed ; and the more bitter that is, it 
usually makes the sweeter oil, in which latter sense Columella 
calls it Jucundissima. 

georgic ti-k skcond. 55 

Ver. 91—96. 

" Sunt Thasiae vites, sunt et Mareotides #' albao; 
" Pinguibus, hae terris habiles, levioribus illae. 
" Et passo *Psythia utilior, -*- 2 tenuisque lageos 
" Tentatura pedesolim, vincturaque linguarn ; 
" Purpureae * 3 , preciaeque : et quo te carmine clicam, 
" * 4 Rhaetica? nec cellis ideo contende Falernis." 

*' " Dixit Virgilius Thasias, Mareotidas, et Lageas, complu- 
" resque externas, quae non reperiuntur in Italia." Plin. lib. 
XIV. c. iii. 

The Alexandrian or Mareotic wine from the lake Mareotis, 
near the city Alexandria in Aegypt, was much celebrated and 
very strong. Horace, speaking of Cleopatra, says : 

" Mentemque lymphatam Mareotico 

" Redegit in veros timores." Lib. I. Od. xxxvii. 

Strabo, speaking of Alexandria and the Lacus Mai-eia, says, 

El/OJVia TE EfJ TD"Sgt THS TOTCHS, Ul$Z KOU ^lCC)iiTa9ca ZTfOS to^CClWyiV TOV 

Ma§ajamv olvov, lib. XVII. 

" Quae Graeculae vites sunt, ut Mareoticae, Thasiae, Psi- 
" thiae sicut habent probabilem gustum, ita nostris regionibus 
" et raritate uvarum, et acinorum exiguitate, minus fluunt." 
Col. lib. III. c. ii. 

* The Vino Santo is now made much in the same manner as 
the wine from the grape Psythia here mentioned M r as made foi- 
merly. They gather the grapes when ripe, and spread them 
abroad, or hang them up, for some time, todry; and when 
they are become in some degree Raisins, they press them; and 
the juice inspissated by the evaporation of the watery parts, 
makes a very rich wine. 

* 2 Pliny, treating of the difFerent sorts of wine, says : " Vi- 
" num tenue et austerum celerius per urinam transit, tantoque 
" magis capita tentat." Lib. XXIII. c. i. 

* 3 Purpureae must signify here a particular species of grapes ; 
for Pliny says expressly, that Virgil has enumerated fifteen dif- 
ferent kinds of grapes ; and we shall not find this number right 
without reckoning the Purpurea for one : " xv omnino gene- 
" ribus uvarum nominatis, tribus oleae, totidem pyrorum." 
Plin. lib. XIV. Prooem. 

That Precia was the name of a particular grape appears 
fromthe same author : " Preciae duo genera magnitudine acini 
'] discernuntur, quibus materies plurima, uvaque ollis utilis- 
sima; folium apio simile." Lib. XIV. c. ii. 

■' Mediocri quoque solo foecundae, sicut pretiae minor et 
" major." Col. Lib. III. c. ii. 



* 4 The Vino Santo, and Aromatico, both excellent wines, are 
still macle near the Lago di Garda and Lago di Como, and in 
the Valteline, all which were within the territories of the an- 
tient Rhaeti ; for thus Strabo describes them : " Rhaeti usque 
" in Italiam protenduntur, supra Veronam et Comum." Lib. 

Servius tells us, that Cato celebrated the Rhaetian wine, and 
that Catullus condemned it. And he fancies that, as it was dis- 
puted whether this was a good wine or not, Virgil expresses 
himself in the manner he does on purpose to leave the matter 
still undecided. 

I rather believe that, as 'twas a favourite wine of Augustus, 
he means, he knows not how to celebrate it sufficiently. And 
though he says this out of complaisance to his Prince, yet still 
has that regard to the general taste as to give the preference 
to the Falernian. 

The excellence of this wine is generally allowed. Tibullus 
calls the " Falernus ager Bacchi cura." 

» ■ " Bacchi cura Falernus ager." Lib. I. Ecl. ix. 

Dionvsius Halicamesseus, speaking of the wines of Albano, 
says: " Excepto Falerno, caetera omnia vina bonitate longe 
" superat." Lib. I. 

And Varro : " Quod far conferam Campano ? Quod triticum 
" Appulo ? Quod vinum Falerno ? Quod oleum Venafro ?" 
Agricul. lib. I. c. ii. 

" Falernus ager" and " Vinum Falernum" are taken some- 
times in a more extensive, sometimes in a more limited sense. 
In the former sense, it reached from the Volturnus quite to the 
Liris, taking in the Massic hills, now called Monte Marso, or 
Montagne della Rocca. 

Ver. 97—100. 

" Sunt etiam Ammineae vites, *' firmissima vina ; 
" # 2 Tmolus et assurgit quibus, et rex ipse * 3 Phanaeus, 
" Argitisque * 4 minor : cui non certaverit ulla, 
" Aut tantum fiuere, aut totidem durare per annos." 

% l Firmissima are wines which will keep ; not liable to be 
prickt, or grow flat. Columella often uses this epithet for 
wines ; particularly book the Xllth, in opposition to Vina lan- 
guentia. That the Amminea vitis had this good quality in an 
eminent degree is evident likewise from the same, lib. XII. cap. 
xix. where, speaking " de pluribus generibus conditurarum 
" quibus vinum confirmatur," he prefers the Amminea vitis as 
the most effectual: " Quaecunque vini nota sine condimento 


" valet perennari, optimam esse eam censemus, nec omninoquic- 
" quam permiscendum, quo naturalis sapor ejus infuscetur. Id 
" enim praestantissimum est, quod suapte natura placere po- 
" terit. Caeterum cum aut regionis vitio, aut novellarum vi- 
" nearum, mustum laborabit, eligenda erit pars vineae (si est 
" facultas) Ammineae ; si minus, quam bellissimi vini, quaeque 
" erit et vetustissima, et minime uliginosa." 

** On the famous base at Pozzuoli, dedicated to Tiberius, 
on which are fourteen figures in grand relief, representing so 
many cities or provinces of Asia (with their proper attributes, 
and the name under each figure), that of Tmolus is represented 
as a Bacchus. 

This mountain was fruitful in wines even to a proverb ; as 
appears by Ovid: 

" Africa quot segetes, quot Tmolia terra racemos, 
" Quot Sicyon baccas, quot parit Hybla favos." 

Lib. IV. de Ponto, Eleg. penult. 

And Strabo says: " Sardibus imminet mons dives," lib. XIII. 

p. 625.—" Tmolus vino excellit." lib. XIV. p. 637. In the 

Pembroke collection is a bust of Tmolus crowned with grapes 
and vine-leaves. And Canini, in his Iconografia, plate xlix, 
gives us a medal in the cabinet of Monsig. de Massimi, repre- 
senting an old man crowned with a garland of grapes, with 
this inscription, TMHAOC. The reverse, he says, is a figure 
holding in its right hand an inclined vase, with an inscription, 
partly defaced, CAPAIANH. — Canini veryjustly remarks, that 
by this medal is represented the excellency of the wines of 
Mount Tmolus, near the city of Sardis. — This may serve like- 
wise to explain the latter part of this verse — " Et Rex ipse 
" Phanaeus:" — for by this is probably meant that Phanaeus 
had, or at least deserved, for his excellent wines, the same 
honours of statues and medals as well as Tmolus. In that sense 
the Ipse is very emphatical. 

Plutarch, and after him Tzetzes, place Tmolus in the num- 
ber of the Kings of Lydia. 

* 3 Phanaeus Rex signifies undoubtedly Chian, from Phanae, 
a promontory of Chios. See Stephanus Byzant. <&ccvai, 

*AxpcJIr]piov rr,s X/« , oi oiJCflTogcf, QoLvzioi. Servius says of 

" Rex ipse Phanaeus — De Lucillio hoc tractum est, qui ait, 
Xios- re "Svvdsns ; that is, olvos•. , ' 

* 4 Columella says of this : " Terrae mediocritate laetatur, 
" nam in pingui nimiis viribus luxuriat ; in macra, tenuis et 
" vacua fructu venit. Amicior jugo, quam arboribus ; sed 
" etiam in sublimibus fertilis vastis materiis et uvis exuberat, 
" humjllimis tabulatis aptior." Lib. III. c. ii. 


Ver. 101—104. 

" Non * l ego te, mensis * 2 et Diis accepta secundis, 
" Transierim, * 3 Rhodia ; et tumidis, * bumaste, racemis. 
" * 4 Sed neque quam multae species ; nec nomina quae sunt, 
" Et numerus : neque enim numero comprendere refert." 

** Having mentioned some of the most celebrated grapes for 
making wine, he descends to such as were used only for eating. 
And by this transition, " Non ego transierim," seems to in- 
sinuate, that though these were excellent iu their kind, yet were 
not to be had in equal esteem with the others, which were more 
necessary for life. Columella reckons tlie Bumastus, and Rho- 
dia, among the grapes for eating. 

x* « Alteris 

" Te mensis adhibet Deum." 

Horat. ad Augustum, lib. IV. od. v. 

* 3 Probablv, a very large full grape ; and therefore used 
for desserts. Pliny mentions it with the Uva uncialis, so called, 
as he observes, " a pondere acini," lib. XIV. c. iii. 

* Bumastus is the very large red sort of grapes, that they 
give you so perpetually in their desserts in Italy, and particularly 
at Florence. It has its name from its shape ; each grape being 
like the teat of a cow : Varro half latinizes the word, and calls 
it Bumamma. 

* " Tument mammarum modo bumasti." Plin. lib. XIV. 
c. i. 

* 4 Columella, quoting this passage, says: " Universae regi- 
" ones, regionumque pene singulae partes habent propria vitium 
" genera, quae consuetudine sua nominant ; quaedam etiam 
" stirpes cum locis vocabula mutaverunt ; quaedam propter 
" mutationes locorum a qualitate sua discesserunt, ita ut di- 
" gnosci non possint. Ideoque in hac ipsa Italia vicinae etiam 
" nationes nominibus earum discrepant, variantque vocabula." 
Lib. III. c. ii. 

Ver. 116, 117. 
" Sola India *' nigrum 

" Ferte benum, solis est thurea virga ** Sabaeis." 

* x Virgil uses this epithet for distinction sake, and it is in 
this place very necessary, the black ebony being the only sort 

valued. " Duo genera ejus; rarum id, quod melius, arbor- 

" eum, trunco enodi, materie nigri splendoris, ac vel sine arte 
" protinus jucundi : Alterum fruticosum, cytisi modo, et totS 
" India dispersum." Plin. lib. XII. c. iv. 

Lucan makes Meroe in Aethiopia the Mother of Ebony : 


" Nigris Meroe foecunda colonis, 

" Laeta comis Ebeni." Pharsal. lib. X. 303. 

Virgil seems in several places to use India in the larger sense, 
to signify Aethiopia, or any very hot eountry, as well as India 
properly so called. 

** " Ad meridiem ultima e regionibus, quae habitantur, 
" Arabia est: in qua sola omnium nascuntur thus, myrrha," 
etc. Herod. Thalia. 

" Thura, praeter Arabiam, nullis ; ac ne Arabiae quidem 
" universae: in medio ejus fere sunt Atramitae, pagus Sabae- 
" orum ; capite regni Sabota, in monte excelso ; a quo octo 
" mansionibus distat regio eorum thurifera, Saba appellata." 
Plin. lib. XII. c. xiv. 

Ver. 118—125. 

" Quid tibi odorato referam sudantia ligno 
" Balsamaque, et baccas semper frondentis acanthi ? 
" Quid nemora ** Aethiopum, molli canentia lana? 
" * 2 Velleraque ut foliis depectant tenuia * 3 Seres ? 
" Aut quos Oceano propior gerit India lucos, 
" Extremi sinus orbis? Ubi aera vincere * 4 summum 
" Arboris haud ullae jactu potuere sagittae: 
" Et gens * 5 illa quidem sumptis non tarda pharetris." 

*' Pliny, lib. XIII. c. xiv. adds to the passage quoted by 
Ruaeus ; That what the woods of Aethiopia produce much more 
resembles wool, than that of Arabia or the Indies : that it is 
contained in pods resembling a pomegranate, and that the tree 
is like the pomegranate-tree. — " Propior tamen huic naturae 
" lanae ; majorque folliculus, granati modo mali : Simijesque et 
" inter se arbores ijosae." 

* 2 See an account of Silk in Mons. Rollhfs Antient Historv, 
vol. X. last section. 

* 3 Silius Italicus makes the Seres the farthest people of the 
world eastward : 

" Jam Titan equos jungebat Eois 

" Littoribus, primique novo Phaetonte retecti 
" Seres lanigeris repetebant vellera lucis." 

At the beginning of the 6th book. 

* 4 Q. Curtius gives this account of the woods of India : 
" Alexander Poro amneque (Hydaspe) superato ad interiora 
" Indiae processit. Sylvae erant prope in immensum spatium 
" diffusae, procerisque et in eximiam altitudinem editis arboribus 
" umbrosae : Plerique rami instar ingentium stipitum flexi in 
" humum rursus, qua se curvaverant, erigebantur ; adeo ut 
" species esset non rami resurgentis, sed arboris ex sua radice 


" generatae." Lib. IX. § 2. And a little before, speaking 

of the Indian arrows, he says, they were so great and heavy, 
that upon Alexander's attacking Porus's army on a sudden, their 
arrows were of little use to them. — " Ne sagittarum quidem 
" ullus erat Bai'baris usus ; quippe longae et praegraves, nisi 
" prius in terra statuerint arcum, haud satis apte et commode 
" imponuntur." Lib. VIII. §47. 

* 5 Lucan, speaking of tlie Indians, says : 

" fortior arcus : 

" Nec puer, aut senior, lethales tendere nervos 
« Segnis." Lib. VIII. 295. 

Ver. 126, 127. 

" Media fert tristes succos tardumque *' saporem 
" Felicis * 2 mali*. 

* x " Citreis odor acerrimus, sapor asperrimus." Plin. lib. 
XV. c. xxviii. 

-:::-' 2 That the Malum citreum is here meant appears plainly 
from Pliny, who has given us an account of the Malus Assyria 
or Medica, lib. XII. c. iii. which is agreeable to this description 
of Virgil's. And he declares in another place, that this Medica 
is the Citrea malus : for he says, lib. XV. c. xiv. " Malorum 
" plura sunt genera. De citreis cum sua arbore diximus ; 
" Medica autem Graeci vocant, Patriae nomine." 

* I take it that Virgil here means the orange-tree, which was 
first brought into Italv, from Media, in his time. — As it was 
not yet generally known in Italy, he describes it by its likeness 
to a tree well known there, the laurel-tree. " Its leaves," says 
he, " resemble the leaves of that ; but have a finer and more 
" diffused smell ; and it is almost always beautified with flow- 
" ers." Pliny calls the orange-tree Malus Medica (as above) ; 
and his account of it agrees extremely witli this in Virgil. 

T Fracastorius has a very pretty description of the same, 
which may be worth inserting here : 

" Sed neque carminibus neglecta silebere nostris, 
" Hesperidum decus et Medarum gloria Citre 
" Sylvarum : si forte sacris cantata Poetis, 
" Parte quoque hac Medicam non dedignabere Musam." 
" Sic tibi sit semper viridis coma ; semper opaca, 
" Semper flore novo redolens : sis semper onusta 
" Per viridem pomum sylvam pendentibus aureis." Siph. I. 2, 

Ver. 136—139. 

" Sed neque *' Medorum sylvae, ditissima terra, 

" Nec pulcher Ganges, atque auro turbidus Hermus, 


" Laudibus f Italiae certent: non Bactra, neque Indi, 
" Totaque thuriferis Panchaia pinguis -*- 2 arenis." 

#' Obscrve with what art he introduces the praises of Italy, 
and his compliinent to Caesar: making the thread of his dis- 
course lead him to it, without seeming to have it in his view. 

T Compare this with Denis of Halicarnassus's Elogium of 
Italy, lib. I. c. viii. § 5.— Pliny, lib. III. c. v. and lib. XXXVII. 
c. xiii. — and Solin. c. viii. 

* a Columella, speaking of the land of Numidia and Aegypt, 
calls it " terram pinguibus arenis putrem. veluti cinerem soltt- 
" tam." Lib. II. c. ii. 

Ver. 149, 150. 

" Hic ver assiduum, atque alienis mensibus aestas ; 
" Bis gravidae pecudes, bis * pomis utilis arbos." 

* This, as Ruaeus observes, is generally thought an hyperbole, 
but without reason ; for besides what Varro mentions, lib. I. c. 
vii. " De malo bifera in agro Consentino," several other authors 
assert the same, as suflicient justifications of the poet. Arid I 
remember to have seen a vine at Iscliia, which I was assured ^ 
bore grapes three times in the year ; and is therefore called Uva 
di tre volte 1'anno. It had ripe grapes in August ; others turn- 
ing, which would be ripe in October ; and others quite green 
and small, which I was informed would be ripe in December or 
January. — This corresponds with what Pliny affirms, lib. XVI. 
c. xxvii. " Vites quidem et triferae sunt, quas ob id insanas 
" vocant ; quoniam in iis aliae maturescunt, aliae turgescunt, 
" aliae florent." — But, without enlarging further upon such 
singular instances aflirmed by other authors, we may observe 
that when Virgil mentions this particular in honour of the 
Italian climate, he expresses himself more modestly and accu- 
rately than other authors do. He does not afBrm that the trees 
are Biferae, or Bis parturit arbos, which perhaps may be 

doubted, but " bis pomis utilis." This is certainly true of the 

iig, which they have in great plenty, especially about Naples, 
jvt two distant seasons of the year ; (yiz.) at the usual time, at 
the iatter end of August, or September ; and likewise in May, 
thence called, from the season, Fico di Pascha. I was informed 
:at Cava near Naples, which place is celebrated for its figs, 
that tliev cover their trees with mats all the winter, by which 
means the small figs, which remained green on the tree in the 
autumn, are preserved, and ripen in the spring as soon as tlie 
trees begin to shoot, and produce those forward figs. - 

Columella, lib. X. reckons the Ficus among the Arbores 
biferae : 

" Tunc praecox bifera descendit ab arbore ficus." 


Ver. 154. 
* " Squameus in spiram tractu se colligit anguis." 

* This verse is admirably well adapted to express the 
thought. * 

Ver. 155, 156. 

" Adde tot egregias urbes, operumque laborem: 
" t Tot congesta * manu praeruptis oppida saxis." 

t Virgil, in his panegyric on Italy, among other instances of 
the happiness of that country, mentions their having so many 
towns built on craggy rocks and hills. There were more for- 
merly, and are several still. In the road from Rome to Naples, 
you see no less than four in one view, from the hill on which 
Piperno stands; reckoning that in for one of them. These were 
very useful, ofold, for defence, among such a fighting race of 
people: and are so still for coolness ; in so hot a climate, that 
they are generally forced to drive their flocks of sheep up upon 
the mountains for the Summer-season : as they usually feed them 
in the sheltered plains, or by the sea-side, in the Winter. 

-* Many of the towns in Italy stand on the tops of such high 
and steep rocks, that it seems impossible that any materials for 
building could be brought thither by carriages ; and, therefore, 
Virgil calls them " congesta manu." 

Ver. 161—164. 

" An memorem portus, * Lucrinoque addita claustra, 
" Atque indignatum magnis stridoribus aequor: 
" Julia qua ponto longe sonat unda refuso, 
" Tyrrhenusque fretis immittitur aestus Avernis?" 

* Cassiodorus, in his Chronicle, says, the Lucrine lake was 
turned into a harbour in the Consulship of M. Agrippa andL. 

Caninius, who were Consuls in the year of the City 716. 

According to Ruaeus's calculation, Virgil began his Georgics 
this very year. ^Whether he did or not, it is probable, at least, 
that he was writing them at the time that this port was making, 
or just after it was made, being then about 34 years old ; and 
therefore takes this opportunity to compliment Agrippa, and 
celebrate this work as one of the glories of Italy. 

t " Portum Julium apud Baias, immisso in Lucrinum et Aver- 
" num lacum mari, effecit." Sueton. in Auo-. 

Ver. 165, 166. 

" Haec eadem argenti rivos, aerisque * metalla 
" Ostendit venis, atque auro plurima fluxit." 


* " Metalla ejus regionis" (speaking of that pavt of Ilaly 
called Gallia Cisalpina) " hodie nott perinde magno studio tvac- 
" tantur, quia (puto) plus utilitatis ex Transalpinis Gallicis et 
" Hispanicis percipitur: olim autem magnae erant curae. Nam 
" et Vercellis aurifodina fuit et Ictomuli, quae vicina sunt Pla- 
" centiae oppida." Sti*ab. lib. V. 

The same author, speaking of a river which divides Aquileia 
from the Veneti, says: " Habet is locus Auri lavacra, et sectu- 
" ras ferri praeclaras." Ibid. 

Ver. 1 07—170. 

" Haec genus acre viriim, Marsos, pubemque * Sabellam, 
" Assuetumque f malo Ligurem, Volscosque verutos 
" Extulit : haec Decios, Marios, magnosque Camillos, 
" Scipiadas duros bello." 

* This expression, as Ruaeus observes, Aen. VII. 665, means 
either Sabines or Samnites ; but in this place it certainly means 
the latter, as Cluverius judiciously remarks. " Quum gravissima 
" et maxime diutina cum Samnitibus in Italia bella gesserint 
" Romani, haud dubium est, quin eam gentem non vero Sabi- 
" nos hic inter bellicosissimas Italiae gentes connumerare volue- 

" rit poiita." Cluv. lib. III. c. ix. Pliny says: " Samnitium, 

" quos Sabellos et Graeci Saunitas dixere, Colonia Bovianum." 
Lib. III. c. xii. And Horace probably means the same people, 
when, speaking of his own country, he says : 

" Pulsis, vetus est ut fama, Sabellis." 

If the Sabines were descended from the Samnites, and were of 
the same race, this expression of VirgiFs may include both. 

t " Assuetum malo;" Q. If not, laborious ? Certainly 
something in praise of them here, though he speaks of the Ge- 
noese as a deceitful people on another occasion, Aen. XI. 716. 

Ver. 170—172. 

" Et te, maxime Caesar, 

" Qui nunc extremis Asiae jam victor in oris 
" * Imbellem avertis Romanis arcibus Indum. - " 

* Compare this with Aen. VI. ver. 794, etc. — Virgil tells us 
expressly at the latter end of his Georgics, that Caesar was in 
Asia whilst he was writing them. 

This, according to Ruaeus and others, may signify, effeminate, 
not of a warlike disposition; but as it is intended as a compli- 
ment to Caesar, and as there is little honour in conquering an 
effeminate people, I rather believe that the word in this place 
signifies, " without war, without bloodshed." That is, Caesar 


by his presence in Asia so awed the Indians, that they threw 
down their arms, and submitted without daring to come to bat- 
tle. Silius Italicus, the great imitator of Virgil, pays the like 
compliment to Domitian with regard to the same people. 

li Huic laxos arcus olimGangetica pubes 

" Submittet; vacuasque ostendent Bactra pharetras." 

Statius, Sylv. IV. 4. and ver. 47. uses " imbelles" in the same 
sense. " Imbelles laurus:" Honours got without fighting. — 
Again, lib. III. Ecl. ii. 98. 

" Imbellis, tumidoque nihil juratus Atridae :" 

speaking of Phoenix, who attended Achilles without being en- 
gaged to fight. 

+ Vexatissimus hic locus omnium quotquot vidi interpretum 
artes omnes elusisse videtur. Frustra fuerunt omnium interpre- 
tationes et commenta, quibus Virgilium ab Augusti frigidissime 
laudati culpa absolvere conati sunt. Vulgo haec intelligi volunt 
de celebri illa Indorum legatione amicitiam Augusti petentium, 
a Strabone, Dione, Eusebio, Suetonio, Floro, Eutropio, et Au- 
relio Victore memorata ; sed, ut alia multa quae opponi possent 
taceam, non quadrat temporum ratio. Legationem enim illam 
non nisi post secundam Augusti in Orientem profectionem fuisse 
missam uno consensu tradunt historici, anno scilicet U. C. 733 
aut 743, et nono aut decimo postquam Georgica absolvisset et 
edidisset Virgilius. Neque credibile est hunc, qui in Aeneide 
perficienda tunc totus erat, Georgica de novo recensita post de- 
cem annos iterum edidisse, aut, si hoc etiam detur, notam tamen 
temporis hic inseruisse, quae ei plane contradicat qua liber ulti- 
mus, totum adeo opus, clauditur : 

" Haec super arvorum cultu pecorumque canebam, 
" Et super arboribus; Caesar dum magnus ad altum 
" Fulminat Eupraten bello, victorque volentes 
" Per populos dat jura, viamque aifectat Olympo." 

Ubi victor proculdubio est victor Antonii et Cleopatrae, et cum 
iis Aegypti et totius Orientis, nam ne bellum quidem ullum ab 
Augusto in secunda profectione susceptum, nedum victoriam 
ullam ab eo partam tradunt historici. Notanda etiam sunt 
verba ista, " viamque affectat Olympo;" non igitur jam Olym- 
pum sibi vindicaverat, nec in Deorum numerum jam relatus 
fuerat ; at notum est, post debellatum Antonium pacatumque 
Orientem, proximo statim anno, et templa sibi poni, et divinis 
se coli honoribus, passum fuisse. Rejecta igitur interpretatione 
illa haec referente ad legationem Indicam, quam nunquam co- 
gito quin mentem simul subit gemiua illa prorsus ac germana ad 


Ludovicum Magnum Galliarum Regem o Perslcle sub regni 
linem adornata legatio, videndum tandem ac tentandum an no- 
bis felicius successerit loci hujus explicatio. Primum autem per 
" Imbellem Indum" hic praecipue denotari existimo Marcum 
Antonium, Augusti de orbis imperio aemulum. Hunc enim 
Georgicorum librum post partam victoriam Actiacam, dum 
Caesar jam victor, ad Actium scilicet, adhuc in extremis Asiae 
oris, id est, circa Aegypti confinia, cum exercitu versabatur, 
et ante debellatum Antonium captamque Alexandriam, fuisse 
scriptum vel hinc constat, quod nunc avertere, id est, in aver- 
tendo occupari, non avertisse, Imbellum Indum dicitur Caesar. 
Hunc vero M. Antonium, indole sua atque ingenio jam ab ju- 
venta voluptatibus nimis deditum, deinde ex diuturna in 
Aegypto commoratione, ubi Cleopatrae lenociniis detinebatur, 
desidia ac luxu totum diffluentem, moribusque Aegyptiis et 
Asiaticis ad omnem mollitiem imbutum, enervatum tandem 
prorsus ac imbellem evasisse, testantur uno ore omnes qui illo- 
rum temporum historiam scriptis tradiderunt. Neque vero 
Antonium solum hic designari autumo, sed cum eo una Aegyp- 
tum et omnem denique Orientem, quippe cujus gentes fere 
omnes, quam late Romanum patebat Imperium, ejus partes 
amplexae essent, ac, si vicisset, praecipuum victoriae praemium 
ablaturae credebantur, sede scilicet Orbis Imperii Roma Alex- 
andriam translata. Hanc rem non parum illustrant quae alibi 
a nostro scripta sunt, ut Georg. I. ver. 509. 

" Hinc movet Euphrates, illinc Germania, bellum." 

Haec ante praelium ad Actium scripta fuisse, ex praecedentibus 
et sequentibus constat, et per Euphraten, Oriens et Antonii 
partes, per Germaniam, Occidens partesque Octaviani denotari 
intelliguntur. Ita in Aeneid. VIII. ver. 678, ubi acies utrinque 
ad pugnam instructas recenset noster ; ex una parte, 

" Hinc Augustus agens Italos in praelia Caesar, 

" Cum patribus, populoque, penatibus, et magnis Diis." 

ex altera parte, ver. 685. 

" Hinc ope Barbarica variisque Antoniusarmis, 

" Victor ab Aurorae populis et litore rubro, 

" Aegyptum, vh-esque orientis, etultima secum 

" Bactra vehit, sequiturque (nefas !) Aegyptia conjux." 

Et paulo infra : 

" Omnis eo terrore Aegyptus et Indi, 

Omnis Arabs, omnes vertebant terga Sabaei." 



At omnem de interpretatione nostra dubitationem plane tollere 
videntur ista Poetae nostri in Georg. III. ver. 26 — 29. ubi 
Augusti triumphos depingens ait, 

" In foribus pugnam ex auro solidoque elephanto 
" Gangaridum faciam, victorisque arma Quirini ; 
" Atque hic undantem bello, magnumque fluentem 
" Nilum, ac navali surgentis aere columnas," 

Hic Quirinus certissime est ipse Augustus, (vide Servium ad 

locum); et Gangaridum pugna victoriam ex Antonianis in 

Aegypto ab eo relatam clarissime designat, quae interpretatio et 

a facta statim Nili mentione connrmatur. Gangaridae enim 

verae Indiae populi circa Gangem habitantes, quibuscum Augusto 

nihil unquam rei fuit, aut esse potuit, utpote adeo longe ab im- 

perii Romani finibus remotis, ut ejus forsan ne nomen unquam 

audierant. Hic autem per figuram poetis familiarem, Indi 

universim sumpti denotantur, et cum eodem nomine vulgo etiam 

censerentur Aethiopes et Arabes, qui sub Aegyptiorum ditionem 

comprehendebantur ; hinc et Aegyptios hoc in loco intelligi vult 

Poeta. Nam sub Indiae appellatione complectebantur Veteres 

regioneseas omnes,quae trans Mare Mediterraneum sitae erant, 

etpraecipue Aethiopiam, Arabiam, Aegyptum, Parthiam, Per- 

sidem, interdum etiam Libyam et Palaestinam. Hoc dudum 

argumentis inVictis ostenderunt viri docti, Turnebus Adversar. 

XXI. 9. Cuper. Observat. lib. IV. cap. vii. Beausobr. in 

Bibliotheca Germanica, tom. XLI. p. 100 — 125. Freretus in 

Comment. Academiae Inscriptionum, tom. VI. p. 352. ut 

Huetium, J. Alb. Fabricium, Dickensonium nostratem, et alios 

taceam. Per arces Romanas hic intelligo, non, quod vulgo fit, 

in finibus Imperii Romani posita propugnacula, sed ipsam urbem 

Romam. Ita apud Horatium legimus, Od. I. vii. 5. " Intactae 

" Palladis arces," pro Athenis ; ubi vide et alia ejusdern lo- 

quendi formae exempla a Bentleio congesta ; Od. II. vi. 21, 22. 

" beatas arces," de Tibure ; Epod. vii. 6. " superbas Cartha- 

" ginis arces," pro ipsa Carthagine ; et apud Statium Sylv. 

1. IV. iv. 4. " Romuleas arces," pro ipsa Roma. At praecipue 

Montem Arcem et Templum Capitolinum in animo habuisse 

Virgilium mihi persuasum est, quippe in quibus contineri 

existimabatur salus et fatum Urbis et Imperii Romani. Vide 

Rycquium de Capitolio, cap. xlvi. Adeo utavertere ab Arcibus 

Romanis, idem hic valeafc ac avertere ab Imperio Urbis ac 

Orbis Rcmani occupando. Nulla autem majori clade affligi 

potuisse res Romanas, quarn si Antonius victoria potitus imperii 

summam tenuisset, et sub ejus auspiciis imbellis Indus Romae 

imperasset, omnes tunc temporis prudentes clare videbant. Ita 

Horatius, I. Od. xxxvii. 13. 



" Dum Capitolio 

" Regina dementis ruinas, 

". Funus et imperio parabat, 
" Contaminato cum grege turpium 
" Morbo virorum." 

Idem, Epod. ix. 7. 

" Ut nuper, actus cum freto Neptunius 
" Dux fugit ustis navibus," x. t. X. 

Ita Paterculus, XI. lxxxv. " Caesar Antoniusque, productis 
classibus, prosalute alter, in ruinam alter orbis terrarum, 

Propertius, III. ix. 29. 

" Quid, modo quae nostris opprobria vexerit armis, 

" Et famulos inter femina trita suos ? 
" Conjugii obsceni pretium Romana poposcit 

" Moenia,et addictos in sua regna patres. 

" Septem urbs alta jugis, toto quae praesidet orbi, 
" Femineas timuit territa Marte minas." 

Ovidius, Metam. XV. 825. 

" Frustraque erat illa minata 

" Servitura suo Capitolia nostra Canopo." 

Scilicet ab homine ignavo, otio ac mollitiis pene ultra feminam 
fluente, et qui se totum mulieri lascivae atque impotenti ad- 
dixerat, nihil aliud expectandum erat, quam certum Romano et 
imperio et virtuti exitium. Hanc pestem, jam cum haec 
scribebat Virgilius, ab arcibus Romanis, ab Urbe, Capitolio, et 
Imperio Romano, victor avertebat Augustus ; neque ulla laus 
ei gratior esse potuit, quam tam praeclari facinoris ab eo incepti 
commemoratio. Ita Epitheton, Imbeliis, hoc in loco laudes 
ejus adeo non minuit, ut etiam quam maxime augeat ; quanto 
enim imbellior Antonius, tanto major, eo depulso, gratia 
Augusto erat habenda. Adde, quod et exprobratio illa morum 
imbellium Antonio et ejus asseclis opportunissima erat, tum ad 
odium atque invidiam Populi Romani erga eum concitandum, 
tum ad affectus populares in amorem Augusti, qui dedecus illud 
Patriae tunc depellebat, conciliandos. Adeo ut nihil tunc tem- 
poris ad hujus laudes cumulandas magis aptum aut accommo- 
datum excogitari poterat, atque Antonii ista vituperatio. 

Denique et hoc animadversione dignum est, quod tradunt 
illorum temporum Historici, nempe Augustum semper prae se 
tulisse, contra Aegyptios et Cleopatram bellum se potius gerere, 

F 2 



quazD contra Antonium, et qui partes ejus secuti sunt Romanos, 
ideoque super illis, non autem super lus, supplicationes decerni 

VOluiSSC DlO. lib. LI. p. 457 . Ka» Ka»Ta(5t xa» sTEgx xa» £7TJV»K»a 

cus xa» rav Aiyvnlicuv ayaysiv zISogxV rov yxq Avlcoviov xa» tmv aXXny 

"w^aiHj T8f ccv sxitvco vixrjSsvJay, h7e i 7Tqo e lsqov, hts Tore, <is" xai 

Io§Ta^£»v o-^ay E7r' xvrois 5eov ov, covoixxaxv. Atque haec causa esse 

potuit, quod Virgilius nomen quidem Autonii, eo praesertim 
adhuc vivo, tacere maluerit, eumque cum caeteris ejus asseclia 
sub imbellis Tndi appellatione comprehenderit. Postea, eo 
mortuo, et Augusto lmperium summuin sine rivali obtinente, 
luinus huic erga nomen Romanum reverentiae indulgendum 
ratns est, ut viaere licet in Aeneide. 

[By the late judieions and Learned Mr. Heath of Exeter.] 

Ver. 179—181. 

" Difficiles primum terrae, collesque maligni, 
" Tenuis ubi argilla etdumosis calculus arvis, 
" PalladiS gaudent sylva' vivacis # olivae." 

# " Aptissimum genus terrae est oleis, cui glarea subest, si 
" superposita creta sabulo admista est.*— Creta ex toto repu- 
" dianda est. inimicus est etiam ager sabulo macer, et nuda 
" glarea." Col. lib. V. c. viii. — And again ; k ' Sed et densior 
" terra, si uvida et laeta est, commode recipit hane arborenv :" 
which answers to what Virgil observes also, speaking of ricli 
land : 

" Illa ferax oleae est." 

Ver. 182, 183. 

" Indicio est, tractu surgens oleastcr eodem 
" Plurimus, et strati baccis sylvestribus agri." 

* There is no occasion to confine this to wild olives, as most 
01 the commentators do. Virgil is to be understood in a larger 
sense, and means any sort of berries. The land which is proper 
for olives producing commonly several sorts of trees that bear 
berries, as well as tlie wild olive. 

Ver. 184—187. 

" At quae pinguis humus, dulcique uligine laeta, 
" Quique tVequens herbis et fertilis ubere campus, 
" Qualem saepe cavfi montis # convalle solemus 
" Despicere," etc. 

# Columella, speaking of land most proper for vineyards, says; 

Hyginus quidem secutus TremeHUun, praecipue montium 

kt ima, quae u verticibus defluentem humum receperint, vel 


" ctiam valles, quae fluminum alluvie ct inundationibus con- 
" creverint, aptas esse vineis asseverat, me non dissentiente." 
Lib. III. c. ii. 

Ver. 191—194. 
" Hic fertilis uvae, 

" Hic laticis; qualem pateris libamus et auro, 
" Inflavit cum * pinguis ebur Tyrrhenus ad aras, 
" Lancibus et pandis fumantia reddimus exta." 

* Virgil applies this epithet only to the Tibicines, who were 
observed to be commonly very fat fellows ; and might well be 
supposed to be so, being admitted to partake of all feasts and 
sacrifices. Whoever reads the story of the Tibicines in Livy, 
lib. IX. and Ovid's Fast. 1. VI. cannot doubt but that they were 
famous for loving their bellies, and that this was VirgiTs mean- 
ing. For we find, that they all quitted Rome in a body, and 
retired to Tybur, on an affront offered to their bellies : 
that they were brought back again to Rome by a drunken bout, 
and were persuaded to stay there only on condition that they 
should be admitted to eat at the sacrifices. And Livy in that 
very place severely taxes them as, " Genus vini avidum." — Ob- 
serve how one of them is represented in the Basso Relievo of a 

vase in the Villa Justiniani. See Virgil's like reproaches to 

the Tyrrheni in Tarchon's speech, /En. XI. ver. 732 to 740. 

Ver. 203—205. 

" Nigra ** fere, et presso pinguis sub vomere terra, 
" Et cui putre ** solum, (namque hoc imitamur arando), 
'* Optima frumentis." 

* Fere is very properly added, and is very expressive. Co- 
lumella observes, lib. II. c. ii. " Plurimos antiquorum, qui de 
" rusticis rebus scripserunt, quasi confessum nec dubium sig- 
" num pinguis ac frumentorum fertilis agri prodidisse nigrum 
" colorem, vel cinereum." Against whom he proves " a palu- 
" dibus, a campis salinarum, ab aliis locis, qui pigrum con- 
" tineant humorem, manifestum hunc esse errorem." — And con- 
cludes — " Non ergo color, tanquam certus auctor, testis est 
" bonitatis arvorum. Considerandum erit, ut solum, quod ex 
" colore destinamus, pingue sit." All this Virgil expresses by 
one word, Fere, and by subjoining " pinguis terra." 

* 8 Columella quotes this verse, lib. II. c. ii. and again, lib. 
V. c. iv. and in both places explains " Putre solum" by, 
" quod per se resolutum est:" and adds in the former place, 
" Neque eiiim aliud est colere, quam resolvere et fermentare 
" terram." 



Veii. 212—214. 
« .^ 1 Jejuna quidem clivosi glarea ruris 

" Vix humiles apibus * 2 casias roremque ministrat ; 
" Et tophus * 3 scaber." 

** Jejuna is properly added to Glarea here : and this seems 
to be purposely enlarged upon, and explained by Columella, 
lib. III. c. xi. " Solutam glaream, calculosumque agrum, et 

" mobilem lapidem probari, si tamen haec pingui glebae 

" permista sunt: nam eadem jejuna maxime culpantur." 

And again afterwards — " Cretosa humus utilis habetur viti : 
" per se ipsa creta, qua utuntur figuli, quamque nonnulli Ar- 
" gillam vocant, inimicissima est." 

* 2 Pliny describes it in the same chapter with Cinnamon, 
and theretbre it may be thouglit to belong to the same class, 
and is commonly rendered by interpreters Cinnamon, but per- 
haps improperly. Pliny says it is a Frutex as well as the Cin- 
namon, and that it came from the same country ; but with this 
difference, that Cinnamon grew on the plains, Casia on the 
mountains. And that whereas the bark of the Cinnamon tree 
was most valued, on the contrary, in the Casia, the bark was 
to be taken off, and the only valuable part was a thin skin. 
See Pliny, lib. XII. c. ix. It is this sort of spice Virgil un- 
doubtedly means, when he says ; 

" Nec casia liquidi corrumpitur usus olivi." 

Georg. II. 466. 

The Casia mentioned by Virgil in other places, particularly here, 
was some common sweet herb in Italy, as is well observed by 
Dr. Martyn. See his note on that place. 

-# 3 Tophus is a very rougli stone like the pumice stone, and 
therefore very properly called Scaber; it difiers from the pu- 
mice stone in weight. Vitruvius, speaking of the burnt stones 
and sand about mount Vesuvius and Baiae, says, " Ignis et 
" flammae vapor penitus per intervenia permanans et ardens 
" efficit levem illam terram; et ibi qui nascitur tophus exugens 

" est, et sine liquore." And in the same chapter he calls this 

burnt stone by the name of " spongia et pumex:" by which it 
is plain that he reckons tlie difference between the Pumex and 
Tophus to be this ; that the former is dry and without moisture, 
and consequently must be lighter than the Tophus. This stone 
is now called by the Italians, Tufo. There is abundance of it 
in the Campagna of Rome. 

Ver.217, 218. 

" * Quae tenuem exhalat nebulam fumosque volucres; , 
" Et bibit humorem, et cum vult ex se ipsa remittit." 


* These versos cntain a very nice description of tlie naturo of 
the Campania Feli.v, which has generally a thin mist hanging 
over it some part of the day ; which preserves it from being dry, 
though continually cultivated: And though there is scarce any 
running water over so large a tract, yet its own natural mois- 
ture (and that without dampness) still maintains it rich and fer- 
tile. Tliis thin mist flying like smoke from the foot of mount 
Vesuvius and the Surrentine hills over the Campania is so fre- 
quent, that it has often put me in mind of this description. 

Ver. 219—225. 

" Quaeque suo viridi semper se gramine vestit, 
" Nec scabie et salsa laedit rubigine ferrum; 
" llla tibi laetis intexet vitibus ulmos : 
" Illa ferax oleae est: illam experiere colendo 
" Et facilem pecori, et patientem vomeris unci. 
" Talem dives arat Capua, et * ] vicina Vesevo 
" Ora jugo, et vacuis * 2 Clanius non aequus Acerris." 

** However Gellius came by the story he relates, it is nou 
probable that Virgil ever thought of Nola in this place. The 
coast from Naples is very fruitful ; and as Virgil is supposed to 
have wrote this at or near Naples, and had this coast every day 
in his view, is it likely that he should pay this compliment to a^ 
distant town, and forget his favourite country ? — I doubt whether 
the land about Nola merits the praises here given; but if it 
does, it is comprehended under Clanius near whose banks it 

* 2 Cluver, lib. IV. c. ii. gives us the following description 
of the Clanius. " Amnis, qui medio fere situ inter Avellam et 
" Nolam exortus, ac dextra ripa Acerras oppidum, quod vulgo 
" nunc etiam dicitur Acerra et Cerra, praelapsus, tria ferme 
" millia passuum ab Cumis, cujus ruinae hodieque Cuma vocan- 
" tur, in mare se effundit vulgari nunc vocabulo II Lagno:" 
and in few lines, after having quoted this passage of Virgil, 
adds, " Certe hodieque totus hic amnis a fonte usque ad os- 
" tium ab utrinque paludibus clauditur: ideoque superioribus 
" annis Praesides regni Neapolitani varias hic egere fossas, quae 
" superstagnantes amnis simul et paludum aquas exciperent, 
" breviorique cursu inter Vulturnum et vetus Clanii ostium in 
" mare effunderent. Clanius est apud Acerras in Campania, 
" qui, cum creverit, meditatur pestem terrae." Vibius Seques- 
ter in catalogo Fluminum. 

Ver. 220-229. 

" Nunc quo quamque modo possis cognoscere, dicam, 
" Rara sit, an supra morem si densa, requiras : 


" (Altera frumentis quoniam favet, altera Baccho; 
" Densa magis Cereri; * rarissima quaeque, Lyaeo)." 

* " Quia densa radicibus ad comprehendum iniqua," Col. 
lib. III. c. ii. And further adds in the same chapter : " Hoc 
" in totum, ad illud quod vineis praecipue est idoneum, pro- 
" prie considerandum, ut prius retuli ; si facilis est humus, et 
" modice resoluta, quam diximus pullam vocitari." 

Ver. 246, 247. 

" At * sapor indicium faciet manifestus, et ora 
" Tristia tentantum sensu torquebit amaror." 

* See A. Gellii Noct. Att. 1. I. c. xxi. Sapor signifies both 
Smell and Taste — Savour. 

Ver. 248—250. 

" Pinguis item quae sit tellus, hoc denique pacto 
" Discimus: haud unquam manibus * jactata fatiscit, 
" Sed picis in morem ad digitos lentescit habendo." 

* This Columella expresses thus; " Illisa humo non dissipa- 
" tur, et quovis levissimo tactu pressa inhaerescit," and then 
quotes this verse, 

" Picis in morem," 1. II. c. ii. 

This he brings as a proof of fat land, and then proceeds to pre- 
scribe the other experiments, which seem to be almost copied 
from Virgil. 

Ver. 259— 264. 

" His animadversis, *' terram multo ** ante memento 
" Excoquere, et * 3 magnos scrobibus concidere montes ; 
" Ante supinatas Aquiloni ostendere glebas, 
" Quam laetum infodias vitis genus : optima putri 
" Arva solo : id venti curant, gelidaeque pruinae, 
" Et labefacta movens robustus jugera fossor." 

* l Here Virgil is giving directions for digging holes or ditches 
for planting vines ; and as the principal thing to be observed 
was to have the ground well mellowed and loose, this the Poet 
ineulcates in strong terms : saying, that the Fossor should be 
Robustus, and by " movens labefacta" the repetition shews that 
it ought to be much and well worked. He likewise directs 
laying the earth exposed to the north, that the cold and frost 
may mellow the ground. Columella treats at large of this 
head, lib. III. c. xiii. etc. and says ; " Non parum refert sus- 
" pensissimum esse pastinatum, et, si fieri possit, vestigio quoque 
" inviolatum: ut mota aequaliter humus novelli seminis radi- 


" cibus, quamcunque in partem prorepserint, molliter cedat t 
" ne incrementa duritia sua reverberet, sed tenero velut nutritio 
" sinu recipiat, et caelestes admittat imbres, eosque alendis 
" seminibus dispenset ; ac suis omnibus partibus ad educandam 

" prolem novam conspiret." He explains Pastinum thus : 

" Quicquid emoti soli vineis praeparatur Repastinatum vocatur." 
cap. xviii. — See Columella^ description of planting vines in 
holes, and likewise in the Quincunx, lib. III. c. xiii. 

* 2 " Si scrobibus aut sulcis vineam posituri erimus, optimum 
" erit ante annum scrobes vel sulcos facere." The Author of 
the book De Arboribus, usually ascribed to Columella. 

* 3 Dr. Martyn says, " he can hardly forbear thinking that 
" Virgil wrote Magnis, which will make the sense be, To cut 
" the hills with great trenches :" but proposes this only as a 
conjecture, for he owns it is Magnos in all the copies he has seen. 
It is reasonable to believe with the Doctor that Virgil, in imi- 
tation of Theophrastus, whom, as the Doctor observes, he seems 
to copy in this place, directs making trenches for planting vines 
very deep. This is still the practice in Italy; and so, I think, 
we may understand Virgil without altering Magnos. For if 
there is sufficient earth dug out of the trenches to raise large 
hills, consequently the trenches must be large too. Whoever 
has seen the manner of planting a new vineyard in Italy, will 
easily have an idea of the Poet's meaning in this sense : for 
the plainest fielcTat such a time is nothing but great hills and 
ditches. I propose this too only as a conjeeture ; but in favour 
of it one may further observe, that Dr. Martyn's other inter- 
pretation, (viz.) To cut the hills with great trenches, can pro- 
perly be applied only to vineyards on hilly grounds ; whereas 
Virgil's rule is general, and relates to all new planted vineyards, 
whether on hills or plains. And it is certain he is to be under- 
stood of both, for he says presently after : 

" Collibus an plano melius sit ponere vitem 
" Quaere prius." Ver. 274. 

Ver. 265—268. 

" At si quos haud ulla viros vigilantia fugit ; 
" Ante locum similem exquirunt, ubi prima paretur 
" Avboribus seges, et quo mox digesta feratur : 
" * Mutatam ignorent subito ne semina matrem." 

* Plants, from the rich nurseries about London, frequently 
suffer when transplanted. 

Ver. 274—278. 
' Sin pinguis agros metabere campi ; 

" Densa sere ; in *! denso non segnior ubere Bacchus. 


" Sin tumulis acclive solum, collesque supinos; 

" Indulge * 2 ordinibus: nec * 3 secius omnis in unguem 

" Arboribus positis secto via limite quadret." 

*' " Densa terra" is close land, the opposite to Resoluta ; 
in such land the roots cannot spread, and therefore vines may be 
planted close. 

* 2 " Indulge ordinibus." — Give a greater loose, more liberty 
to the vines, by widening the rows. 

* 3 " Nec secius."- — Nevertheless, (i. e.) as well in this way of 
planting wide, as in the other of planting thick, observe always 
to plant exactly at equal distances, for the reasons given after- 

Ver. 288—292. 

" Forsitan et scrobibus quae sint fastigia quaeras 
" Ausim vel * tenui vitem committere sulco. 
" Altiusac penitus terrae defigitur arbos : 
" Aesculus imprimis, quae quantum vertice ad auras 
" Aethereas, tantum radice in Tartara tendit." 

* This does not in the least interfere with the above-men- 
tioned rule of making deep trenches for planting vines. For 
though it might not be necessary to set the shoots deep ; yet it 
was requisite to make the trenches so, that the earth being 
loosened all round, the roots might have room to spread, and 
more easily receive nourishment. 

Ver. 298—302. 

" Neve tibi ad solem vergant vineta * l cadentem : 
" Neve * 2 inter vites corylum sere : neve flagella 
'* 4 a Summa pete, aut summas defringe ex arbore plantas : 
" (Tantus amor terrae !) neu ferro laede ** retuso 
" Semina : neve oleae sylvestres insere truncos." 

** Columella, lib. III. c. xii. says, " Quam regionem coeli 
" spectare debeant vineae, vetus est dissensio ; Saserna maxime 
" probante solis ortum, mox deinde meridiem, tum occasum : 
" Tremellio Scrofa praecipuam positionem meridianam censente: 
" Virgilio de industria occasum sic repucliante, 

" Neve tibi ad solem," etc. 

" Nobis in universum praecipere optimum visum est, ut in 
" locis frigidis meridiano vineta subjiciantur ; tepidis, orienti 
" advertantur." 

* 2 It is an observation of the learned Gassendus, that several 
plants are affected by others growing too near them: (e. g.) if 
you set white Hellebore or the herb Mercury near the Vine, 



the grapes will acquire a purging faculty, lib. De Plantis, 
cap. iii. Do facultatibus Plantarum. And Dodonaeus, lib. V. 
c. xxxvii. describing liis Raphanus Montanus, says, that it hath 
been found by experience, that this plant doth hinder the grow- 
ing of the Vine ; and being planted near it, doth cause the Vine 
to starve or wither away. — Pliny asserts the same : " Odit vitis 
" et caulem, et olus omne ; odit et corylum ; ni procul absint, 
" tristis et aegra," lib. XVII. c. xxiv. 

* 3 Here are two prohibitions ; lst, Not to take just the top 
of any branch for planting ; nor, 2dly, To choose the shoots 
from the top of a tree. Both the precepts are largely explained 
by Columella in a chapter entitled, " Ex qua vitis parte semina 
" eligenda sunt," lib. III. c. x. " Feracissima semina sunt, 
" non ut veteres auctores tradiderunt, extrema pars ejus, quod 
" caput vitis appellant, id est, ultimum et productissimum fla- 
" gellum ; sed id sarmentum quod media vite situm, non im- 
" portuna quidem parte deficit, ac numeroso foetu benignitatem 
" suam ostendit." Again for the other part, he says ; " Ma- 
" jores nostri etiam ex foecundo malleolo, quem ipsi probassent, 
" decisam sagittam repudiabant." — And again afterwards. 
" Sagittam, id est, superiorem partem malleoli, vituperandam 
" censebant." — And, c. xvii. he explains what Sagitta means. 
" Sagittam rustici vocant novissimam partem surculi," etc. 
And then giveshis reasons, why it should be rejected. 

" Defringe" has its force likewise ; and contains a third pro- 

* 4 Columella says, lib. IV c. xxiv. " Magnopere monendus 
" putator est ut prolixet aciem ferramenti ; et, quantum possit, 
" novaculae similem reddat." In the next chapter he describes 
the figure of the Falx ; and, in both chapters, speaks largely of 
the sharpness of it : which is too plain to be insisted on, or 

Ver. 319-324. 

" *' Optima vinetis satio est, cum vere rubenti 
" Candida venit avis longis invisa colubris : 
" Prima vel autumni sub frigora, cum *' rapidus sol 
" Nondum hiemem contingit equis, jam praeterit aestas ; 
" Ver adeo frondi nemorum, ver utile sylvis : 
" Vere tument terrae, et genitalia semina poscunt." 

Columella prescribes the same seasons, lib. III. c. xiv. 
" Vinea vel vere vel autumno tempestive deponitur. Vere 
" melius, si aut pluvius aut frigidus status coeli est ; aut ager 
" pinguis, aut campestris et uliginosa planities. Rursus au- 
" tumno, si sicca, si calida est aeris qualitas ; si exilis atque 
" aridus campus : si macer praeruptusve collis."— The reasons 


given a little before by Columella for allowlng liberty to the 
roots to spread, will hold strongly in favour of Virgil's rule, 
not to plant in Winter. 

" Rura gelu cum claudit hiems," etc, Ver. 317. 

* 3 This epithet is very properly applied to the sun at auy 
time of the year, but more emphatically so when the days are 
shortening ; for then he finishes his course sooner, and seems to 
be more in haste. This thought, which is here expressed in one 
epithet, Virgil expatiates more largely on, ver. 481. 

" Quid tantum oceano properent se tingere soles 
" Hiberni ; vel quae tardis mora noctibus obstet." 

Ver. 325—327. 
" Tum * Pater omnipotens foecundis imbribus Aether 
" Conjugis in gremium laetae descendit ; et omnes 
" Magnus alit, magno commixtus corpore, foetus." 

*- Thus Lucretius : 

" Pereunt imbres, ubi eos Pater Aether 

" In gremium Matris TerraT praecipitavit," 1. I. ver. 251. 

t And several of thePoets thatpreceded Virgil. See Pol. XX. 30. 

Ver. 130—334. 
" Parturit almus ager : Zephyrique tepentibus auris 
" Laxant arva sinus : superat tener omnibus humor : 
" Inque novos soles audent se gramina tuto 
" Credere : nec metuit surgentes pampinus t Austros, 
" Aut actum coelo magnis t Aquilonibus imbrem." 

t The antients seem to have imagined not only a principal 
Deity of the winds, for each quarter of the heavens ; but also a 
number of inferior ones, under each of the principal. See Pol. 
XIII. 37. 

Ver. 336—342. 

" Non alios prima crescentis origine mundi 
" Illuxisse dies, aliumve habuisse tenorem 
" Crediderim: ver illud erat, ver magnus agebat 
" Orbis, et hibernis parcebant flatibus Euri ; 
" Cum primum lucem pecudes hausere, virumque 
" * Ferrea progenies duris eaput extulit arvis ; 
" t Immissaeque ferae sylvis, et sidera caelo." 

*Di\ Martyn observes, that on the authority of Lactantius 
some read Terrea: but he supposes that it is an error in the 


copv of Lactantius. With submission, I think Terrea the true 
reading. For the Poet supposing that Gocl created every 
tliinp; in the Spring, because the world in its first infancy could 
not have resisted the violence of great heat or cold ; and, 
imagining that man sprang like a plant out of the ground, it 
would have been very improper for him to have used the epithet 
Ferrea on such an pccasion, when he was speaking of the ten- 
derness of man . 

t This seems to be oddly put together at first sight. " The 
" forests were stocked with beasts, and the heavens with con- 
stellations." It was not so in those times, when the constella- 
tions were generally considered as real animals ; many of them 
as men, but most of them as beasts. 

This consideration gives a strono;er lisrht to a g-reat number 
of passages in the antient Poets ; who represent the constella- 
tions in general as animals, with animal motions, and eyen as 
coming down on our earth. 

The prologue to Plautus's Rudens is spoken by Arcturus, as 
one of the Dramatis Personae. He tells us there, that all the 
constellations come down by day, to see how men act upon 
earth ; and to inform Jupiter every evening of their behaviour. 
This notion, however wild, may shew how much they consi- 
dered the constellations as detached, particular, animal beings. 

Ovid uses a manner of expression very much like that of 
Yirgil's above ; on the very same occasion : 

" Neu regio foret ulla suis animantibus orba ; 
" Astra tenent caeleste solum, formaeque deorum ; 
" Terra feras cepit." Met. I. ver. 75. 

Thus Statius calls the Sea-nymphs, the constellations of the 
sea ; (that is, the intelligent and divine inhabitants of the wa- 
ters, as the other are of the heavens) : 

" Antennae gemino considite cornu, 

" Oebalii fratres !- 

" Vos quoque caeruleum, Divae Nerides, agmen ! 

" Dicere quae magni fas sit mihi sidera ponti." 

Lib. III. Sylv. ii. ver. 15. 

The same Poet represents Aurora as driving the stars out of 
heaven, with a whip, like so many beasts: 

" Tempus erat junctos cum jam soror ignea Phoebi 
" Sentit equos, penitusque cavam sub luce parata 
" Oceani mugire domum: seseque vagantem 
" Colligit: et moto leviter fugat astra flagello." 

Theb. VIII. ver. 274. 


Manilius uses the word, Flock, in speaking of a number of 
stars; and represents them going on ' like a fiock of sheep, or 
any ot.her animals : 

" Cum secretis improvidus Hoedus in astris, 

EiTanti similis, fratrum vestigia quaerit ; 
Postque gregem, longo proclucitur intervallo." 

Astron. V. ver. 308. 

Ver. 346—353. 
Quaecunque premes & 1 virgulta per agros, 

" Sparge fimo pingui, et multa memor occule terra : 

" Aut lapidem bibulum, * 2 aut squalentes infode conchas. 

" Inter enim labentur aquae, tenuisque subibit 

" Halitus; atque animos tollent sata : jamque reperti 

" Qui saxo * 3 super atque ingentis pondere testae 

" Urgerent : hoc effusos munimen ad imbres ; 

" Hoc, ubi hiulca siti findit canis aestifer arva." 

* J Observe, he directs, " Spargere virgulta fimo, occulere 
" terra, etmulta," because little dung was to be used to plants, 
if any. Columella says, " M. Columella patruus meus doctissi- 
" mus et diligentissimus agricola negabat stercus vitibus inge- 
" rendum, quod saporem vini corrumperet : melioremque cense- 
" bat esse materiam vindemiis exuberandis congestitiam, vel de 
" vepribus, vel denique aliamquam libet arcessitam et advectam 
" humum," lib. II. c. xvi. Again 1. V. c. vi. " Vites depo- 
" sitas stercoremus (ut ego existimo), si minus, terra subacta 
" operiamus." 

* 2 Columella quotes this passage, and approves of the pre- 
cept, lib. III. c. xv. 

* 3 This is practised about Trani in Apulia, where they make 
excellent Muscat; and, if I mistake not, about St. Laurent in 

Ver. 354—357. 

" Seminibus positis, superest deducere *' terram 
" * 2 Saepius ad * 3 capita, et duros * 4 jactare bidentes : 
" Aut presso exercere solum sub vomere, et ipsa 
" Flectere ** luctantes inter vineta juvencos.' 1 

^ 1 Columella gives directions together, about digging round 

young vine plants, and taking off the leaves. " Primo quidem 

" anno, quo posita sunt semina, frequentibus fossionibus, omni- 
" bus mensibus, dum frondent, ac pampinationibus adjuvanda 

" sunt ; ut robur accipiant," lib. IV. c. x. And c. vii. he 

orders, the leaves to be taken off gently, with the fingers— ■ 
" Omnis pampinationis ea est tempestivitas, dum adeo tenen 
" palmites sunt, ut levi tactu digiti decutiantur " 


* 8 Columella, Bpeaking of the month of May, says, " Hoc 
" mense seminaria onmia crebro fodere oportebit : sed a ka- 
" lendis Martiis usque in idus Septembres omnibus mensibus 
" non so?um seminariis, sed etiam novcllis vineis danda fossio 
11 est." 1. XI. c. ii. And again, afterwards, he says, " De 
" fodiendk colendisve novellis vineis, saepius jam dixi nullum 
" esse men.sem omittendum, donec autumnale aequinoctium 
" conficiatur." 

* s Quaer. .If tliis does not mean ttf cover even the top of the 
young plants with mould ? Columeli3 directs the same, lib. 
III. c. xvi. where, speaking of planting }oung vines, he says, 
" Cum semen supra scrobem compluribus i.nternodiis produc- 
" tum, quod d>e cacumine superest, duabus geminis tantum supra 
" terram «relictis amputatur, et ingesta humo scrobis coin- 
" pletur." 

** The author of the book De Arboribus, usually ascribed 
to Columella, says, " Bidentibus terram vertere utilius est, 
" quam aratro. Bidens aequaliter totam terram vertit; ara- 
" trum, praeterquam quod scamna facit, tum etiam boves, qui 
" arant, aliquantulum virgarum, et interdum totas vites, 
" frangunt," cap. xii. 

The antients, as well as the moderns, in some places, houghed 
the land between the ranks of vines, in others ploughed it. 
And, acoording as the custom of t,he country, or as the land 
required one or the other ; they planted their vines at a less or 
greater di^tance. Thus Columella, lib. III. c. xiii. " Inter 
" ordines vinearum reiinquitur spatium, prout cuique mos est 
" vineas colere vel aratro vel bidente. Si fossore tantum terra 
" versetur, minimum est qranque pedum interordinium, septem 
" maximum ; si.n bubus et aratro, minimum est septem pedum, 
" satis amplum d ecem. Nonnulii tamen omnem vitem per denos 
" pedes in quincuncem diisponunt, ut more novalium terra trans- 
" versis adversisqi.*e su\cis proscindatur." This is repeated 
again, lib. V. c. v. 

* 5 It is the custom in Provence and Languedoc, as well as in 
Italy, to plough up tihe distances betvreen the vines, where there 
is sufficient room ; where there is not, to hough the iand in the 
spring-time. — " Flecte*.re luctantes iuvencos" expresses very 
naturally and livelily tliis sort of ploughing. 

Luctantes well expri 3^ses the difficulty of ploughing among 
vineyards and plantatio na, as they are obliged to do in Italy : 
on which occasion Coh m.\ella gives the following direction. — 
" Boves, cumad arbore mvenerint, fortiter retinere ac retardare 
" oportet, ne in radieen i majore nisu vomis impactuscollacom- 
" moveat, neve aut corr lubosad stipitem vehementius offendat, 
" aut extremo jugo tt uncum delibet ramumque deplantet." 
Lib. II. c. ii. 

80 on the georgics. 

Ver. 358— 361. 

" Tum *' leves calamos, et rasae hastilia virgae, 
" Fraxineasque aptare sudes, furcasque bicornes : 
" Viribus eniti quarum, et contemnere ventos 
" Assuescant, summasque sequi * 2 tabulata perulmos." 

** Leves, and Rasae, such as cannot grow and draw thereby 
any of the virtue of the earth. For the same reason, Colu- 
mella, speaking of supporting young vines, orders that they 
should be old — " Aut veteres (ne novae radicem agant) arun- 
" dines binas singulis vitibus applicabimus ; aut si regionis 
" conditio permittat, vetera, deponemus hastilia, quibus adnec- 
" tantur singulae transversae perticae." Lib. IV. c. xii. 

* 2 Tabulata were stages or stories formed on elms, or other 
trees, for their vines. The manner of doing this is fully ex- 
plained by Columella, lib. V. c. vi. " Cum adolescere inci- 
" pient ulmi, falce formandae et tabulata instituenda sunt. 
" Hoc enim nomine usurpant agricolae ramos truncosque pro- 
"minentes; eosque vel propius ferro compescunt, vel longius 
" promittunt, ut vites laxius diffundantur: Hoc in solo pingui 

" melius, illud in gracili." Then he proceeds to direct the 

making these Tabulata. " Tabulata inter se ne minus ternis 
" pedibus absint; atque ita formentur ne superior ramus in 
" eadem linea sit, qua inferior ; nam demissum ex eo palmitem 

" germinantem inferior atteret, etfructum decutiet." Again 

afterwards: " Ulmum autem novellarn sic formare conveniet. 
■" Loco pingui octo pedes a terra sine ramo relinquendi, vel in 
" arvo gracili septem pedes : Supra quod spatium deinde per 
" circuitum in tres partes arbor dividenda est, ac tribus late- 
" ribus singuli ramuli submittendi primo Tabulato assignentur. 
■" Mox ternis pedibus interpositis, alii rami summittendi sunt, 
" ita ne iisclem lineis quibus in superiore positi sint ; in eadem 
" ratione usque in cacumen ordinanda erit arbor." An em- 
phasis is to be laid on Summas, under which epithet is couched 
u precept much insisted on by Columella, who thus proceeds : 
" Plerique agricolae ima tabulata materiis frequentant, uberio- 
" rem fructum et magis facilem cultum sequentes ; at qui 
" bonitati vini student, in summas arbores vitem promovent." 

Ver. 362—370. 
*' Dum prima novis adolescit frondibus aetas, 

" Parcendum teneris : et dum se laetus ad auras 
" Palmes agit, laxis per purum immissus habenis, 
" Ipsa acies nondum falcis tentanda ; sed uncis 
*' Carpendae manibus frondes, interque legendae. 
" Inde ubi jam validis amplexae stirpibus ulmos 
" Exierint; tum stringe comas, tum brachia tonde, 


" Ante reformidant ferrum : tum denique dura 
" Exerce imperia, et ramos compesce * 2 fluentes." 

** Columella, who has constantly followed Virgil, has here 
expressly condemned him ; but it is in very good company. — 
His whole passage is tlius : " Illam veterem opinionem damna- 
" vit usus, non esse ferro tangendos anniculos malleolos, quod 
" aciem reformident : quocl frustra Virgilius et Saserna, Stolon- 
" esque et Catones timuerunt : qui non solum in eo errabant, 
" quod primi anni capillamenta seminum intacta patiebantur ; 
" sed et post biennium cum viviradix recidenda erat, omnem 
" superficiem amputabant solo tenus juxta ipsum articulum, ut 
" e duro pullularet." Lib. IV. c. xi. — He says in the former 
chapter : " Semina primo quidem anno quo sunt posita fre- 
" quentibus fossionibus, omnibus mensibus dum frondent, ac 
" pampinationibus adjuvanda sunt, ut robur accipiant ; nec 
" plus cjuam uni materiae serviant." By which, I suppose, he 
means, that all the shoots, except one, are to be cut off the first 
year. If Virgil diflers from him in this, and letting all the 
shoots alone till the second year, he has erred in good company, 
ancl has followed the antient method, as Columella himself inti- 
mates. And though Virgil does not cut off any of the first 
year's shoots, yet he orders the leaves to be stript ; " nec 
" patitur. vitem supervacuis frondibus luxuriantem silvescere," 
as Columella himself expresses it, cap. xi. As to the second 
part of Columella's charge, I don't see that Virgil is justly 
taxed: for he only expresses himself at large, 

— " Tum brachia tonde." 

And again, 

" Et ramos compesce fluentes," 

which need not be construed-to mean, cutting the shoots clown 
to the ground ; but pruning them, as Columella himself directs: 
" Media igitur ratio sequenda est," etc. Ibid. 

* a Dr. Martyn says, Pierius tells us, that the oldest Roman 
manuscript reads Valentes, and thinks that both the precept and 
expression were taken from Varro. But, in my opinion, the 
passage quoted from Varro shews rather that Valentes is not 
the true reading: for he orders two or three of the most healthy 
shoots (qui plurimum valent) to be left, the others tobe cut ofT. 

Ver. 376—384. 

" Frigora nec tantum cana concreta pruina, 
" Aut gravis incumbens scopulis arentibus aestas ; 
" Quantum illi nocuere greges, durique venenum 
" Dentis, et admorso signata iii stirpe cicatrix. 



" Non aliam ob culpam * Bacclio caper omnibus aris 
" Caeditur, et veteres ineunt proscenia ludi : 
" Praemiaque + ingentes pagoset compita circum 
" Theseidae posuere : atque inter pocula laeti 
" Mollibus in pratis unctos saliere per utres." 

* " Quaedam pecudes culturae sunt inimicae, ac veneno, ut 
" caprae. Omnia novella sata carpendo corrumpunt ; non mi- 
" nimum vites atque oleas. Itaque propterea institutum diversa 
" de causa, ut ex caprino genere ad alii Dei aram hostia addu- 
" ceretur, ad alii non sacrificaretur, cum ab eodem odio alter 
" videre nollet, alter etiam videre pereuntem vellet. Sic fac- 
" tum, ut Libero patri, repertori vitis, hirci immolarentur, 
" proinde ut capite darent poenas. Contra, ut Minervae ca- 
" prini'generis nihil immolarent, propter oleam, quod eam, 
" quam laeserit, iieri dicunt sterilem : ejus enim salivam esse 
" fructuis venenum." Varro, De re rust. lib. I. c. ii. 

T " Ingentes pagos" does not seund Virgilian ; and the pas- 
sage is much more clear, and better poetry, with the altera- 
tion mentioned by two or three of the critics, who read Inge- 
niis, instead of Ingentes. 

Ver. 388—392. 

" Et te, Bacche, vocant per carmina laeta, tibique 
" f Oscilla ex alta suspendunt moilia pinu. 
" Hinc omnis largo pubescit vinea foetu : 
" Complentur vallesque cavae, saltusque profundi ; 
" * Et quocunque Deus circum caput egit f honestum." 

T Virgil speaks here of some little heads of Bacchus, which 
the countrymen of old hung upon trees, that the face might 
turn every way ; out of a notion, that the regards of this God 
gave fertility to their vineyards: and Ovid mentions Bacchus's 
turning his face towards him, as a blessing, Fast. III. 789. 
The former, in the passage above ; which is not very easy to 
be understood of itself ; and for the full understanding of which 
I was obliged to a gem, in the Great Duke's collection at Flo- 
rence. See Pol. pl. XX. ng. ii. — Virgil here says, that there 
5s plentv wherever this God turns " his beautiful face." Mr. 
Dryden, in his translation of the words, seems to have bor- 
rowed his idea of Bacchus from the vulgar representations of 
him on our sign-posts ; and so calls it (in downright English) 
" Bacchus^ honest face." 

* Columella, quoting this verse, says: " Quod de sacro 
" numine poeta dicit, verum quocnnque Domini praesentis 
" oculi frequenter accessere, in ea parte majorem in modum 
" fructus exuberat." Lib. iii. c. xxi. 


Ver. 397—400. 

" Est etiam ille labor curandis vitibus alter, 
* Cui nunquam exhausti satis est : namque omne quotannis 
" Terque # quaterque solum scindendum, glebaque versis 
" Aeterniim frangenda bidentibus." 

* This rule is excellently well expressed, for it directs fre- 
quent digging ; which " terque quaterque" imports: and at 
the same time intimates the usual number of times to be three 
or four : and that his meaning might not be mistaken, he en- 
forces frequent digging by what follows, " Aeterniim," etc. 
So Columella directs " crebras fossiones" in general terms, and 
then adds : " Nec inficior plerosque ante me rusticarum rerum 
" magistros tribus fossionibus (vinearum) contentos fuisse, ex 
" quibus Graecinus ; qui sic refert : Potest videri satis esse 
" constitutam vineam ter fodere." etc. Lib. IV. c. xxviii. 

Ver. 403—407. 
Seras posuit cum vinea frondes, 

" Frigidus et sylvis Aquilo decussit honorem ; 

" Jam tum acer curas venientem extendit in annum 

" Rusticus, et curvo Saturni dente relictam 

" Persequitur vitem attondens, fingitque # putando." 

* Columella says : " Putandi duo sunt tempora: melius (ut 
" ait Mago) vernum : Sed nec utique verno omnibus regioni- 
" bus melior putatio est. Nam ubi caelum frigidum est, ea 
" sine dubio eligenda est : Ubi vero aprica loca sunt, mollesque 
" hiemes (as at Naples) optima et maxime naturalis est Autum- 
" nalis: Quo tenapore divina quadam lege et aeterna fructum 

" cum fronde stirpes deponunt." Lib. IV. c. x. Virgil fol- 

lows the same direction of nature : 

" Seras posuit cum vinea frondes." 

Again Columella says : " Placet ergo, si mitis ac temperata 
" permittit in ea regione quam colimus coeli clementia, facta 
" vindemia secundum idus Octob. auspicari putationem. Sin 
" autem coeli status frigidus et pruinosus hiemis violentiam 
" denunciat, in idus Feb. hanc curam difteremus." Cap. xxiii. 

Ver. 410, 411. 
" *' Bis vitibus ingruit umbra, 

" Bis # ! segetem densis obducunt sentibus herbae." 

#' Columella, lib. XI. c. ii. speaking of prid. kal. Mai. says : 
" Per hos dies prima pampinatio recte inehoatur, dum prore- 
" pentes oculi digito decuti possint." Again, in the same 

G 2 


chapter, he says : " Ab idib. Mai. usque in kal. Jun. veteranam 

" vineam et caeteras omnes vineas pampinare opcrtet." 

Again, afterwards, sub finem Aug. he says: " Multi etiam, si 
" pluvius est status caeli, sicut suburbana i-egione Italiae, pam- 
" pinis vitem spoliant, ut percoqui fructus possint, nec putres- 
" cere imbribus. At e contrario locis calidioribus, ut in Bae- 
" tica, maritimis regionibus, et in Africa, circa vindemiam 
" adumbrantur stramentis vel aliis tegumentis uvae, ne ventis 

" aut caloribus exarescant." This precept is confirmed by 

Palladius, in Aug. tit. — " Aug. mense ultimo locis frigidis 
" pampinatur ; locis autem ferventibus ac siccis obumbratur 

" potius uva." So Columella says, lib. IV. c. xxviii. 

" Tempus pampinationis antequam florem vitis ostendat max- 
" ime eligendum est : Sed et postea licet eandem repetere." 
And again : " Pubescentem vero et quasi adolescentem convenit 
" foliis omnibus nudare." Ibid. 

* 2 Segetem ; i. e. segetem vitium, the young plants, the 
nursery. So ver. 266. 


Ubi prima paretur 

" Arboribus seges."- 

Ver. 412. 
" * Laudato ingentia rura, 

" Exiguum colito."- 

* Columella, lib. I. c. iii. calls this " Praeclaram nostri 
" Poetae sententiam." And adds immediately after : " Nec 
" dubium quin minus reddat laxus ager non recte cultus, quam 
" angustus eximie." And, lib. IV. c. ii. he relates a story 
which very much confirms the truth of tliis sentence. 

Ver. 413—415. 
" Nec non etiam aspera rusci 

" *' Vimina per sylvam, et ripis fluvialis arundo 
" Caeditur : * a incultique exercet cura salicti." 

*' The antients as well as moderns, who had land proper for 
it, used to have in some part of their ground Arundineta and 
Salicta, for the use of their vineyards ; but those whose lot fell 
in dry land, which was not proper for such plantations, or who 
had neglected making them, were obliged to seek for the wild 
Vimina in the woods, and reeds by the water-side. That Virgil 
means such as these, is manifest from his " Vimina per sylvam, 

" fluvialis arundo," and " inculti salicti." Columella having 

treated, lib. IV. c. xxx. de salicibus, and c. iii. de genistis, 
adds in this last chapter : " Caetera vincula, qualia sunt cx 
" rubo, majorem operam, sed in egeno tamen necessariam, 


" exigunt." AU such sort of Vimina are meant by Virgil, by 
his " aspera rusci vimina." 

* 2 Inculti, i. e. nisi colatur — for several had beds of willows, 
but every body liad not that provision: of such Virgil says, 
that thev must have the trouble of getting wild willows'. Ex- 
ercet inclines me to this interpretation ; or it may signify only, 
" quod non colitur," bccause at the beginning of this book, 
amongst those " quae sponte sua veniunt," Virgil reckons Sa- 
iicta. See ver. 1 1 and 13. 

Ver. 416. 
" Jam vinctae vites, jam falcem * arbusta reponunt." 

* Arbustum is used commonly for a plantation of any trees; 
as for example, such as are to support vines. Vid. Columella, 
lib. V. c. De Ulmariis. 

Ver. 417—419. 

" Jam -■r' canit extremos effoetus vinitor antes ; 
" Sollicitanda tamen tellus, pulvisque * 2 movendus : 
" Et jam * a maturis metuendus Jupiter uvis." 

* l Columella hints at the custom of the Vignerol's singing at 
.his work, telling us that he makcs such verses : 

" Quae canat inter opus musa modulante putator 
" Pendulus arbustis." Lib. X. 

* 2 The proper term used of old for breaking the clods in 
vineyards was Pulveration, which by the husbandmen was 
called Occatio ; for thus says Columella, speaking of the end 
of August: " His quidem diebus quibusdam locis, ut in Bae- 
" tica, maritimis regionibus, ut in Africa, vindemia conficitur. 
" Sed frigidioribus regionibus Pulverationem faciunt, quam 
" vocant rustici Occationem, cum omnis gleba in vineis refrin- 

" gitur, et resolvitur in pulverem." Lib. XI. c. ii. How 

nicely curious was Virgil in his expressions ! — Again, Colu- 
mella : " Pubescentem et quasi adolescentem vitem convenit 
" foliis omnibus nudare, tum et crebris fossionibus implere ; 
" nam nt uberior pulverationibus." Lib. IV. c. xxviii. 

* 3 Even when the grapes are ripe, or near it, all danger is 

not yet over. " In hoc temporis intervallo res summa 

" vitium agitur, decretorio uvis sidere dlo quod Caniculam 
" appellavimus : Unde Carbuncnlare dicuntur, ut quodam 
" uredinis carbone exustae. Non comparantur huic malo 
" grandinis procellae," etc. Plin. lib. XVIII. c. xxviii. 

86 on the georcics. 

Ver. 420-425. 

" Contra, non * J ulla est oleis cultura: neque illae 
" Procurvam expectant falcem, rastrosque tenaces ; 
" Cum semel haeserunt arvis, aurasque tulerunt. 
" Ipsa satis tellus, cum * 2 dente recluditur unco, 
" Sufficit humorem, et gravidas cum vomere fruges. 
" Hoc pinguem et placitam * 3 Paci nutritor olivam." 

*' So Columella : " Omnis arboris cultus simplicior quam 
" vinearum est ; longeque ex omnibus stirpibus minorem im- 
" pensam desiderat olea." Lib. V. c. viii. 

* 2 Columella directs houghing and ploughing olive-yards : 
" Olivetum minime bis anno arari debet: et bidentibus alte cir- 

" cumfodiri." And though he orders " Oliveta stercorari, 

" et putari ;" vet he prescribes very little dung ; and as to the 
pruning, he says, " Compluribus annis interpositis olivetum 
" putandum est :" And again ; " Satis erit octavo anno fecisse, 
" ne fructuarii rami subinde amputentur." Lib. v. c. ix. He 
liad said before, in the 8th chapter, that all culture may be 
omitted without injuring the tree. And in confirmation of 
this, he tells us it was an old proverb, " Eum, qui aret olive- 
" tum, rogare fructum ; qui stercoret, exorare ; qui caedat, 
" cogere." Yet, after first planting, he tells us, they ought 
to be both watered and pruned ; and therefore Virgil says, 

" Cura semel haeserunt." 

* 3 Paci should be printed with a capital ; " the Goddess of 

Ver. 434, 435. 

" Quid majora sequar ? *' salices, humilesque genistae, 
" Aut illae ** peoori frondem, aut pastoribus * 3 umbram 
" Sufficiunt." 

*-' And again, presently after : 

" Viminibus salices foecundi." 

Viro-il had told us before, ver. 83; 

" Genus uaud unum salici,'' etc. 

and ver. 269 : 

" Coeli regionem cortice signant." 

Columella says : " Hanc observationem non solum in vitium 
" positione, sed io ulmorum caeterarumque arborum, pra?- 
" cipio: uti, cum de seminario eximuntur, rubrica notetur 


" una pars; quae nos admoneat, ne aliter arboresconstituamus, 
" quam quemadmodum in seminario steterint. Plurimum 
" enim refert, ut eam partem caeli spectent, cui ab tenerq 
" consueverunt." Lib. V. c. vi. 

* 2 Virgil says, G. III. 175, 

" Vescas salicum frondes." 

* 3 Q. whethcr this does not mean their Huts? 

Ver. 440—443. 

" Ipsae Caucaseo steriles in vertice sylvae, 
" Quas animosi Euri assidue franguntque feruntque, 
" Dant alios aliae foetus; dant utile lignum 
" Navigiis pinos, domibus cedrosque * cupressosque." 

* It is true, that Vitruvius does not reckon the Cypress the best 
timber forbuilding houses; for he says: " Nec abietis nec sapin- 
" orum omnibus locis copia est ; sed inopiae abietis aut sapinorum 
" vitabuntur, utendo cypresso, populo, ulmo, pinu." Lib. II. 
c. ii. — But Mons. Perrault,in his edition of Vitruvius, remarks: 
" Que le Cypres est sans comparaison meilleur que 1'Abies et le 
" Sapin. Theophraste en parle comme du plus durable et du 
" moins sujet aux vers et a la pourriture ; etant celui dont on 

" trouve les plus anciens edifices avoir ete batis." N. B. 

Vitruvius himself asserts the same, lib. II. c. ix. 

Ver. 446—448. 

" Viminibus *' salices foecundae, frondibus * 2 ulmi : 
" At myrtus validis * 3 hastilibus, et bona bello 
" Cornus." 

*' Salices being twice mentioned within thirteen verses; Q. 
whether Virgil does not meantwo different trees, both valuable 
on different accounts ? 

" Genus haud unum, nec fortibus ulmis, 

" Nec salici." Ver. 83. 

At the beginning of this book, Virgil names Silerand Salicta 
immediately after one another : 

" Molle siler, lentaeque genistae, 

" Populus, et glauca canentia fronde salicta." Ver. 12. 

* 2 See note on ver. 83 of this Georgic. Varro advises 

planting elms as boundaries of lands : " Quod frondem jucundis- 

" simam ministrat ovibus acbubus." Lib. I. c. xv. It is 

the practice still in Italy, to strip elms for fodder. 


* 3 Virgil anns Camilla with a myrtle javelin. Aen. VII. 
ver. ult. 

Ver. 455—457. 

" Bacchus et ad culpam causas dedit : ille furentes 
" Centauros leto domuit, Rhaetumque, Pholumque ; 
" Et magno * Hylaeum Lapithis cratere minantem." 

* A good image of drunken folks quarrelling. — Q. if any 
old bas-reliefs representing the Centaurs in this attitude? — See 
what Pliny relates of the story of the Lapithae engraved by 
Phideas on Pallas's shield, lib. XXXVI. c. v. " Scuto ejus 
" (i. e. Minervae) Amazonum praelium Phideas caelavit, intu- 
" mescente ambitu parmae, ejusdem concava. parte Deorum et 
" Gigantum dimicationem, in soleis vero Lapitharum et Cen- 
" taurorum ; adeo momenta omnia compacta artis illius fuere." 
This being one of the most celebrated statues of the world, was 
undoubtedly very well known to the virtuosi of Rome. 

Ver. 458—460. 
" O fortunatos nimium, sua si bona norint, 
" Agricolas ! quibus ipsa, proculdiscordibus armis, 
" Fundit humo facilem victum * justissima tellus." 

* The Earth is called here, very properly, Justissima ; not 
only because it restores with interest what is deposited, but by 
way ofantithesis to the " discordibus armis" in the foreffoW 

Ver. 461—470. 

" Si non *. J ingentem foribus domus alta superbis 
" Mane salutantum totis vomit aedibus undam ; 
" Nec * 2 varios inhiant pulchra testudine postes, 
" Illusasque auro vestes, Ephyreiaque aera ; 
" Alba neque Assyrio fucatur lana veneno, 
" Nec casia liquidi corrumpitur usus olivi. 
" At * 3 secura quies, et nescia fallere vita, 
" Dives opum variarum ; at latis otia fundis, 
" Speluncae, vivique lacus ; at frigida Tempe, 
" Mugitusque boum, raollesque sub arboresomni 
" Non absunt." 

^ 1 " Ingentem Salutantum Undam totis Vomit aedibus." 
This expression is too bombast for VirgiPs usual style; but is 
purposely affected iiere, as proper in a description of pomp and 

* 2 Some of the Romans were so extravagant as to cover their 
doors and door-cases with Indian tortoise-shell ; and, not con- 
tented with pure tortoise-shell, they had the shell inlaid or 
studded (as we see old cabinets) with precious stones ; which 


Virgil perhaps means by Varios. Lucan, describing the 

palace where Cleopatra entertained Julius Caesar at Alexan- 
dria, says ; 

" Suffecta manu foribus testudinis Indae 
" Terga sedent, crebro maculas distincta smaragdo." 

Lib. X. 120. 
and observes, ten verses before, that this extravagance was not 
then got into Rome. 

* s Observe the difference of style between the six foregoing 
verses and the following. — Observe likewise, with what variety 
of simple expressions he enumerates the innocent amusements 
and happiness of a country life. 

Ver. 486—489. 

O ubi * campi, 

" Sperchiusque, et virginibus bacchata Lacaenis 
" Taygeta ! O qui me -f- gelidis in vallibus Haemi 
" Sistat, et ingenti ramorum protegat umbra !" 

-* Father Catrou has taken the liberty to change this word 
into Tempe ; without any authority, and, I think, without rea- 
son : for supposing the Poet to mean the Tempe of Thessalv, is 
it not niore elegant and poetical to express himself by Campi, 
i. e. Campi isti celebres, Campi, x.xr depygnv, than to name 
Tempe itself ? Besides, it is probable that, having mentioned 
tlie word Tempe butseventeen wordsbefore, he purposely avoids 
repeating it here ; and as he there makes Tempe signify any fine 
fields in general, so here he makes Campi signify the fields of 
Tempe in particular. — And, that his meaning may not be unde- 
termined, he adds the very next word the river Sperchius, 
which runs through those fields. 

T The very best of the Roman poets copied so much after the 
Greek, that they sometimes give us ideas of things, that would 
be proper enough fora Greek, but sound quite improper from 
a Roman. VirgiPs and Horace's instancing in Thessaly and 
Thrace (see Hor. lib. I. od. xxv. 20.) as such very cold coun- 
tries, is a very strong proof of this. — Thrace was full north of 
Greece; and some of the Greeks therefore might talk of the 
coldness of that country, as strongly (perhaps) as some among 
us talk of the coldness of Scotland. 

The Roman writers speak just in the same style/of the coldness 
of Thrace, though a considerable part of Italy lay in as northern 
a latitude, and some of it even farther north than Thrace. 
Ver. 490—492. 
" -f- Felix, qui potuit rerum cognoscere causas, 
" Atque metus omnes et inexorabile fatum 
" Subjecit * pedibus, strepitumque Acherontis avari!" 


f Vlrgll had been saying, that his greatest delight was in the 
Muses; that he coulcl wish to treat of Natural Philosophy in 
verse ; but that if he had not a genius equal to so great an un- 
dertaking ; he would however please himself with rural subjects. 
" Happy (says he) is the person, that has done the former with 
" so good an effect; and not unhappy are those, that are en- 
" gaged, and can divert themselves at least, in the latter." 

Lucretius was the only one of the Romans, wlio had written 
any philosophical poem, when Virgil said this : — all the points 
he mentions here are treated of in that poem: — the effects of it, 
spoken of by Virgil, are the very things which Lucretius aimed 
at: — and Virgil, in speaking of the author of it, uses the same 
words and expressions taken directly from this poem of Lucre- 
tius. All which (considered together with Virgil's general 
manner of rather hinting at things than speaking them quite 
out) make it clear to me, that it was Lucretius whom he means 
in this passage. 

Our Archbishop Tillotson may be a little too severe on Vir- 
gil, where he singles out this passage as a very criminal one, 
vol.IT. §lxiv. 

I suppose, the chief point that gave offence in it, is his dis- 
belief of Hell. And it is true that Virgil himself did not be- 
lieve it. Afterdescribing hell, in the Aeneid, he makes his Hero 
and the Sibyl go out of the Ivory-gate, which he had just before 
called, The passage of vain dreams. The Poetic Hell was not 
a part of the olcl Roman creed ; though a future state was be- 
lieved by their best philosophers. 

Balbus the Stoic, in Cicero De Natura Deorum, arguing for 
a Gocl, says : " Quis Hippocentaurum fuisse, aut Chimaeram 
" putat? Quaeve anus tam excors inveniri potest, quae illa, 
" quae quondam credebantur apud Inferos, portenta extimes- 
" cat ?" Lib. II. sub initio. 

Caesar says roundly in the Senate-house : " De poena possum 
" equidem dicere id quod res habet, in luctu atque miseriis 
" mortem aerumnarum requiem, non cruciatum esse ; eam 
" cuncta mortalium mala dissolvere ; ultra, neque curae, neque 
" gaudio, locum esse." Sallust. Bell. Cat. § li. And all that 
Cato answers to it is: " Bene et composite C. Caesar paulo 
" ante in hoc ordine de vita et morte disseruit : credo, falsa 
" existimans ea quae de Inferis memorantur ; diverso itinere 
" malos a bonis loca tetra, inculta, foeda et formidolosa habere. 
" Itaque censuit," etc. Ironically. 

Cicero says much the same as Caesar ; in a public pleading 
too: " Nunc quidem quocl tandem illi mali mors attulit? Nisi 
" forte ineptiis ac fabulis ducimur, ut existimemus illum apud 
" Inferos impiorum supplicia perferre, ac plures illic offendisse 
" inimicos quam hic reliquisse ; a socrus, ab uxorum, a fratris, a 


" liberum pocnis, actum esse praecipitem in sceleratorum sedem 
" atque regionem : quae si falsa sunt, id quod omnes intelligunt, 
11 quid ei tandem aliud mors eripuit praeter sensum doloris?" 
Pro Cluentio, § lxi. 

The same great philosopher is very plain and full against the 
poetical hell, in his Tusculan Questions, lib. I. sub initio ; and 
m his Cato Major. 

* This was an action of triumph, as may be seen in several 
statues and medals (see Medaglioni di Buonarroti, p. 176.); 
and from hence was used metaphorically, to signify any sorts of 
triumphing, or having superiority. 

Ver. 495—499. 

" Illum non populi fasces, non purpura regum 
" Flexit, et infidos agitans discordia *- ] fratres ; 
" Aut conjurato descendens Dacus ab Istro: 
" Non res Romanae, perituraque t regna : neque ille 
" Aut * 2 doluit miserans inopem, aut invidit habenti." 

* a Virgil was undoubtedly writing his Georgics at the very 
time that Phraates and Tiridates were disputing for the kingdom 
of Persia ; and therefore prcbably hints at that. — Horace, wha 
wrote at the same time, mentions this piece of history : 

" Redditum Cyri solio Phraaten." Lib. II. Od. ii. 

t When the Roman empire had any war, their authors say 
they had something to do against the Reges : so Regna here 
may signify the countries under the Reges, " the nations yet to 
" be conquered." 

* 2 Ruaeus's construction may perhaps be agreeable to the 
sentiments of the rigid Stoics, but, I think, is too abstruse for 
this place. Virgil speaks of the philosopher above in those 
three verses, 

" Felix qui potuit," etc. 

And here he describes the happiness of the innocent farmer 
above the citizen; and may be understood in a niuch plainer 
sense : That he who lives retired in the country is free from see- 
ing such sad spectacles, as they must be every day exposed to at 
Rome. " He sees no objectsof pity, nor envies the pomp of 
the rich." 

Ver. 505—509. 

" Hic petit excidiis urbem miserosque Penates, 
" Ut * J gemma bibat, et Sarrano indormiat ostro: 
" Condit opes alius, defossoque incubat auro ; 
" Hic stupet attonitus rostris : hunc * z plausus hiantenv 


" Per cuneos (* 3 geminatus enim) plebisque patrumque 
" Corripuit." 

^ 1 " Gemmaeque capaces 

" Excepere merum. 1 ' Lucan. X. 160. 

speaking of the feast given to Caesar in Aegypt. 

The pride of the antients covered their tables or side-boards 
with cups of precious stone, as onyx, agate, etc. And probably 
the dishes and cups of agate, jasper, etc. which are now pre- 
served in treasuries and cabinets, served formerly at the tables 
of princes and great men. " Appianus testatur Mithridatem 
" Ponti regem circiter duo miilia poculorum ex onyche in suo 
" thesauro habuisse ; verum non solum ex onyche, sed sardo- 
" nyche, et chalcedonio factitata fuisse certum est." Anselm. 

Boet. Hist. Gemm. lib. II. c. xcii. " Achates tanta mole 

" excrescit ut pocula et scyphi inde fieri possint." Id. lib. II. 
c. xcvi. Q. whether the vases at Genoa, and Venice, were not 
of this sort? And likewise the agate cup at the Barberini palace. 
See Misson's description of it, vol. II. lett. xxix. 

The sapphire cup in the treasury of the church of St. Jolm 
Baptist at Monza near Milan, is likewise supposed to be of this 
sort. It was left by Theudelinda Queen of the Lombards, who 
built and endowed the church. It is a tumbler or goblet, two 
inches three tenths deep, by three inches four tenths diame- 

ter. In the treasury of St. Denis is a large cup of oriental 

agate, with a bas-relief representing a Sacrifice. — PJinv, iu his 
Natural Historv, tells us, that Petronius, a little before his 
death, ordered a valuable cup of this sort to be broke, that it 
might not fall into the hands of Nero>. — " T. Petronius con- 
" sularis mofiturus invidia Neronis, ut mensam ejus exhaere- 
" daret, Truilam Murrhynam ccc. HS. emptam fregit." Lib. 
XXXVII. c. ii. 

* 2 Horace mentions the applause given tc Maecenas from a 
crowded theatre, as a mark of the greatest honour and respect 
that could be paid him by the people : 

" Cum populus frequens 

" Laetum theatris ter crepuit sonum. 11 Lib. II. Od. xvii. 

" Cum tibi plausus, 
" Care Maecenas eques," etc. Lib. I. Od. xx. 

* 3 Repetition of applause, a mark of the greatest favour ; as 
is our Encore, Encore, in our theatres. — Horace, in one of his 
compliments to Augustus, says : 

" Tuque dum procedis, Io Triumphe, 

" Non semel dicemus, Io Triumphe, 

" Civitas omnis." Lib. IV. Od. ii. 


Vf.r. .019. 
" Venit * hiems ; teritur Sicyonia bacca trapetis." 

* Columella, having directed, in several chapters of liis Xllth 
book, what waa to be done by the Villica, or farmer's wife, 
during the Autumn, concludes thus : " Sequitur autem frigus 
" hiemis, per quod olivitas, sicut vindemia, curam villicae re- 
" petit." Cap. xlvii. And cap. 1. he says : " Media est olivitas 
" plerumque initium mensis Decembris. Nam et ante hoc 
" tempus acerbum oleum conficitur, quod vocatur aestivum; et 
" circa hunc mensem viride premitur ; deinde postea, maturum." 

Ver. 532—535. 

" Hanc olim & 1 veteres vitam coluere Sabini, 
" Hanc Remus et frater : sic fortis Etruria crevit, 
" Scilicet et rerum facta est pulcherrima Roma ; 
" Septemquc una sibi muro circumdedit arces." 

*' " Antiquissima gens est Sabinorum, Indigenarum nimi- 
" rum." Strabo, lib. V. 

It is not improbable that, in the compliment here paid, Virgil 
not only has respect to the nearest neighbours of Rome, the 
Sabini and Etrurians, but names the latter preferably to any 
other country in Italy, out of compliment to Maecenas, who 
was descended from the old race of the kings of that country ; 
and therefore speaks of Tuscany and Rome almost as if they 
were both upon the same footing ; here, and in the First Georgic, 
ver. 499. 

* The only regions ailied to Aeneas in his war against Turnus, 
is Tuscany, and the territory about Rome. The only place out 
of these is his favourite Mantua ; which he brings in as an ap- 
penage of Tuscany. See Aen. III. 170. and X. 199. 



Ver. 1, 2. 
" Te quoque, magna * ] Pales, et te memorande canemus 
" * 2 Pastor ab Amphryso." 

*' This Godcless is represented by Ovid, in his account of the 
Palilia, as the supreme power presiding over pastoral affairs ; 
and is therefore very justly called Magna. — See Ovid. Fast. 
lib. IV. 

-*- 2 Pausanias speaks of a temple of Apollo, where he is re- 
presented, " Calceamenta pedibus gerens, et altero pede calvam 
" premens bovis: Bobus etenim potissimum gaudere Apollinem, 
" etc. Hujusmodi ob causam non inepte quis conjiciat haec de 
" bovis calva ita esse facta." Lib. VII. Again, lib. IX. he 
mentions Apollo called Boidromius. 

Ver. 8, 9. 

" Tentanda via est, qua me quoque possim 

" Tollere humo, victorque virum volitare per ora." 

* Pliny hints at this passage, lib. V. Epist. viii. and says : 
" Me autem nihil aeque ac diuturnitatis amor et cupido solici- 
" tat : res homine dignissima, praesertim qui, nullius sibi 
" conscius culpae, posteritatis memoriam non reformidet." — 
And, lib. V. Epist. iii. offering some reasons for being an 
author, and publishing ; and having named several great men, 
whose example he followed therein, and amongst others Julius 
Caesar, and other Emperors, concludes thus: " Neronem enim 
" transeo, quamvis sciam non corrumpi in deterius quae ali- 
" quando etiam a malis, sed honesta manere quae saepius a bonis 
" fiunt. lnter quos vel praecipue numerandus est P. Virgilius." 

Ver. 12. 

" Primus * Idumaeas referam tibi, Mantua, palmas." 

* " Arbusto palmarum dives Idume." Lucan. III. 216. 

Ver. 16 — 18. 
" In medio mihi Caesar erit, templumque tenebit. 
" Illi* 1 victor ego, et Tyrio conspectus in ostro, 
" Centum* 9 quadrijugos agitabo ad flumina currus." 

*' Virgil had more modesty than to speak of himself, as Ruaeus 
here interprets him : this passage is designed as a compliment to 
Augustus, no t to himself,— -Victor rather refers to the triumphal 


dress of the person who presided at the sports. Tacitus tells 
us (lib. I.) that in the Lucli Augustales, which were decreed by 
the Senate of Rome in honour of Augustus, as Virgil proposes 
to do at Mantua, it was ordered " ut per Circum triumphali 
" veste uterentur." 

Virgil seems to have given here the first slcetch for the Augus- 
talia ; and to have laid the plan for those honours which the 
Romans and others afterwards solemnized to Augustus. 

*- Strabo, in his accountof the Aegyptian temples, lib. XVII. 
tells us that there was usually a ^po^os or Cursus before the 
entrance of their temples, the extent of' which %p6[Aos he de- 
scribes. — The temple of Bacchus near Rome, according to the 
draught of it by Desgodetz, seem to have been built on the 
Aegyptian plan. 

Ver. 19, 20. 
" Cuncta mihi, Alpheum linquens lucosque Molorchi, 
" Cursibus et crudo decei*net-* Graecia caestu." 

* This proposal of VirgiPs to celebrate games, etc. at Mantua, 
in honour of Augustus, after the Grecian manner, was an 
obliging compliment to the Neapolitans, with whom he lived 
when he wrote this. — They were descended from the Greeks, 
and, as Strabo expressly tells us, observecl many of their cus- 
toms, particularly in their games : " Plurima ibi (Neapoli) 
" Graecorum institutorum supersunt vestigia, ut Gymnasia, 
" Epheborum coetus, etc. Hoc tempore, Sacrum Quinquennale 
" certamen Musicum et Gymnicum per aliquot dies agitur, ludis 
" Graecorum nobilissimis aemulum." Lib. V. 

Ver. 21—25. 
" Ipse caput tonsae foliis ornatus* 1 olivae 
" Dona feram. Jam nunc solemnes ducere-x- 2 pompas 
" Ad delubra juvat, caesosque videre juvencos : 
" Vel* 3 scena ut versis discedat frontibus, utque 
" Purpurea intexti tollant aulaea Britanni." 

-^ 1 Pliny, speaking of the olive, has this passage : " Oleae 
" honorem Romana Majestas magnum praebuit, turmasequitum 
" idibus Juliis ex ea coronando : item minoribus triumphis 
" ovantes." Upon which Father Harcluin has the following 
note : " Ovantium igitur corona et oleaginea fuit. Sed et 
" oleagineis coronis, inquit Festus, ministri triumphantium ute- 
" bantur, cjuocI Minerva Dea belli esse putabatur. Quare Vir- 
" gilius, qui se triumphorum Augusti Caesaris ministrum deligi 
" ethaberi studuit, ita cecinit." Lib. XV. § v. N. 5. 

Capaccio,in his History of Naples, tellsus of a Greek inscrip- 
tion in Museo Cardinalis Carpensis; of which he gives this 
translation: " Batonem Philonis filium, quoniam per annosduos 


" praeses creatus ex animi sui et Aliptarum sententia juste ac 
" digne Gymnasium administravit, eaque de causa Collegium 
" universum perhosce duosannosipsum oleaginacorona, summa 
" cum celebritate, coronavit," etc. Lib. I. c. xviii. 

* 2 Dionysius Halicarnasseus, having related the old story of 
Castor and Pollux bringing the news to Rome of the victory 
obtained at the Lacus Regillus, observes, that there were several 
tokens still remaining in his time of the credit given by the 
Romans to that story, and particularly the pompous procession 
made through several streets of the city,by the Roman knights 
on horseback, on the feast-day of Castor and Pollux, viz. the 
ides of July, to their temple in the Forum, lib. VI. c. xiii. 

This cavalcade, as we find by Suetonius, was re-established 
by Augustus, after it had been neglected for some time : " Equi- 
" tum turmas frequenter recognovit, post longam intercapedi- 
" nem reducto more transvectionis." Aug. 38. 

Livy says, that this cavalcade was instituted by Q. Fabius 
Maximus: " Ab eodem institutum dicitur, ut equites idibus 
" Quintilibus transveherentur." Lib. IX. in fine. 

This is confirmed by Valerius Maximus : " Trabeatos vero 
" equites idibus Juliis Q. Fabius transvehi instituit." Lib. 

As Augustus had great regard to, and loved these pompous 
cavalcades, Virgil alludes to them by saying, 

Solemnes ducere pompas 

" Ad delubra juvat. 

And as the horse is one of the principal subjects of this book, 
it was very proper to make a cavalcade one part of the show he 
would institute at Mantua in honour of Augustus. 

* 3 The following inscription in one of the windows or open- 
ings which gave light to the Porta obscura at Trivoli, over 
which is supposed to have been the famous temple of Hercules, 
makes mention of the Scena cxl feet long : 












S. C. F. C. 


Vitruvius thus describes the Roman scenes : " Ipsae scenae 
" suas habeant i*ationesexplicatas, itauti mediae valvae ornatus 
" habeant aulae regiae, dextra ac sinistra hospitalia. Secundum 
" autem ea, spatia ad ornatus comparata; (quae loca Graeci 
" zj£giccx%s dicunt, ab eo quod machinae sint in iis locis versa- 
" tiles trigonos habentes). In singula tres sint species ornatio- 
" nis, quae, cum aut fabularum mutationes sunt futurae, seu 
" Deorum adventus cum tonitribus repentinis, versentur, mu- 
" tentque speciem ornationis in frontes." Lib. V. c. vii. 

T " In Panegyri sacra sunt loca, et sacrificia, et stadia ad 
" currendum, Et Scena alicubi. rs/jJvm yaq h «.ur-7), x.qu hpai, ko\ 
" Ipo^oi, kxI o-kwyi ^7)7r8." Philostratus de vita Apol. lib. VIII. 
c. xviii. 

Ver. 26—29. 

"f " In *' foribus pugnam ex auro solidoque elephanto 
" * a Gangaridum faciam, victorisque arma* 3 Quirini : 
" Atque hic undantem bello, magnumque fluentem 
" Nilum, ac navali surgentes aere columnas." 

T Virgil's imaginary temple here seems to have been copied 
from that built by Augustus, to Mars Ultor ; and they agree 
in so many particulars, that I cannot help thinking the one was 
a copy of the other. Ovid thus describes the temple of Mars 

" Ultor ad ipse suos caelo descendit honores; 

" Templaque in Augusto conspicienda Foro. 
" Digna Gigantaeis haec sunt delubra tropaeis; 

" Hinc fera Gradivum bella movere decet. 
" Prospicit in foribus diversae tela figurae ; 

" Armaque terrarum, milite victa suo. 
" Hinc videt Aenean oneratum pondere sacro ; 

" Et tot Iiileae nobilitatis avos : 
" Hinc videt Iliaden humeris ducis arma ferentem." 

Fast. V. 565. 

By compai-ing this with VirgiPs, one sees, that on the gates of 
each ai*e the conquered nations, and their arms; — in each, the 
Trojan ancestors of the Julian family ; in each, Romulus carrying 
the Spolia opima. — The trophies, mentioned for both, I imagine, 
might stand on each side of the front, at top: with Mars stand- 
ing between them, on the highest elevation, in the one ; as 
Augustus may be supposed to do, in the other. 

" Prospicit Armipotens operis fastigia summi; 
" Etprobat invictos summa tenere Deos." 

Fast, V. 5G0 



" In medio mihi Caesar erit; templumque tenebit." 

Georg. III. 16. 

¥* The word Fores was used not only for the door, but like- 
wise for the exterior part of the temple ; as appears from Virgil, 
in his description of the temple of Juno built by Dido: 

" Tum foribus Divae, media testudine templi, 
" Septa armis solioque alte subnixa, resedit." 

Aen. III. 509. 

Where he makes Fores to signify all the temple, except the cell 
or inner part; for he cannot mean that Dido sat at the door of 
the temple, because he expressly declares that it was " media 
" testudine templi." — The same may be gathered from Virgil's 
description of the temple of Apollo at Cumae, lib. VI. and 
likewise from Tacitus, who seems to use the word in distinction 
to the cell of the temple of Vesta. 

* 2 Those that border on the Ganges, or strictly the Indians 
beyond the Ganges, as we learn from Q. Curtius ; who, telling 
us that Alexander being got as far as the river Hypasis in India, 
and inquiring of Phegelas the prince of that part, what coun- 
tries lay beyond him, was thus informed by him: " Undecim 
" dierum ultra flumen (Hypasim) per vastas solitudines iter 
" esse; excipere deinde Gangem, maximum totius Indiae flu- 
" minum: ulteriorem ripam colere gentes Gangaridas et Phar- 
" rasios." Lib. IX. § v. 

By Gangaridae, Virgil means the Eastern people in general. 

* 3 Suetonius says thus: " Censentibus quibusdam Romulum 
" appellari oportere, quasi et ipsum conditorem urbis." And 

Dion — 'O Kauxao s7nQui/,s7 'Hr/jVfus YojiauXos o-vo/j.ocaQvivzi. See 

more in Johannes Philadelphensis (scripto de mensibus in Aug.) 
'OxlaGixvos, etc. The pleasure which Augustus took in this title 
was undoubtedly the reason of VirgiTs making that artful com- 
pliment to him in the sixth Aeneid, where Anchises, shewing 
his son the glories of his posterity, breaks loose from the true 
order of succession, and places Augustus immediately after 
Romulus : which irregularity, though censured by some of the 
critics, is, I think, one of the finest strokes of that glorious 
passage. See Dr. Trapp's note on that place, Book VI. 
ver. 973. of his translation. 

Ver. 30-33. 

" Addam urbes *' Asiae domitas, pulsumque Niphaten, 
" Fidentemque fuga Parthum versisque sagittis: 
" Et * 2 duo rapta manu diverso ex hoste trophaea, 
" * 3 Bisque triumphatas * 4 utroque ab litore gentes." 

^ Compare this with Aeneid VI. 794. and VII. 605. 


Augustus's conquosts in tlic East was a favourite topick of the 
Poetsin his time. Vid. Hor. lib. I. Od. vi. ver. 12. et lib. IV. 
Od. xiv. et xv. 

* 2 Quaer. Whether Virgil does not mean Augustus's victory 
over Brutus aud Cassius, and his recovery of the Roman Eagles 
from the Parthi, for in both actions he might very properly be 

said, " Rapuisse manu trophaea." And we are assured that 

on the former account Augustus built a temple to Mars Ultor, 
and on the latter account he dedicated one to him under the 

title of Bisultor. Suetonius says, " Publica opera plurima 

" extruxit : ex quibus praecipua, forum cum aede Martis 
" Ultoris," etc. And presently after, " Aedem Marti Bello 

" Philippensi pro ultione paterna suscepto voverat." And, 

more expressly, Ovid : 

" Templa feres, et me victore vocaberis Ultor : 

" Voverat, et fuso laetus ab hoste redit. 
" Nec satis est meruisse sui cognomina Martis ; 

" Persequitur Partha signa retenta manu. 
" Parthe, refers Aquilas, victos quoque porrigis arcus ; 

" Pignora jam nostri nulla pudoris habes. 
" Rite Deo, templumque datum, nomenque Bisultor ; 

" Emeritus voti debita solvit honor." Fast. lib. V. 

Or do the " Duo Trophaea" mean only the trophies recovered, 
which were taken from Crassus and Labienus by the two 
Parthian Kings, Moneses and Pacorus? which were esteemed 
two of the greatest disgraces which had befallen Rome. See 
Hor. lib. III. Od. vi. 

Mr. Holdsworth has the following guess on the same passage 

in another place. One of the cases here referred to is un- 

doubtedly Augustus's recovering from the Parthians the stan- 
dards they hacl taken from Crassus. Quaer. If the other does 
not refer to his recovering from the Dalmatians the standards 
they had taken from Gabinius : — for thus the Latin translator 
of Appian, De Bellis Illyricis, having related Augustus's taking 
Sergeste (nowTrieste) and his other conquests overthe Illyrians, 
adds ; " Caesar copias in Dalmatas convertit gentem Illyriorum. 
" Dalmatae quidem, ex quo sub Gabinio quinque cohortes in- 
" terimentes signa ademerant, ob res prospere gestas animis 
" elati,perdecemannos neutiquam deposuere arma, et advenienti 
" (Aug.) Caesari una cum Sergestanis occurrere statuerant." 

Then having given account of the success against them, he 

tells us that Augustus going to Rome to receive the Consulship, 
and returning again to Dalmatia, " Dalmatae fame fatigati 
" commeatu undique excluso, venienti Caesari sponte obviant, 
" seque illi suppliciter dedunt, obsides numero septingentos ex 

H 2 


" propriis filiis exhibent. Hos Caesar Romanorum signa 
" Gabinio adempta ferre monuit: tributa quoque quae sub 
" Caio Caesare olim polliciti in id tempus distulissent persolvere 
" imperavit. Ita Romanis obsequentiores deinceps effecti sunt. 
" Ea signa Caesar in porticu, quae Octavia dicitur, appendit." 

Then having told us of other people of the Illyrians con- 

quered by Caesar, he concludes " Ob eam rem triumphus 
" Illyrius a senatu Caesari decretus est, quem post devictum 
" tandem egit Antonium."— — The story of Gabinius is related 

by Appian, lib. II. De Bellis Civil. sect. cccclxiv. Appian 

hmts at Augustus^s wars against the Illyrians, lib. V. Bell. Civ. 
p. 1175. edit. Toll. and, again, page ult. 

One of the people meant here were certainly the Cantabri. 
Horace, in praising Augustus, generally, if not always, mentions 
his conquering the Cantabri. See lib. I. Od. vi. 3. S. iv. 14. 

Horace likewise frequently mentions Augustus's recovering 
from the Parthians the Roman ensigns taken from Crassus, and 
his wiping out that blot upon the Roman name. See lib. IV. 
Od. xv. 

This was so much the more honourable to Augustus, becau s 
his rival Antony, though he entered Parthia with a vast army 
on purpose to revenge the death of Crassus, and offered to with- 
dra\y his forces on condition that the Parthians would surrender 
the Roman eagles, could not obtain them, and being refused 
was forced to retire with disgrace, and considerable loss. See 
Plutarclfs life of Antony. 

* 3 The completing of the conquest of Spain was ascribed to 
Augustus, as is expressly declared by Livy ; who has this re- 
markable passage; " Hispania non quam Italia modo, sed quam 
" ulla pars terrarum bello reparando aptior erat locorum homi- 
" numque ingeniis. Itaque ergo prima Romanis inita pro- 
" vinciarum quae quidem continentis sint ; postremo omnium 
" nostra demum aetate ductu auspicioque Augusti Caesaris 
" perdomita est." Dec. III. lib. viii. 

The reduction of Aegypt is likewise claimed by Augustus, 
as we find it inscribed on the pedestal of the obelisk at the 
Porta del Popolo at Rome, which was erected in the eleventh 
consulate of Augustus, i. e. Anno U. C. 731. 

* 4 Probably this means no more than the opposite shores of 
the Mediterranean sea. Horace makes the like compliment 
to Rome : 

" Horrenda late nomen in ultimas 
" Extendat oras, qua medius liquor 
" Secernit Europen ab Afro, 

" Qua tumidus rigat arva Nilus." Lib. III. od. iii. 


Ver. 34-36. 
" * Stabunt et Parii lapides, spirantia signa ; 
" Assaraei proles, demissaeque ab Jove gentis 
" Nomina : Trosque parens, et Trojae Cynthius auctor." 

* This suited the taste of Augustus, who adorned his public 
buildings with statues. Suetonius tclls us, " Proximum a Diis 
" lmmortalibus honorem memorme ducum praestitit, qui nnpe- 

" rium Populi Romani ex minimo maximum reddidissent. 

" Itaque et statuas omnium triumphali effigic in utraque fori 
" sui porticu dedicavit. Professus est edicto commentum id se, 
" ut illorum velut ad exemplar, et ipse dum viveret, et inse- 
" quentium aetatum principes exigerentur a civibus." In Aug. 

Ver. 37—39. 

" Invidia infelix Furias, amnemque severum 
" Cocyti metuet; tortosque Ixionis + orbes, 
" Immanemque rotam ; et non exsuperabile saxum." 

-f- All the editions of Virgil at present (and indeed several of 
the manuscripts, and even some of the oldest) read Angues here, 
instead of Orbes. 

The reason why I suppose some critics of late, who have 
thought it was origirially Orbes, arc in the right, is, because the 
latter agrecs witli Ixion's punishment, arid the former does not. 

The punishment of Ixion consisted in being attached to a 
wheel, and whirled round impetuously by it; both which are 
expressed in thc " Tortosorbes, immanemque rotam," of Virgil. 

Orbis is the very word which Virgil uses, in the only place 

beside this where he speaks of Ixion's punishment, in his allowed 
works : and, if the Aetna be hi?, it is also used there of the 

I do not remember that Virgil, or any other of the Roman 
Poets, ever speak of Ixioifs being tormented with snakes ; or 
indeed of snakes being made use cf in the torments of Tartarus 
at all. The snakes of the Furies, or infernal tormentors of the 
old Poets, represented the stings of conscience ; the tortures 
and sufferings of the mind, not those of the body : but the 
modcrn painters have made so much use of serpents, in their 
representations of persons tormented in the other world, that 
has made a connexion between the tormented and snakes now, 
which was not of old : and may have been a chief reason, that 
the reading of Angues has prevailed so generally among us. 

I must just observe one thing more ; which is, the propriety 
of Virgil in the above passage, in another respect. The persons 
he is speaking of are the enemies of the Julian familv ; or of the 
faction (as he calls it) against the Caesars. These, he says, 



should be represented on the temple he would build to Augustus, 
as in the tortures of Tartarus ; and, more particularly, as 
punished in the samemanner as Ixion and Sisyphus. Ixion was 
punished there, for his ingratitude and impiety ; Sisyphus, as 
a villain and a robber. So that this is calling all the party 
against Augustus villains and ingrates ; and infers the highest 
compliment to that prince, at the same time that it is the most 
cruel of invectives against his enemies. 

Ver. 43, 44. 

" En age, segnes 

" Rumpe moras: vocat ingenti clamore * Cithaeron, 
" Taygetique canes, domitrixque Epidaurus equorum," 

* The boundary between Attica and Boeotia. Sir G. Whe- 
ler says, that he lodged on mount Parnes, not far from Cithae- 
ron, or part of the same ridge ; that there was a curious foun- 
tain hard by, where, he says, the wolves, bears, and wild boars 
come to drink; this mountain being a great covert for them : 
and that tliey were forced to stop up the entrance into their car, 
to secure them from the assaults of wild beasts, page 334. 

Ver. 51—59. 

" *' Optima torvae 

" Forma bovis, cui turpe caput, cui plurima cervix, 
" Et crurum tenus a mento palearia pendent. 
" Tum longo nullus lateri modus : omnia magna ; 
" Pes * B etiam: et camuris hirtae sub * 3 cornibus aures. 
" Nec mihi displiceat maculis insignis et albo : 
" Aut juga detrectans, interdumque aspera cornu, 
" Et faciem tauro propior : quaeque ardua tota, 
" Et gradiens ima verrit vestigia cauda." 

** Varro's description of the shape and colour of a good cow : 
" Ut sint oblongae, amplae, latis frontibus, oculis magnis, 
" pilosis auribus ; cervicibus crassis ac longis, a collo paleari- 
" bus demissis ; corpore amplo, bene costato ; — caudam pro- 

" fusam usque ad calces ut habeant." Lib. II. c. v. As to 

the colour, it is difficult to understand him ; his words are: 
" Colore potissimum nigro, dein rubeo," etc. If I understand 

him, he makes black and white mixed the worst colour. 

Columella prefers " colorum rubeum,vel fuscum," lib. VI. c. i. 
and gives the following description of a cow, c. xxi. " Vaccae 
" probantur altissimae formae, longaeque, frontibus latissi- 
" mis, pilosis auribus, palearibus et caudis amplissimis ; caetera 
" quoque fere eadem in feminis, quae et in maribus desideran- 
44 tur:" the description of which he had given before ; " Pa- 


" randi sunt boves, grandibus membris, fronte lata et crispa, 
" hirtis auribus, cervice longa et torosa, palearibus amplis, et 
" pene ad genua promissis, lateribus porrectis, ungulis magnis, 
" caudis longissimis." Cap. i. 

-* 2 Etiam is to be pronounced witli an emphasis, as an extra- 
ordinary case; because in other creatures, generally, a large 
foot is far from being a beauty. 

* 3 " Potius bovem emunt cornibus nigrantibus, quam albis." 
Var. lib. II. c. i. 

Ver. 60, 61. 

" * Aetas Lucinam justosque pati hymenaeos 
" Desinit ante decem, post quatuor incipit annos." 

* Varro says, " In bubulo pecore minoris emitis anniculam," 
that is, one of a year old, " et supra decem annorum ; quod a 
" bima aut trima fructum ferre incipit, neque longius post de- 
" cimum aunum procedit. Nam prima aetas omnis pecoris, et 

" extrema, sterilis." Lib. II. c. i. Again, he says, " Non 

" minores oportet inire bimas, ut trimae pariant ; eo melius, si 
" quadrimae." Lib. II. c. v. 

" In nostro orbe, Epiroticis bubus maxima laus ; a Pyrrhi, ut 
" ferunt, jam inde regis cura : id consequutus est non ante qua- 
" drimatum ad partus vocando : praegrandes itaque fuere, et 
" hodieque reliquiae stirpium durant." Plin. lib. VIII. c. xlv. 

Ver. 75—79. 

" Continuo pecoris ^ 1 generosi pullus in arvis 
" * 2 Altius ingreditur, et mollia crura reponit : 
" Primus et ire viam, et fluvios tentare minaces 
" Audet, et ignoto sese committere ponti: 
" Nec vauos horret strepitus." 

*' VirgiPs description of a beautiful horse w r as admired by 
the antients, as appears by Pliny. " Equorum forma, quales 
" maxime legi oporteat, pulcherrime quidem Virgilio vate ab- 
" soluta est." Lib. VIII. c. xlii. 

Varro's description is as follows: " Equi boni futuri signa 
" sunt, si cum gregalibus in pabulo contendit, in currendo, 
" aliave qua re, quo potior sit ; si cum flumen travehendum 
" est, gregi in primis praegreditur, ac non respectat alios:" 
and before, " Qualis futurus sit equus e pullo conjectari 
" potest, si caput habet non magnum, si est naribus non an- 
" gustis, auribus applicatis, non angustajuba crebrd, subtenui- 
" bus setis implicata in dexteriorem partem cervicis, pectus 
" latum et plenum, ventre modico, spina maxime duplici, un- 
" gulis duris." Lib. II. c. vii. 

* 2 I take " altius ingredi" to signify, to step boldly and 


genteelly, or with grace ; by lifting the feet high, and then set- 
ting them down again gently. 

Ver. 80—88. 

" Illi ardua cervix, 

" *' Argutumque caput, brevis alvus, * 2 obesaque terga ; 
" * 3 Luxuriatque toris animosum * 4 pectus: honesti 
" * 5 Spadices, glaucique ; color deterrimus albis, 
" Et gilvo : tum, si qua sonum procul arma dedere ; 
" -f- Stare loco nescit, micat * 6 auribus, et tremit artus, 
" Collectumque premens volvit sub naribus ignem. 
" Densa juba, et dextro jactata recumbit in armo. 
" At *' duplex agitur per lumbos spina : cavatque 
" Tellurem, et solido graviter sonat ungula cornu." 

-::.- 1 What Palladius calls " exiguum caput et siccum,"a sharp, 
brisk-looking head, Virgil expresses in one word, Argutum. 

" La tete du cheval doit atre menue, etroite, decharnee, et 
" seche. Cest" une partie essentielle de la beaute du cheval, 
" sans laquelle il ne peut etre agreable quoiqu'il eut tout le 
" reste du corps bien fait." Solleysel, c. ii. 

-X- 2 " La croupe dcit etre large et i*onde," etc. ibid. pag. 16. 

" De la derniere cote jusqifa, l'os de la hanche, qui est 

" proprement le flanc, il y doit avoir fort peu de distance." 

* 3 " Luxuriatque toris" may be said of a clumsy, heavy 
horse ; and therefore the Poet has very well qualified the expres- 
sion, by adding Animosum — that a horse must be full-chested, 
and have those muscles strong and vigorous, not overloaded. 

* 4 " La poitrine large et ouverteaux chevaux de legere taille 
" est toujours estimee." Sol. c. ii. p. 14. 

* 5 As Spadix signifies a reddish colour, this wonl ought, ac- 
cording to strictness, to mean what the French call Baie rouge 
— but, in general, I take Spadices to comprehend the several 

sorts of Bays ; and Glauci, different sorts of Grey. Glaucus 

certainly signifies Grey, as well as Blue : and in the Welsh lan- 
guage the word Glauce, when applied to Kepkal, or a horse, sig- 
nifies a dark Grey ; but when applied to other things, it signifies 

Blue. See Revelat. c. vi. 8. "ntttss yfrupos, which our 

translators render a pale horse. " Glaucas salices." Georg. 

IV. 187. 

T There is a very good imitation of this part of Virgil, in a 
Roman Poet of the third century, which may deserve to be in- 
serted here : 

" Illis ampla satis laevi sunt aequora dorso, 
" Immodicumque latus : parvaeque ingentibus alvi ; 



" Ardua frons, auresque agiles ; capitique decoro 
" Altus honos ; oculique vago splendore micantes. 
" Plurima se validos cervix resupinat in armos ; 
" Fumant humentes calidd de nare vapores. 
" Nec pes qfficium standi tenet ; ungula terram 
" Crebra ferit ; virtusque artus animosa fatigat. 
" Quin etiam gens ampla jacet trans ardua Calpes 
" Culmina, cornipedum late foecunda proborum. 
" Namque valent longos pratis intendere cursus; 
" Nec minor est illis Graio quam in corpore forma : 
" Nec non terribiles spirabile lumen anheli 
" Provolvunt fiatus ; et lumina vivida torquent." 

Nemesianus, Cynegetic. 256. 

,..s u -p\[ ne a f a jt une asS ez bonne remarque sur les oreilles d'uil 
" cheval ; car il dit que par le mouvement de ses oreilles on 
" peut juger de son intention et de st>n courage," etc. Soll. c. ii. 

* 7 " Un cheval doit avoir les reins doubles, qui est lorsqu'il 
" les a un peu plus eleves aux deux cotes qu'au milieu du dos, 
" et passant la main tout au long de 1'epine on la trouve large, 
" bien fournie, et double par le canal qui s'y fait. 11 Id. c. ii. 
p. 15. 

Solleysel remarks, " Si les epaules sont grosses, chargees de 
" chair et rondes, ce sera un defaut considerable ;" but he adds 
immediately aftervv r ai'ds, " Cest un defaut aux chevaux Fran- 
" cois, car, pour les Barbes et chevaux d'Espagne, ils n'en 
" sont pas pires, si d'ailleurs ils ont les qualites qu'on leur de- 
" mande. Meme j'ai vu peu de Barbes et de chevaux 
" dTEspagne avoir beaucoup d'epaules qu'ils ne fussent tres 
" bons." Cap. iv. p. 49. The same might be said of the 
Neapolitan horses, which Virgil probably had in view in this 

Ver. 95—102. 

" Hunc quoque, ubi aut morbo gravis, aut jam segnior annis 
" Deficit, abde domo, *' nec turpi ignosce senectae. 
" Frigidus in Venerem senior, frustraque laborem 
" Ingratum trahit : et, si quando ad praelia ventum est, 
" Ut quondam in stipulis magnus sine viribus ignis, 
" Incassiim furit. Ergo animos * a aevumque notabis 
" Praecipue: hinc alias artes, * a prolemque parentum: 
" Et quis cuique dolor victo, quae gloria palmae. 1 ' 

^ 1 If Virgil had meant as Ruaeus supposes, in his note upon 
this place, he might as easily have said, " et non turpi:" But 
I think he is to be understood in the literal sense, " nec ignosce 
" turpi senectae. Ne sis indulgentior senectuti turpi, quae 
" turpem prolem reddet;" Do not make any allowances to an 


old stalllon for what he has been. This sense suits best with 
what follows : 

" Friscidus in Venerum senior."- 

* 2 " Equorum et Equarum greges qui habere voluerunt, ut 
" habent aliqui in Peloponneso et in Apulia, primum spectare 
" oportet aetatem quam praecipiunt: Videndum ne sint mi- 
" nores trimae, majores decem annorum." Var. lib. ii. c. vii. 

* 3 Dr. Martyn, in opposition, as he owns, to the generality 
of the commentators, thinks the Poet means by '* prolem pa- 
" rentum," that we are to] observe what colts the horse pro- 
duces : but I cannot believe this is his meaning ; for he gives 
direction for choosing a )'oung stallion. I rather think he 
means that we are to inquire into the pedigree, and how the 
offspring of that race have proved. 

Ver. 103—107. 

" Nonne vides ? cum praecipiti certamine campum 
«« Corripuere, ruuntque effusi carcere currus ; 
«' Cum spes arrectae juvenum, exultantiaque haurit 
" Corda pavor pulsans : illi instant verbere torto, 
«' Et * proni dant lora." — 

«' * Non tam praecipites bijugo certamine campum 
«' Corripuere, ruuntque effusi carcere currus. 
*' Nec sic immissis aurigae undantia lora 
*' Concussere jugis, pronique in verbera pendent." 

Aen. V. 147. 

Ver. 113—117. 

" *' Primus Erichthonius currus et quatuor ausus 
" Jungere equos, rapidisque rotis insistere victor. 
" Fraena Pelethronii Lapithae, * 2 gyrosque dedere, 
«' Impositi dorso : atque equitem + docuere sub armis 
" Insultare solo, et gressus * 3 glomerare superbos." 

*' That they had menages for their war horses, either for 
the chariot or saddle, appears from this, and some of the fol- 
lowing passages; and likewise from Varro. " Equi quod alii 
«* sunt ad rem militarem idonei, alii acl vecturam, alii ad ad- 
«' missuram, alii ad cursuram, non item sunt spectandi atque 
«' habendi. Itaque peritus belli alios eligit, atque alit, ac 
" docet ; aliter quadrigarius, ac desultor. Neque idem qui 
«« vectarios facere vult, ad ephippium, aut ad praedam ; quod 
«' ut ad rem militarem, quod ibi ad castra habere volunt acres ; 

" sic contra in viis habere malunt placidos." For the former 

sort Virgil requires, 


" Calidum animis, ct cursibus acrem." Ver. 11'.). 
And again : 

" Qui spumas agit ore cruentas." Ver. 203. 

For the latter sort, 

" Qui molli feret esseda collo." Ver. 204. 

The art of managing horses, so as to leap at fuli speed from 

one to another, is mentioned by Homer, II. XV. See Mr. 

Pope's notes on ver. 824. 

It being objected by critics, that the custom of riding was 
not known in Greece at the time of the Trojan war; fiusta- 
thius answers, that, had Homer put the comparison in the 
mouth of one of his heroes, the objection had been just, and 
he guilty of an inconsistency ; but it is he himself who speaks : 
Saddle-horses were in use in his age, and any poet may be 
allowed to illustrate pieces of antiquity by images familiar to 
his own times. 

* a " Equi non forma, non velocitate conspicui : Sed nec 
" variare gyros in morem nostrum docentur." Tacitus, De 
mor. Germ. c. vi. 

t " Nam flecti facilis lascivaque colla secutus 
" Paret in obsequium lentae moderamine virgae : 
" Verbera sunt praecepta fugae; sunt verbera fraeni." 

Nemesianus, Cyneg. 268. 

* 3 Pliny, speaking of the horses of Gallicia and Asturia, 
says : " Non vulgaris in cursu gradus, sed mollis alterno cru- 
" rum explicatu glomeratio : unde equis tolutim capere in 
" cursus traditur arte." Lib. viii. c. xlii. 

Ver. 118—122. 

" * Aequus uterque labor : aeque juvenemque magistri 
" Exquirunt, calidumque animis, et cursibus acrem : 
" Quamvis saepe fuga versos ille egerit hostes, 
" Et patriam Epirum referat, fortesque Mycenas ; 
" Neptunique ipsa deducat origine gentem." 

* I take it that the Poet has in these verses a view to the 
language of the horse-coursers ; and means that whoever 
would purchase a fine horse must be sure that he is " juvenis, 
" calidus animis, et cursibus acer:" and not depend entirely 
upon the boasts of the horse-courser, 

Quamvis saepe fuga," etc. 



t See note on the place in Mr. Warton's Virgil, where it is 
proposed to place these three lines, " Quamvis," etc. imme- 
diately after 

" Nec turpi ignosce senectae." Ver. 96. 

Mr. Heath proposes the same conjecture, upon the same reasons. 

Ver. 124—129. 
" Omnes 

" Impendunt curas denso clistendere «- pingui, 
" Quem legere ducem, et pecori dixere maritum : 
" Pubentesque secant herbas, fluviosque ministrant, 
" Farraque ; ne blando nequeat superesse labori, 
" Invalidique patrum referant jejuuia nati: 
" IjDsa autem macie tenuant armenta volentes." 

* " Ante admissuram diebus trio-inta arietibus ac tauris plus 

•1"! • -i • • 1 

" cibi datur, ut vires habeant: feminis bubus demitur, quod 
" macescentes melius concipere dicuntur." Varr. lib. II. c. i. 
This he repeats, lib. II. c. v. 

Ver. 130—134. 

" Atqui ** ubi concubitus primos jam nota voluptas 
" Solicitat ; frondesque negant, et fontibus arcent : 
" Saepe etiam cursu quatiunt, et sole fatigant ; 
" Cum * 8 graviter tunsis gemit area frugibus, et cum 
" Surgentem ad Zephyrum paleae jactautur inanes." 

m l " Ubi voluptas solicitat primos concubitus" certainly 
means, wlien the cow or mare discovers an inclination to go to 
horse or bull. This desire of enjoyment the Poet represents so 
strong in them, that he intimates as if by instiiict they already 
know the pleasure before enjoyment: which I take to be the 
meauing of " jam nota voluptas," and put by way of autithesis 
to " primos concubitus." 

* 2 So Varro : " Initium admissionis facere oportet ab aequi- 
" noctio verno ad solstitium, ut partus idoneo tempore fiat. 
" Duodecimo euim mense, die clecimo, aiunt nasci." Lib. II. 
c. vii. Virgil hints that the most proper time is just after har- 

Vee. 135, 136. 

" Hoc faciunt, nimio ne luxu obtusior usus 
" Sit genitali * arvo, et sulcos oblimet inertes." 

^ * As Virgil, Georg. II. 324. speakiug of the earth, enlivens 
his discourse by metaphors taken from copulation ; so here he 
modestly veils his thoughts by expressions proper to tillage. 


Ver. 14G— 1.01. 

" Est lucos Silari circa, ilicibusque virentem 
" Plurimus Alburnum volitans, cui nomen *' Asilo 
" Romanum est ; * fl Oestron Graii vertere vocantes : 
" Asper, acerba sonans : quo tota exterrita sylvis 
" Ditiugiunt armenta ; furit mugitibus aether 
" Concussus, sylvaeque, et * a sicci ripa Tanagri." 

*' Asilus, otherwise called Tabanus ; vid. Plin. lib. II. 
c. xxviii. now called in Italy Tavano. 

" Quod vaccas aestate tabani concitare solent, et bestiolae 
" quaedam minutae sub cauda, ne concitentur, aliqui solent 
includere septis." Var. lib. II. c. v. 

*- 2 " Amplioris magnitudinis foetus quam sint caeterarum 
** apum, nonnulli putant esse Reges ; verum quidam Graecorum 
** auctores "Oir/rHs- appellant, ab eo quod exagitent, neque pa- 
" tiantur examina conquiescere." Col. lib. IX. c. xiv. 

* 3 Cluverius says, " Uterque fluvius Tanager et Calor 
" perennes habent fontes, et nullo anni tempore exsiccantur :" 
if so, the interpretation given by Ruaeus is wrong. Q. whether 
Sicci may not relate to the dry country round about this river, 
rather than to the bed of it ? Eutropius Paulinus, in natali 
Sancti Felicis, says : 

" Qui sicca Tanagri, 

" Quique colunt rigui felicia culta Galesi :" 

Where he makes an opposition between the " sicca Tanagri" 
and the " felicia culta Galesi." 

Ver. 166—169. 

** Ac primum laxos tenui de vimine circlos 
" Cervici subnecte : clehinc, ubi libera colla 
" Servitio assuerint ; ipsis e torquibus aptos 
" Junge ** pares, et coge * 2 gradum conferre juvencos." 

^ 1 Varro, speaking of this subject, says: " Sint pares, ne in 
" opere firmior imbecilliorem conficiat." Lib. I. c. xx. And, 
in the same chapter, he adds : " Novellos siquis emerit juvencos, 
" si eorum colla in furcas destitutas incluserit, ac dederit cibum; 
" diebus paucis erunt mansueti, et ad domandum proni." This 
Virgil likewise directs, in the passage above : 

" Laxos tenui de vimine circlos 

" Cervici subnecte." 

* s " In bubulo genere aetatis gradus dicuntur quatuor ; in 
" prima Vitulus, in secunda Juvencus, in tertia et quarta Taurus 
" et Vacea/" Var. lib. II. c. v. 

110 on the georgics. 

Ver. 173, 174. 

" Post valido nitens sub pondere faginus axis 
" *' Instrepat, et junctos temo trahat * a aereus orbes." 

% l Varro gives instructions that, " Si possis, per vicum aut 
" oppidum creber strepitus ac varietas rerum consuetudine 
" celerrima ad utilitatem adducit." Lib. I. c. xx. — This is 
better expressed by Virgil in one word, Instrepat; for every 
farmer is not situated near a town, and therefore Varro adds, 
" si possis." VirgiFs rule is more general. Another poet 
woukl have contented himself to have employed a phrase which 
should denote a very great weight, but Virgil uses Instrepat : 
this word is used more properly, for it not only expresses the 
greatness of the load, which occasions the skreaking of a waggon, 
but gives one a lively idea of such a carriage ; and intimates 
that the beasts must be accustomed to the noise, that they may 
not be frightened- 

* 2 It is very common at this time, in several parts of Italy, 
to cover the end of the waggon-pole with plates of brass. 

Ver. 190—192. 

" At, tribus exactis, ubi ** quarta accesserit aestas ; 
" Carpere mox * 2 gyrum incipiat, gradibusque sonare 
" Compositis: sinuetque alterna volumina crurum." 

*' " Sunt qui dicunt, post annum et sex menses equulum 
" domari posse ; sed melius post trimum, a quo tempore farrago 
" dari solet." Var. lib. II. c. vii. — He proceeds afterwards to 
prescribe the method of giving it. — And, lib. I. c. xxxi. he says: 
" Farragine equi et jumenta caetera verno tempore purgantur 
" et saginantur." 

* 2 " Certum flectit in orbem 

" Quadrupedis cursus." Ovid. Met. lib, VI. ver.225. 

-Ver. 196—201. 

" Qualis -::<- 1 hyperboreis * 2 Aquilo cum densus ab oris 
" Incubuit, Scythiaeque hiemes atque arida diifert 
" Nubila: tum segetes altae campique natantes 
" Lenibus horrescunt flabris, summaeque sonorem 
" Dant sylvae, longique urgent ad litora fluctus : 
" Ille volat, simul arva fuga, simul aequora verrens." 

^ 1 This word, which is of Greek extraction, is used as the 
superlative of Boreas : so that " Hyperboreis ab oris" signifies, 
from the most northern parts of the world. This is plain from 
Strabo, lib. I. where, after having ridiculed what Herodotus 
says of this word, he tells us expressly: " Hyperborei ii di- 


" cuntur, qui maxime sunt omnium Septentrionales. Porro 
" Septentrionalium terminus est Polus." "TTrepGopius rus Bo^i- 
o\xths XifsaQxi. "Ogos" Sg ruv fiopslojv o zsokos. 

* 2 u Densus Aquilo," a brisk and regular northern gale. 
Aquilo is the principal wincl which disperses the clouds and 
clears the air : and therefore when the gods had determined to 
drown the world, Ovid ingeniously supposes tliat Jupiter or- 
dered the dry winds, particularly this, to be imprisoned : 

c * Protinus Aeoliis Aquilonem claudit in antris, 
" Et quaecunque fugant inductas flamina nubes ; 
" Emittitque Notum." Ovid. Met. lib. I. 262. 

This wind was reckoned the most regular ; and therefore, 
when Horace woukl describe the middle state between good 
and bad fortune, and endeavouring by an allegory to represent, 
that he neither was puffed up by a continual course of prospe- 
rity, nor opprcssed by adversity ; he expresses the former state 
by the metaphor of a regular north wind ; and the latter by its 
opposite, the south : 

" Non agimur tumidis velis Aquilone secundo, 
M Non tamen adversis aetatem ducimus Austris." 

Lib. II. Epist. ii. ver. 201. 

The commentators are very much puzzled in explaining tliis 
passage ; for taking Densus to signify Vehemens, and Lenibus, 
Modicis, they find it difficult to reconcile one with the other. 
Father Catrou has attempted a new discovery, and supposes 
the former part of this comparison to be a description of a 
storm, and the latter of a gentle wind after the storm : but I 
fear this interpretation will neither bear application ; for Virgil 
is not speaking of the gentle motion of a horse, but his swiftness ; 
nor will it suit with the common rules of construction ; for 
M ille volat" must certainly be referred to " densus Aquilo," 
and consequently all the verses between must relate to the same ; 
unless the Father would make the storm cease in order to ex- 
plain the 3d, 4th, and 5th verses, and then raise it again to 
explain the 6th. — The whole difficulty will be removed by ren- 
dering " lenibus flabris," a smooth steady gale, or wind ; and 
" densus Aquilo," as before. — Observe the scope of Virgil's 
meaning. He is describing the smooth easy gallop of a horse 
with a great deal of speed. This he compares, not to a tempest, 
which would have been very improper, but to a north-wind in 
the summer-time blowing regularly, and uniform. " Summae 
" sylvae sonantes," and " longi fluctus urgentes ad littora," are 
the effect of such a wind, and " arva et aequora verrens" pro- 
perly applied to it — The sense I have here given to Lenis is not 


new 01* forced, and in this sense it is not inconsistent with swift- 
ness. Virgil applies this epithet to the Tyber, which he always 
represents as a swift river : 

" Leni fluit agmine Tybris." Aen. II. 782. 

And certainly it cannot be denied but that the swiftest motions 
may be very smooth. — Compare this description with Georg. I. 
318, etc. where Virgil has described a storm, and you will soon 
be convinced that he thought of nothing less than a storm or 
hurricane here. 

Ver. 202—204. 

" Hic, vel ad Elei metas et maxima campi 
" Sudabit spatia, et spumas aget ore cruentas ; 
" Belgica vel * l molli melius ferret * a esseda collo." 

** " Tender neck, unaccustomed to the yoke, not galled." 
So Catullus, in his Epithalamium Thetidos et Pelei, to express 
the peasants leaving their work, and the cattle not going to 
plough, says : 

" Rura colit nemo, mollescunt colla juvencis." 

* 2 This sort of chariot, which was first used by the Belgae 
and Britons, as we are informed by Caesar and others, was pro- 
bablv in VirgiPs time used likewise in Italy ; and is therefore 
here mentioned by him. I am of opinion, that Lucan hints at 
their beino- introduced in Italv, when he savs : 

" Et docilis rector monstrati Belga covini." Lib. I. 426. 

Covinus and Essedum signify the same thing, viz. a very light 
chaise, for expedition. — Silius Italicus, speaking of the Astures, 
says : 

" His parvus sonipes, nec Marti notus ; at idem 

" Aut inconcusso glomera-t vestigia dorso, 

" Aut molli pacata celer trahit esseda collo.' 1 Lib. III. 

Ver. 205—208. 
" Tum demum crassa magnum * farragine corpus 
" Crescere jam domitis sinito : namque ante domandum 
" Ingentes tollent animos ; prensique negabunt 
" Verbera lenta pati, et duris parere lupatis." 

* " Farrago fit optima, cum cantherini hordei decem modiis 
" jugerum obseritur circa aequiuoctium autumnale, — frigoribus, 
" cum alia pabula defecerunt, ea bubus caeterisque pecudibus 
" optime desecta praebetur ; et si depascere saepius voles, usque 
" in mensem Maium sufficit." Col. lib. II. c. xi.— ■ -" Cantheri- 
" num hordeum idem dicitur Hexastichum." C. ix. 


Ver. 220—236. 

'* ^ 1 Illi alternantes multa vi praelia miscent 
" Vulneribus erebris: lavit ater corpora sanguis, 
" Versaque in obnixos urgentur cornua vasto 
** Cum gemitu : reboant sylvaeque et magnus Olympus. 
" Nec mos bellantes una stabulare : sed alter 
" Victus abit, longeque ignotis exulat oris : 
" Multa gemens ignominiam, plagasque superbi 
" Victoris, tum quos amisit inultus amores : 
" Et stabula aspectans regnis excessit avitis. 
" Ergo omni cura vires exercet, et inter 
" Dura jacet pernox instrato saxa cubili : 
" Frondibus hirsutis et carice pastus acuta : 
" Et tentat sese, atque irasci in * 2 cornua discit 
" Arboris obnixus trunco : ventosque lacessit 
" Ictibus, et sparsa ad pugnam proludit arena. 
" Post, ubi collectum robur viresque receptae, 
** Signa movet, praecepsque oblitum fertur in hostem." 

** The strength, gravity, and solemnity of this description is 
very remarkable How few dactyls ! 

It seems to have been a particular favourite of the old poets. 

Lucan has imitated it in his Pharsalia, lib. II. 601. Statius, in 
his Thebais, lib. II. 321. and Silius Italicus, at the beginnino- of 
his XVIth book. & 

* 2 Not his own horns, but the enemy's. 

Ver. 258—263. 

" Quid juvenis, magnum cui versat in ossibus igneni 
" Durus amor ? nempe abruptis turbata procellis 
" Nocte natat caeca serus freta : quem super * ingens 
" Porta tonat caeli et «-copulis illisa reclamant 
" Aequora : nec miseri possunt revocare parentes, 
" Nec moritura super crudeli funere virgo.*' 

* This certainly means the palace of Jove. See La Cerda, 
and Dr. Martyn. 

Ver. 264—268. 

" Quid lynces Bacchi variae, et genus acre luporum, 
" Atque canum ? quid, quae *' imbelles dant praelia cervi? 
" Scilicet ante omnes -mt furor est insignis equarum: 
" Et mentem Venus ipsa dedit, quo tempore Glauci 
" * 3 Potniades ** malis membra absumpsere quadrigae." 

•^ 1 " Naturally not of a warlike disposition." — Sallust uses 
this word in the same sense in his character of Atherbal, Bell. 
Jugurth. " Quietus, imbellis, placidus ingenio." 



* s Horace says to an old bawd : 

" Tibi flagrans amor et libido, 

*' Quae solet matres furiare equorum, 

" Saeviet circa jecur." Lib. I. Od. xxv. 

* 3 " Est etiam ante Thebas fons Dirce et Potniae ; ad quas 
" ferunt Glaucum Potniensem a Potniadibus equabus fuisse 
" discerptum prope ipsam urbem." Strabo, lib. IX. 

* 4 This expression, " mahs absumere," certainly carried an 
idea in the Roman language of something more ravenous than 
the literal construction imports in ours : for I observe that the 
Harpy Celaeno, when she prophesies to Aeneas and his compa- 
nions that they should be reduced to such extreme hunger, as 
to be forced to devour their own tables, makes use of the same 
expression : 

" Vos dira fames, nostraeque injuria caedis 

" Ambesas subigat malis absumere mensas." Aen. III. 257. 

Ver. 269—279. 

" Illas ducit amor trans Gargara, transque sonantem 
" * x Ascanium : superant montes, et flumina tranant : 
" Continuoque avidis ubi subdita flamma medullis, 
" Vere magis (quia vere calor redit ossibus) illae 
" * 2 Ore omnes versae in Zephyrum, stant rupibus altis, 
" Exceptantque leves auras: et i"* 3 saepe sine ullis 
" Conjugiis, vento gravidae (mirabile dictu) 
" Saxa per et scopulos et depressas convalles 
" Diffugiunt: non, Bure, tuos, neque Solis ad ortus, 
" In * 4 Boream, Caurumque, aut unde nigerrimus Auster 
" Nascitur, et pluvio contristat -» 5 frigore caelum." 

*' Strabo places Mysia and Phrygia on the banks of this 
river, and the Palus Ascania, lib. XII. — That it is a fruitful 
country appears from Homer : H, Aox.a.iiW,s IgiCwXaxos-. II. R. 793. 

* 2 I take the meaning of this, and what follows afterwards, 
" non, Eure, tuos," etc. to be, " that mares are impregnated 
" by the west-wind ; and after they are impregnated, they then 
" run, not to the east, but to the north or south." 

Dr. Martyn observes, that commentators dispute much about 
this expression, " Nigerrimus Auster pluvio contristat frigore 
" caelum ;" the south, as they say, being commonly a warm 
wind. But the Doctor well observes from Columella, that the 
time when mares are seized with this fury is about the vernal 
equinox. I think this is a very lively description in few words 
of the black melancholic weather, attended with cold and rains, 
which we usually have, even though the wind is south, about 
the equinox, the month of March. 


•f This is not any poetical fancy of Virgil's. It was com- 
monly believed in his time ; and Columella makes no manner of 
doubt of tlie truth of it. — " Nec duhium, quin aliquot regio- 
" nibus tanto flagrent ardore coeundi feminae, ut etiamsi marem 
" non habeant, assidua et nimia cupiditate figurantes sibi ipsae 

" venerem (cohortalium more avium) vento concipiant. 

" Cum sit notissimum etiam in sacro monte Hispaniae, qui pro- 
" currit in occidentem juxta Oceanum, frequenter equas sine 
" coitu ventrem pertulisse, foetumque educasse, qui tamen 
" inutilis est, quod triennio, prius quam adolescat, morte ab- 
" sumitur." Lib. VI. c. xxvii. 

* 3 " Constat in Lusitania circa Ulyssiponem oppidum et 
" Tagum amnem equas Favonio flante obversas animalem con- 
" cipere spiritum, idque partum fleri, et gigni peniicissimum 
" ita, sed triennium vitae non excedere." Plin. 1. VIII. c. 42. 

Virgil is more modest. " In foetura res iricredibilis est in 

" Hispania, sed est vera ; quod in Lusitania ad Oceanum in ea 
" regione ubi est oppidum Olysippo, monte Tagro, quaedam e 
" vento concipiant certo tempore equae ; ut hic gallinae quoque 
" solent, quarum ova imrmy.i% appellant. Sed ex his equis, qui 
" nati pulli, non plus triennium vivunt." Var. De re rust. 
lib. II. c. i. 

* 4 " In Boream, Caurumve, aut," etc. that is, as soon as 
thev have conceived, they run towards the North or the South ; 
and it is expressly afiirmed by Pliny that they do so after copu- 
lation. " Equae a coitu solae animalium currunt ex adverso 
" Aquilonum Austrorumve prout marem aut feminam conce- 
" pere." Lib. X. c. lxiii. 

* 5 Frigus does not always signify extreme cold or frost ; but 
moderate, as the coolness of the morning or evening in Summer; 
as plainly appears from verse 321 to 337, where Virgil speaks 
of " frigidus Vesper," and, " Luciferi primo cum sidere," when 
he is speaking of the Summer. 

Ver. 284, 285. 

" Sed fugit interea, fugit irreparabile tempus, 
" Singula dum capti circumvectamur * amore." 

* The Poet corrects himself very prettily for having dwelt 
so long on this subject, and lays the fault on love, the effects of 
which he feels, and is himself insnared whilst he is describing 
the passion. 

Ver. 295—304. 

" Incipiens, stabulis edico in ^ 1 mollibus herbam 
" Carpere oves, dum mox frondosa reducitur aestas : 
" Et multa duram stipula iilicumque maniplis 
" Sternere subter humum : glacies ne frigida laedat 

I 2 


" Molle pecus, scabiemque ferat ; turpesque podagras. 

" Post, hinc digressus, jubeo frondentia capris 

" Arbuta sufficere, et fluvios praebere recentes ; 

" Et stabula a ventis hiberno opponere soli 

" Ad medium conversa diem : cum frigidus olim 

" Jam cadit, extremoque irrorat *- 2 Aquarius anno." 

*' " Cum aliquot dies steterunt, subjicere oportet virgulta 
" alia, quo mollius requiescant, purioresque sint; libentius enim 
" ita pascuntur." Varr. lib. II. c. ii. — In the same place he fur- 
ther directs ; " Stabula idoneo loco ut sint, ne ventosa." — And 
says in the next chapter, that the same rule will serve for 

* s We see this sign always represented as pouring out of an 

Ver. 305—307. 

" Hae quoque non cura nobis leviore tuendae, 
" Nec minor usus erit : quamvis* Milesia magno 
" Vellera mutentur, Tyrios incocta rubores." 

* " Lana laudatissima Apula ; et quae in Italia Graeci pecoris 
" appellatur, alibi Italica ; tertium locum Milesiae oves obti- 
" nent." Plin. 1. VIII. c. xlviii. 

Ver. 311—313. 

" Nec minus interea barbas incanaque menta 
" Cinyphii tondent * hirci, setasque comantes ; 
" Usum in castrorum et miseris velamina nautis." 

* This is certainly used in the nominative plural. Making 
the goats give up their beards themselves for the service of 
man, is very poetical. So, 

" Dant arbuta sylvae." Georg. II. ver. 520. 

and Virgil very frequently uses the same manner of expression. 
Putting Hirci in the genitive case, or introducing a different read- 
ing (Hircis) is losing the whole beauty and energy of the thought. 

Varro speaks thus on this very subject — " Ut fructum 

" ovis e lana ad vestimentum, sic capra pilos ministrat ad usum 
" nauticum, et ad bellica tormenta, et fabrilia vasa." — If a 
grave prose writer may say " Capra ministrat pilos ad usum 
" nauticum," etc. surely a Poet may be allowed to say, " Hir- 
" cus tondet barbam in usum castrorum," etc. 
Ovid celebrates the Cinyphian as a corn country. 

" Cinyphiae segetis citius numerabis aristas." 

De Ponto. lib. II. Ep. vii. 


Ver. 316, 317. 


" Atque ipsae memores redeunt In tecta ; * suosque 
" Ducunt ; et gravido superant vix ubere limen." 

* Dr. Martyn observes that most of the commentators follow- 
ing Servius, interpret Suos, their young ones; but that La 
Cerda thinks it means, their pastors. The former opinion has 
nothing singular in it, for if the dams go home, it must be ima- 
ginod that the young ones do not stay behind. — I take the 
latter to be Virgil's meaning, that instead of being driven home 
to be milked, they even of themselves shew their conductors the 
way ; which is likewise true, and enlivens the former part of the 

Ver. 322—334. 

Zephyris cum laeta vocantibus aestas, 

" In saltus utrumque gregem atque in pascua mittes ; 

" Luciferi *' primo cum sidere frigida rura 

" Carpamus : dum mane novum, dum gramina canent, 

" Et ros in tenera pecori gratissimus herba est. 

" Inde, ubi quarta * 2 sitim caeli collegerit hora, 

" Et cantu querulae rumpent arbusta cicadae ; 

" Ad puteos, aut alta greges ad stagna jubeto 

" Currentem ilignis potare canalibus undam : 

" Aestibus et mediis umbrosam exquirere vallem : 

" Sicubi magna Jovis antiquo robore quercus 

" Ingentes tendat ramos, aut sicubi * 3 nigrum 

" Ilicibus crebris sacra nemus accubet umbra." 

*' " Aestate prima luce exeunt pastum, propterea quod tunc 
" herba roscida meridianam, quae est aridior, jucunditate prae- 
" stat : sole exorto potum propellunt, ut redintegrantes rursus 
" ad pastum alacriores faciant. Circiter meridianos aestus, 
" dum defervescant, sub umbriferas rupes et arbores patulas 
" subjiciunt, quoad refrigerato aere vespertino rursus pascant 
" ad solis occasum. — Ab occasu parvo intervallo interposito 
" ad bibendum appellunt, et rursus pascunt quoad contene- 
" bravit : iterum enim tum jucunditas in herba redintegravit." 
Varro. lib. II. c. ii. — Columella says, "a kal. Juniis, si jam de- 
" ficit viridis herba, usque in ultimum Autumnum frondem 
" caesam pecori praebebimus," lib. XI. c. ii. 

* s " Collegerit sitim caeli;" has brought a genei*al drought, 

so that the heaven itself has drunk up the dew. Or by 

" sitim caeli," he means the dew, which the heaven has 
sucked up. When the fourth hour has drawn up the dew, 
which he calls the thirst of heaven, pr what the heaven thirsts 



* 3 Virgil uses the same epithet again, Aen. IX. 381. 

" Sylva fuit late dumis atque ilice nigra 
" Horrida." 

Ver. 335-338. 

" Tum tenues dare rursus aquas, et pascere rursus 
" Solis ad occasum : cum frigidus aera Vesper 
" Temperat, et saltus reficit jam roscida Luna; 
" Litoraque halcyonem resonant, et * acanthida dumi. 

* " Acanthis, avis minima, duodenos gignit." Plin. lib. X. 
c. lxiii. " Acanthis in spinis vivit." Iclem, 1. X. c. lxxiv. 

Ver. 339—345. 
" Quid tibi pastoi*es efe 1 Libyae, quid pascua versu 
" Prosequar, et raris habifata * 2 mapalia tectis? 
" Saepe diem noctemque et totum ex ordine mensem 
" Pascitur, itque pecus longa in deserta sine ullis 
" Hospitiis : tantum campi jacet : omnia secum 
" Armentarius Afer agit ; tectumque, laremque, 
" Armaque, Amyclaeumque canem, Cressamque pharetram." 

& 1 That there were Nomades in Arabia and several other 
parts of the world formerly, as well as there are at present, is 
manifest from history ; but as they were so remarkable in Africa, 
that a large district of the country was from them called Nu- 
midia, therefore Virgil very properly lays the scene of this di- 
gression there. — Strabo, speaking of Numidia, says, " Singu- 
" lare quiddam hominibus iis accidit. Nam cum regionem 
" uberem colerent nisi quod feris abundabat, his omissis, et agri 
" tuto colendi studio, in sese manus converterunt, agro feris 
" dimisso. Itaque contigit eis, ut vagi et patriae expertes 
" vitam agerent ; haud aliter quam qui ob inopiam et locorum 
" sterilitatem, et aeris inclementiam ad ejusmodi vitae genus 
" adiguntur. Hinc Massaesylii Nomadum seu Numidarum no- 
" men sunt adepti." N. B. The Greek name is Nopnzo^us- : and 
this was the name by which all the people who lived in so un- 
settled amanner were distinguished. So Strabo, just before the 
abovementioned passage, speaking of the Carthaginians, says : 
" Africam omnem sibi subjecerunt, quae non habitaretur ab 
" hominibus incertas ad sedes vagantibus. Tr,v A&uwv xoflzxlri- 
" travVo 7ta.<?ct.v of/iv fx,r, No/aacfixwr oTovt' r>v ojxeTv." 

* 2 Sallust, in his Jugurthine war, speaking of the old inha- 
bitants of Africa, gives this account of their Mapalia. — " Post- 
" quam in Hispania Hercules, sicut Afri putant, interiit; exer- 
" citus ejus compositus ex gentibus variis, amisso duce, brevi 
" dilabitur. Ex eo numero Medi, Persae, etc, navibus in Afri- 


" cam transvecti. Hique alveos navium inversos pro tuguriis 
" habuere." — And then he adds ; " Caeterum adhuc aedificia 
" Numidarum agrestium, quae mapalia illi vocant, oblonga, in- 

" curvis lateribus tecta, quasi navium carinae sunt." 

Dausqueius iu his notes on Silius Italicus, understands by 
" raris tectis," thin slight covering, " Vento scilicet et aurCi 
" perjlabilibus" The Mapalia being made only of reed and 
cane, asappears by that passage of Silius, which he is explain- 

" Castra levi calamo cannaque intorta palustri, 
" Qualia Maurus amat dispersa mapalia pastor." 

Lib. XVII. 

But as Silius, in the same place, calls Mapalia, dispersa, there 
is as good reason to argue from by raris tectis, is meant, scat- 
tered up and down the country. 

" Numidae Nomades appellantur a permutandis pabulis, ma- 
" palia sua, hoc est, domus plaustris circumferentes." Plin. 
lib. V. c. iii, 

Ver. 346—348. 

" Non secus ac patriis acer Romanus in armis. 
" * Injusto sub fasce viam cum carpit,et hosti 
" Ante expectatum positis stat in agmine castris." 

*■ It may well be supposed, that the ordinary baggage soldiers 
were obliged to carry with them, was esteemed " justus fascis," 
a reasonable burden, (of this see Vegetius); whatever exceeded 
this might properly be called " injustus fascis." Such a load 
they may be supposed to carry with them upon sudden marches, 
when they went to encamp themselves unexpectedly : upon 
which occasion every soldier might probably be obliged to carry 
palisades, a spade, or the like ; and whatever was necessary 
for such a hasty encampment- According to this interpretation, 
there is no difficulty in the construction of the words, and the 

application of the comparison is just. — L. Florus, speaking 

of the strict discipline used by Scipio in his camp, when he be- 
sieged Numantia, says: " Tunc acrius in castris quamin campo, 
" nostro cum milite, quam cum Numantino, praeliandum fuit. 
" Quippe assiduis et injustis et servilibus maxime operibus 
" attriti,"" etc. Lib. II. c. xviii. What this strict discipline was, 
which Florus terms injusta opera, we may learn from Livy's 

account of the same war. Epitome, lib. ivii. (Quaer. If Vir- 

gil, by his injusto subfasce, does not refer to some remarkable 
campaign, about the time he was writing his Georgics, in which 
the same sort of discipline was required ? and uses this epithet 
on purpose to shew the allusion ?) 



Ver. 349—351. 

" At non, qua Scythiae gentes, *' Moeoticaque unda, 
" Turbidus, et torquens flaventes * 2 Ister arenas : 
" Quaque redit medium Rhodope porrecta sub axem." 

*' Ovid, who was banished to the mouth of the Danube, and 
lived there some years, writes an essay in his third book De 
Tristibus, entitled, " Quibuscum gentibus vivat ;" and describes 
the country in which he then was in such a manner, that he seems 
almost to have copied Virgil ; which shewshow exact Virgil was 
in describing a country at that time so little known ; and how 
much care he took to be well informed of what he wrote. 

— " Jacet aggeribus niveis informis, et alto 
" Terra gelu late, septemque assurgit in ulnas. 
" Semper hiems, semper spirantes frigora cauri." 

Ver. 356. 

" At cum tristis hiems squallentia protulit oi-a, 

" Terraque marmoreo est candida facta gelu: 
" Dum patet et Boreas, et nix jactata sub arcto ; 

" Tum patet has gentes axe tremente premi. 
" Nix jacet ; et jactam nec sol pluviaeque resolvunt: 

" Indurat Boreas, perpetuamque facit. 
" Ergo, ubi delicuit nondum prior, altera venit: 

" Et solet in multis bima manere locis." 

Ovid. De Trist. lib. IIL El. x. 

* 2 The Danubius ; known formerly by both names, as Ovid 
testifies, when he calls it Binominis Istri, lib. I. De Ponto, 
Epist. ix. — And mentions Ister by the name Danubius, lib. IV. 
De Pont. Ep. ix. 

Ver. 352—359. 

" Ulic clausa tenent stabulis armenta : -*' neque ullae 
" Aut herbae campo apparent, aut arbore frondes; 
" Sed jacet aggeribus niveis informis, et alto 
" Terra gelu late, septemque assurgit in ulnas. 
" Semper * 2 hiems, semper * 3 spirantes frigora cauri. 
" Tum sol pallentes haud unquam discutit umbras: 
" Nec cum invectus equis altum petit aethera ; nec cum 
" Praecipitem oceani rubro lavit aequore currum." 

^c- 1 Horace gives the like description : 

" Pone me pigris ubi nulla campis 

" Arbor aestiva recreatur aura: 

" Quod latus mundi nebulae malusque 

" Jupiter urget." Lib. I. Od. xxii. 


* 2 Varro, speaking of the advantageous situation of Italy, 
says; " Haec temperatior pars est Europac, quam interior ; nam 
" intus pcne sempiternae hiemes. Neque mirum, quod sunt 
" regiones inter circuitum septentrionalem et inter cardinem 
" caeli, ubi sol etiam sex mensibus continuisnon videtur :" which 
Virgil describes as follows, 

" Tum sol pallentes," etc. Lib. I. c. ii. 

Virgil cannot here mean, that the winter in that country lasts 
the whole year; at least with the severity he describes : that 
would be inconsistent with other passages of his account : but 
when the winter oncebegins, it continues uninterrupted, as it is 
known to do in the most northern countries : no zephyrs during 
the winter months ; no thaws, as in Italy. So Ovid, describing 
the same country as Virgil does, calls the Snow there Perpe- 
tuam; and yet speaking of that country at the time of the Vernal 
Equinox, he says : 

" At mihi sentitur nix verno sole soluta, 
" Quaeque lacu duro vix fodiantur aquae. 

" Nec mare concrescit glacie: nec, ut ante, per Istrum 
" Stridula Sauromates plaustra bubulcus agit." 

Trist. lib. III. El. xii. 

Yet in another place he says of this country ; 

" Nunquam sine frigore caelum, 

" Glebaque canenti semper adusta gelu." Lib. V. c. iii. 

And, again, speaking of the same, he says; 

" Tu neque ver sentis cinctum florente corona, 
" Tu neque messorum corpora nuda vides. 

" Nec tibi pampineas autumnus porrigit uvas: 

" Cuncta sed immodicum tempora frigus habent. — 

" Rara nec hic felix in apertis eminet arvis 
" Arbor; et in terra est altera forma maris. 11 

De Ponto, lib. III. Epist. i. 

" Hiemi continuatur hiems." Lib. I. Ep. ii. 

This is imitated by Silius in Hannibal's march. 

" Nullum ver usquam, nullique aestatis honores. 

" Sola jugis habitat diris, sedesque tuetur 

" Perpetuas deformis hiems." Lib. III. 

* 3 The sound of these words well suits a northern throat. 
man seems hoarse when he pronounces them. 


Ver. 360—366. 

" *' Concrescunt subitae currenti in flumine * s crustae : 
" Undaquejam tergo ferratos sustinet orbes, 
" Puppibus illa prius patulis, nunc hospita plaustris : 
" Aeraque dissiliunt vulgo, vestesque rigescunt 
" Indutae, * 3 caeduntque securibus humida vina; 
" Et totae solidam in glaciem vertei*e lacunae; 
" Stiriaque impexis induruit liorrida * 4 barbis. 

" *' Quid loquar ut cuncti concrescant frigore rivi, etc. 
" Quaque rates ierant pedibus nunc itur, et undas 

" Frigore concretas ungula pulsat equi: 
" Perque novos pontes, subterlabentibus undis, 

" Ducunt Sarmatici barbara plaustra boves." 

See more to this purpose, Ovid, De Ponto, lib. IV. Ep. vii. ad 

This Ovid supposes to be so strange to the Romans that he 
adds ; 

" Vix equidem credar, sed cum sint praemia falsi 
" Nulla, ratam debet testis habere fidem: 

" Vidimus ingentem glacie consistere pontum, 

" Lubricaque immotas testa premebat aquas." Ovid. 

* 2 What Virgil calls Crusta, Ovid expresses by Testa. 

* 3 " Nudaque consistunt formam servantia testae 

" Vina; nec hausta meri, sed data frusta bibunt." Ovid. 

Again, he says; 

" Ipse vides gelido stantia vina gelu." 

De Ponto, lib. IV. Ep. vii. 

* 4 " Saepe sonant moti glacie pendente capilli, 
" Et nitet inducto candida barba gelu." 

De Ponto, lib. IV. Ep. vii. 

That they wore long beards. Lib. V. El. vii. Trist. 

" Non coma, non ulla barba resecta manu." 

Ver. 371, 372. 

" Hos non immissis canibus, non cassibus ullis, 
" Puniceaeve agitant pavidos formidine * pennae." 

* So Lucan ; 

" Sic dum pavidos formidine cervos 

" Claudat odoratae metuentes aera pennae." 

Phars. IV. 437. 


Veh. 379, 380. 

" Noctem ludo ducunt, et pocula laeti 

" -* Fermento atque acidis imitantur vitea sorbis." 

* Motraye in his travels mentions a liquor called Boza, used 
in Crim Tartary; which he describes as a thick white liquor, 
made of a certain quantity of millet flour and water, which 
ferments together, and will fuddle any one who drinks much of 
it. Book II. c. ii. § 3. 

Ver. 381—383. 

" Talis Hyperboreo septem subjecta trioni 
" Gens effraena virum * l Riphaeo tunditur Euro; 
" Et pecudum fulvis velantur corpora * 2 setis." 

*' The antients had a very confused and uncertain notion of 
the Riphaean mountains ; as appears from Athenaeus, Ste- 
phanus, and others ; but the most common opinion was, that 
they were the most distant ridge of mountains towards the 
north, or rather north-east, from Italy; the country of the 
Getae, and Sarmatae. — It was likewise believed that those 
mountains were joined to Thrace, etc. and likewise to the Alps 
by a continued chain. This Virgil expressly declares a few 
lines before, in this same book ; 

" Quaque redit medium Rhodope porrecta sub axem :" 

And, again, in the fourth book, he hints the same in the story of 
Orpheus, when he makes him ramble wildly over mountains and 
deserts. He names, " Hyperboreas glacies, Tanaim nivalem, 
" Riphaeas pruinas, et Oeagrium Hebrum." 

* 9 " Pellibus hirsutis arcent mala frigora bracchis." Ovid. 

Again : 

" Pellibus et laxis arcent mala frigora bracchis. 11 

Trist. lib. V. El. vii. 

Of the custom among the barbarous nations of covering them- 
selves with skins, see Tacitus De mor. Germ. — Caesar, lib. VI. 
— Ammian, lib. XXXI. c. ii. — Justin. lib. II. — Senec.Epist. XC. 

— Arrian, lib. VIII. — and Strabo, lib. XVII. Several na- 

tions in America have still no other habit : no more have the 

Ver. 386—389. 

" Continuo greges villis lege mollibus albos. 

" Illum autem, quamvis aries sit candidus ipse, 
" * Nigra subest udo tantum cui lingua palato, 


" Rejice, ne maculis infuscet vellera pullis 

" Nascentum." 

Varro, speaking De Arietibus, says : " Animadvertendum 
" quoque linguane nigra aut variasit, quod fere qui ea habent, 
" nigros aut varios procreant agnos." Lib. II. c. ii. 

Ver.394, 395. 

" Cui lactis amor, cytisum, * lotosque frequentes 

" Ipse manu, salsasque ferat praesepibus herbas." 

* The Lotus here meant is undoubtedly the Italian, which 
Pliny says was very common amongst them, but different from 
the African : " Et ipsam Italiae familiarem, sed terra mutatam." 
Lib. XIII. c. xvii. 

Ver. 404—408. 

" Nec tibi cura canum fuerit postrema: sed una 
" Veloces * J Spartae catulos, acremque Molossum 
" Pasce sero pingui: nunquam custodibus illis 
" Nocturnum stabulis furem, incursusque luporum, 
" Aut impacatos a tergo horrebis # 8 Iberos." 

** " Boni seminii canes a regionibus appellantur Lacones, 
" Epirotici, Sallentini." Varro, lib. II. c. ix. — In the same 
chapter giving directions to feed dogs with bread and milk, he 
gives this reason for it : " Quod eo consueti cibo uti, a pecore 
" non cito desciscunt." 

* 2 " Cantabros, qui maxime hodie latrocinia exercent, iisque 
" vicinos Caesar Augustus subegit: et qui ante Romanorum 
" socios populabantur, nunc pro Romanis arma ferunt, ut 
" Coniaci et qui ad fontes Iberi amnis accolunt," etc. Strabo, 

lib. III. As the Iberi were famous for robberies, Virgil well 

employs their names for common thieves. 

By Impacatos Virgil restrains his meaning so, as to extend it 
only to such wild Iberi as were not yet civilized by Augustus. 
Horace mentions the Cantaber on the coasts conquered by 
Augustus : 

" Servit Hispaniae vetus hostis orae 

" Cantaber, sera domitus catena." Lib. III. Od. viii. 

" A tergo ;" whilst the shepherd is leading his fiock, accord- 
ing to the custom in Italy, the sheep-stealers might easily come 
behind and pick up a sheep, were there not dogs to watch. 

Ver. 409—413. 

" Saepe etiam cursu timidos agitabis *' onagros ; 
" Et canibus leporem, canibus venabere damas. 


" Saepe *- 8 volutabris pulsos sylvestrlbus apros 
" Latratu turbabis agens : montesque per altos 
" Ingentem clamore premes ad retia cervum." 

*' Varro says ; " Asinorum genera duo. Unum ferum, quos 
" vocant Onagros ; in Phrygia et Lycaonia sunt greges multi: 
" alterum mansuetum, ut sunt in Italia omnes. Ad semina- 
" tionem onagrus idoneus, quod e fero fit mansuetus facile, et e 

" mansueto ferus nunquam." Lib. II. c. vi. That the 

Romans used to eat the wild ass appears from Pliny. — " Pullos 
" asinarum epulari Maecenas instituit, multum eo tempore 
" pi*aelatus onagris." Lib. VIII. c. 43. And in the following 
chapter he says : " Pullis onagrorum, seu praestantibus sapore, 
Africa gloriatur." 

* 2 That is; " Loca ubi se volutant," where they wallow. 
Varro uses the same word, speaking of boars : " Admissuras 
" cum faciunt, prodigunt in lutosos limites ac lustra, ut volu- 
" tentur in luto ; quae est illorum requies, ut lavatio hominis." 
Lib. II. c. iv. 

Ver. 414, 415. 

" Disce et odoratam stabulis accendere cedrum, 
" ** Galbaneoque agitare graves nidore * 2 chelydros." 

*' Columella mentions Galbanum being an antidote against 
serpents. — " Cavendum ne (pulli) a serpentibus adflentur, 
" quarum odor tam pestilens est, ut interimat universos: id 
" vitatur saepius incenso galbano, etc. Quorum omnium fere 
" nidoribus praedicta pestis submovetur." Lib. VIII. c v. 

* a A sort of serpent, which Nicander, ver. 411. who other- 
wise calls it ApVvav, elegantly describes as exhaling a smoking 

K.r,pu <ia toi Spuivzo 7ri<pzuo-x.cO, tov <$s "XjiXuSqov 
'E^erepoj\imi. ro S' o.tio xpoos e^qov zrflzi 

OToV OT£ ZjXscSowJIz. TZZpl 0~X.u\x K0C.L 0£§'/i 'iTtTtCiJV 

Ynx^iflo^zvoi (AudowGw vii dqQviXoiai XdQciqyoi, etc. 

Lucan, in his description of the serpents of Africa, speaking 
of the Chelvdri, calls them, " tracti via fumante," i. e. taken 
from the high way, which smokes with their steam. Pharsal. 
IX. 217. — By this it appears, that the distinguishing character 
of the Chelydri was, that they exhaled a smoking noisome 
stink, which Virgil certainly would not omit, and, therefcre, as 
he has placed Nidore after Graves, so must it be joined with it 

inconstruction. Ruaeusand other interpreters join Galbaneo 

with Nidore : and it may be so too, if Galbaneo cannot be used 
substantively, but then Nidore must be repeated. 


Ver. 445—451. 
" Dulcibus idcirco fluviis pecus omne *' magistri 
" Perfundunt ; udisque aries in gurgite villis 
" Mersatur, missusque secundo defluit amni : 
" Aut tonsum tristi contingunt corpus * 2 amurca ; 
" Et spumas miscent argenti, vivaque sulfura, 
" Idaeasque pices, et pingues unguine ceras, 
" Scillamque helleborosque graves, nigrumque bitumen." 

*' This was the proper title given to the bailiff, or superin- 
tendent over the several shepherds or herdmen, who had the 
care of large flocks, or herds ; his business was to govern the 
rest, to see they did their dutj^, and to provide every thing ne- 
cessary both for the shepherds and their flocks ; as appears 
plainly from Varro, who observes, that ten or twelve shepherds 
were necessary to take care of a thousand sheep ; and that the 
head person, who presided over them, was called Magister. 
" Oportet pastores esse omnes sub uno magistro pecoris; eum 
" esse majorem natu potius quam alios, et peritiorem quam 
" reliquos ; quod iis, qui aetate et scientia praestant, animo 

" aequiore reliqui parent. Magistrum providere oportet 

" quae pecori et pastoribus opus sunt, maxime ad victum ho- 
" minum, et ad medicinam pecudum." Lib. II. c. x. 

* a Varro prescribes as follows — " Tonsas recentes eodem die 
" perungunt vino et oleo : non nemo admixta cera albS, et adipe 

" suillo. Siqua in tonsura" plagam accepit, eum locum 

" oblinunt pice liquida." Lib. II. c. xi. 

Ver. 457—463. 

" Quin etiam ima dolor balantum lapsus ad ossa 
" Cum furit, atque artus depascitur arida febris ; 
" Profuit incensos aestus avertere, et inter 
" Ima ferire pedis salientem sanguine venam : 
" *' Bisaltae quo more solent ; acerque * a Gelonus, 
" Cum fugit in Rhodopen atque in deserta * 8 Getarum, 
" Et lac concretum cum * 4 sanguine potat equino." 

*' Livy, speaking of Macedonia, says: " Pars prima Bisaltas 
" habet fortissimos viros, trans Nessum amnem incolunt, etcirca 
" Strymonem," lib. XLV. c. xxx. — And Pliny, " Amphipolis, 
" liberum oppidum ; gens, Bisaltae," lib. IV. c. x. 

* 2 " Longaque Sarmatici solvens jejunia belli 

" Massagetes, quo fugit, equo, volucresque Geloni." 

' Lucan, lib. III. 282. 

where he adds, " quo fugit," to shew that this was only done 
in time of distress and necessity. 


" Et qui cornipedes in pocula vulnerat audax 

" Massagetes." Claudian, lib. I. 311. in Rufinum. 

" Sarmatarum quoque gentes aluntur cruda farina, equino 
" lacte vel sanguine e cruris venis admixto." Plin. lib. XVIII. 
c. x. 

" Venit et epoto Sarmata pastus equo." 

Martial, De Spectac. Ep. iii. 

" Laetum equino sanguine Concanum." 

Hor. lib. III. Od. iv. 

* 3 Ovid, speaking of the Getae (near neighbours to the place 
of his banishment, but on the north side of the Danube) says, 
that their chief security against the Romans was : 

Arcus plenaeque pharetrae, 

" Quamque licet longis cursibus aptus equus : 
" Quodque sitim didicere diu tolerare, famemque, 
" Quodque sequens nullas hostis habebit aquas." 

De Ponto, lib. I. Epist. iii. 

Which account agrees perfectly well with the description of 
the country by Motraye. 

* 4 See Beauplan's account of people^s eating the blood of 
horses, in his description of Ukraine. — See likewise an account 
of the Nagayans and Tartars eating horses' flesh and drinking 
mares' milk, Ant. Jenkenson's Travels, in Hackluyt's Voyages. 

Solitosque cruentum 

" Lac potare Getas ac pocula tingere venis." 

Sid. Apoll. Carm. VII. de Getis. 

" I TtltH 

"Ai/xali iAi<7yov%s Xsukov yaka Satra riQevlai. Dionys. Perieg. 

And Pliny: " Sarmatarum gentes hac maxime pulte (scil. e 
" milio) aluntur, et cruda etiam farina, equino lacte vel san- 
" guine e cruris venis admisto." Lib. XVIII. c. x. No//.a$es- 
jcaXa/xavot Quvlss gLtio QpsfxiJ.<zTcov ya.Xxy.hs, xal rvpa, xai /j.aXifx 
Utviia, Strabo. And, likewise, Hesiod : 

-VaAZKlotyayoav s'ts yaTav d-ir&pais 

Oikj ly^pvlwv. 

Motraye, in his Travels, tells us, that the people of Akerman 
Tartary, between the Neister and the Danube, formerly the 
Desert of the Getes, and likewise several other herds of the 
Tartars, live still in the same manner. — He likewise informs us 
that the Tartars lead commonly two or three spare horses, to 
transport their plunder, or remount themselves in case that 


those they ride should die. He likewise tells a story that 

one of his guides, after having rambled a long time in one of 
these deserts, let his horse blood, and drank the blood. — He 
likewise tells us that they di-ink their mares' milk fermented, 
Vol. II. c. ii. at the latter end. 

Ver. 470—473. 

" Non tam * creber, agens hiemem, ruit aequore turbo ; 
" Quam multae pecudum pestes: nec singula morbi 
" Corpora corripiunt ; sed tota aestiva repente 
" Spemque gregemque simul, cunctamque ab origine gentem." 

* I take creber in this place to signify quick, and that the 
meaning of the passage is, that a hurricane does not come on 
with more violence, than distempers or plagues incident to 
cattle, which is the reason of the advice just before given, ver. 
468, 469. to kill any sheep on the first suspicion of any con- 
tagious distemper, to prevent its spreading. And this agrees 
with what follows ; " nec singula," etc. 

Ver. 474—477. 

" Tum sciat aerias Alpes, et Norica si quis 
" Castella in * 2 tumulis, et Iapidis arva Timavi, 
" Nunc quoque post tanto videat, desertaque regna 
" Pastorum, et longe saltus lateque vacantes." 

** Isiodorus says : " Virgilius Alpes dicendo aerias verbum 
" expressit a verbo, nam Gallorum lingua Alpes, montes alti 
" vocantur." Origin. Lib. XIV. c. viii. And Servius on the 
tenth Aeneid observes the same. And it is true that, accord- 
ing to this etvmology of the word, other high mountains were 
likewise called Alpes : as the Pyrenean, as appears from Pro- 
copius, lib. I. Rer. Goth. and Silius, lib. II. who ca.lls the 
Alpes and Pyrenean, Geminas Alpeis : likewise the Carpathian 
mountains, to the north of Dacia, are called in the Tabula 
Itineraria, Basternicae Alpes. But others of the antients de- 
rived the name " Alpes ab albo," as we are expressly told by 
Festus : " Alpes a candore nivium dictae sunt, quia perpetuis 
" fere nivibus albescunt : Sabini enim alpum dixere, quod 
" postea Latini album ; unde Alpium nomen." And Strabo, 
Eustathius in Dionys. and Mela, all testify that these moun- 
tains were called indifferently Albia, as weli as Alpiajuga. 

* 2 This word seems to signify properly, not only a hillock, 
as commonly, but such part of a hill or mountain as rose to a 
head, or point, above the body. So, likewise, in the twelfth 
Aeneid, Virgil calls the summit or point of the mountain above 
" Albano, Albanus tumulus;" now, Monte Cavo. The Greeks 
called the Tumuli, ?v6(p«t. See Appian, where he speaks of 


Metulum, in Iapygia, taken by Augustus : the same country 
as Virgil is here speaking of. 

Ver. 478-485. 

" Hic quondam #' morbo caeli miseranda coorta est 
" Tempestas, * 2 totoque autumni incanduit aestu. j^ 

" Et genus omne neci pecudum dedit, omne ferarum, 
" Corrupitque lacus, infecit pabula tabo. 
" Nec via mortis erat * 3 simplex : sed ubi ignea venis 
" Omnibus acta sitis miseros adduxerat artus ; 
" Rursus abundabat fluidus liquor ; omniaque in se 
" Ossa minutatim morbo collapsa trahebat." 

*' Virgil, in this description of the plague amongst the 
cattle, had undoubtedly some view to the celebrated plague of 
Athens, described by Thucydides and Lucretius ; and several 
of his observations and expressions are copied from thence : 
but it is not reasonable to conclude (as some have done) that he 
means the same plague. He places his in a different country ; 
and, besides, the plague of Athens infected both man and 
beast, whereas in this of Virgil, though all other animals are 
infected, man only escapes. Dr. Martyn supposes, from the 
names Chiron and Melampus, that this pestilence happened in 
their time, five hundred years before that of Athens ; but, 
with submission, I think there is no necessity of going so far 

* 2 I think Dr. Trapp gives these words their plain and true 

" With all the fire of Autumn burn'd." 

* 3 I take this to signify, that Death did not appear in one 
single shape. The Poet explains himself by immediately adding 
two different symptoms of the same distemper, which seemed 
directly contrary one to the other. The cattle were parched 
with such heat and drought as to contract their limbs, and 

again were swelled with humours as if dropsical. This ex- 

planation answers exactly to the observations of Dr. Bertrand, 
one of the physicians ot Marseilles in the time of their late 

plague. — His words are as follow: " II seroit difficile de 

" determiner la nature de ce venin a la maniere dont il agit 
" dans le sang : accoutumes a tout raporter a nos idees, et ne 
" connoissant que deux manieres dont le sang peut etre altere 
" et se corrompre, on demandera d'abord si ce venin dissout le 
" sano- ; ou bien, s^il le fige et le coagule. La bizarrerie des 
" symptomes a fait qu'on n'a pu s'assurer precisement ni de 
" l'un ni de 1'autre, et que meme on a cru voir ces deux etats 
" du sang se succeder souvent dans le meme malade ; on n'a 




" pas pu fonder aucun jugement solide sur la vue du sang dans 
" la palette, ayant paru dans les uns d'une consistance natu- 
" relle, dans les autres peu lie et plus liquide, et dans d'autres 
" tout-a fait coiieneux et inflammatoire ; dans les uns tout-a- 
" fait fige, en sorte qu'il n'en sortoit pas une goute par l'ou- 
" verture de la veine ; dans les autres, entierement dissous et 
" fbndu." See Observations sur la maladie contagieuse de Mar- 
seilles, printed at the end of Relation Historique de la Peste 
de Marseilles en 1720. 

Silius, speaking in Hannibal's march of the beasts falling in 
the snow, and leaving their legs behind them, expresses him- 
self by a foolish imitation of Virgil: 

" Nec pestis lapsus simplex." Lib. III. 

Ver. 486—488. 
" Saepe in honore Deum medio stans hostia ad aram, 
" Lanea dum nivea circumdatur * infula vitta, 
" Inter cunctantes cecidit moribunda ministros." 

* A broad woollen swathe fastened to the head of the victim, 
and likewise of the priest, being interlaced with a Vitta or 
smaller fillet : 

" Infula cui sacra redimibat tempora vittaV' Aen. X. 538. 

The ends of the fillets probably hung down.'- See Lucretius,lib. 
I. 87. Lucan, describing the dress of the priestess of Delphi, 
gives different uses to the Infula and Vitta : 

" Torta priores 

" Stringit vitta comas, crinesque in terga solutos 
" Candida Phocaica complectitur infula lauro." 

Lib. V. 142. 

Ver. 531—533. 

" Tempore non alio dicunt regionibus illis 
" Quaesitas ad sacra boves Junonis, et * uris 
" Imparibus ductos alta ad donaria currus. r ' 

* The wild bull, or cow ; _ of which there were probably 
great numbers in the forests of Germany, as there still are seve- 
ral towards the north parts: and called in German, Urox ; 
which, it is not unlikely, was the antient name, softened by the 
Latiu termination into Urus. It is written, as I am informed, 
in high Dutch, Urrocks. 

Ver. 548—550. 
" Nec jam mutari pabula refert, 

" Quaesitaeque nocent artes: cessere magistri, 

" Phillyrides * Chiron, Amythaoniusque Melampus." 


#Columella, enumerating such as were most celebrated in 
their way in several sciences, reckons " in pecoris cultu, doctri- 
nam Chironis ac Melampodis." Pref. 

Ver. 559, 5G0. 
" Nam neque erat coriis usus : nec viscera quisquam 
" Aut #undis abolere potest, aut vincere flamml" 

* The two great purifiers are fire and water. Virgil in his* 
purgatory supposes the spots of souls cleansed, some by fire, and 
some by water : 

" Sub gurgite vasto 

" Infectum eluitur scelus, aut exuritur igni." 

Aen. VI. 742. 


Ver. 1—7. 
" Protinus aerii mellis caelestia dona 
" Exequar: hanc etiam, Maecenas, aspice partem. 
" Admiranda tibi levium * spectacula rerum, 
" Magnanimosque duces, totiusque ordine gentis 
" Mores, et. studia, et populos, et praelia dicam. 
" In tenui labor, at tenuis non gloria: si quem 
" Numina laeva sinunt ; auditque vocatus Apollo." 

* Spectacula hereis very pretty ; this book being, as it were, 
the representation of the affairs of a busy kingdom in minia- 

Ver. 8—12. 

" Principio * l sedes apibus statioque petenda, 
" Quo neque sit ventis aditus (nam pabula venti 
" Ferre domum prohibent), neque oves haedique petulci 
" Floribus insultent ; aut errans bucula campo 
" Decutiat * 2 rorem, et surgentes atterat herbas. 

* l " Sedes apibus collocanda est, procul a tumultu, ac coetu 
" hominum ac pecudum ; nec calido loco, nec frigido. Si 
" villae situs ita competit, non est dubitandum, quin aedificio 
" junctum apiarium raaceria circumdemus; sed in ea parte, 

K 2 


" quae tetrls latrinae sterquiliniique et balinei libera est odo- 
" ribus." Col. lib. IX. c. v. 

* 2 Columella affirms from Celsus " Ex floribus ceras 

" fieri: ex matutino rore, mella." Lib. IX. c. xiv. 

Ver. 13—17. 
" Absint et picti *' squalentia terga * 2 lacerti 
" Pinguibus a stabulis, * 3 meropesque aliaeque volucres, 
" Et manibus Procne pectus signata cruentis. 
" Omnia nam late vastant, ipsasque volantes 
" Ore ferunt, dulcem nidis immitibus escam." 

*' Both hei*e, and ver. 91, Squalens is used for glittering. 

* 2 Columella directs; " Debebit suggestus lapideus dili- 
" genter opere tectorio levigari ; ita ne ascensus lacertis, aut 
" anguibus, aliisve noxiis animalibus praebeatur." Lib. IX. 
c. vii. 

* 3 Virgil seems to mean martins and such birds should be 
destroyed, as usually build under theroofs of houses.porticoes, 
etc. because, as appears from Varro, Columella, etc. their 
hives used commonly to be placed in niches made in the walls 
of their villas, or under porticoes. " Quod ad locum pertinet, 
" hoc genus potissimum eligendum juxta villam: non quo non 
" in villae porticu quoque quidam (quo tutius essent) alvearia 
" collocarint." Var. lib. III. c. xvi. And a little before, in 
the same chapter: " Alnos ita collocant in mutulis parietis, ut 

" ue agitentur, neve inter se contingant." Columella, to the 

same purpose, in the beginning of the ninth book, " Apibus da- 
" batur sedes adhuc nostra memoria, vel ipsis villae parietibus 

" excisis, vel in protectis porticibus ac pomariis." In the 

fourth chapter of the same book, treating De pastionibus apum, 
he says ; " Pabulationes sint secretissimae, et, ut noster praecepit 
" Maro, viduae pecudibus, aprico, et minime procelloso caeli 
" statu." 

Ver. 18—24. 

" At *' liquidi fontes, et stagna virentia musco 
" Adsint, et tenuis fugiens per gramina rivus; 
" * 2 Palmaque vestibulum, aut ingens oleaster inumbret ; 
" Ut, cum prima novi ducent examina reges 
" Vere * 3 suo, ludetque favis emissa juventus; 
" Vicina invitet decedere ripacalori, 
" Obviaque hospitiis teneat frondentibus arbos." 

* l " Potio apibus aqua liquida, unde bibant, esse oportet, 
" eamque propinquam, quae praeterfluit, aut in aliquem locum 
" influat, ita ut ne altitudine ascendat duo aut tres digitos: in 
" qua aqua, jaceant testae aut lapilli, ita ut extent paulum ; 
" ubi assidere et bibere possint. In qua diligenter habenda 


c< cura, ut aqua sit pura, quod ad mellificium bonum vehementer 
" prodest." Var. lib. III. c. xvi. 

* s Columella givesno instructions on thishead; but he quotes 
this and the four following verses, as a plain and sufficient 
direction, without further authority. Lib. IX. c. v. 

* 3 Suo is here very expressive : for the time here meant by 
t.he Poet is not properly that season or quarter of the year 
allotted to the Spring, as is known to every body; for the 
Spriug ended about the sixth of the Ides of May ; and, as Co- 
lumella obscrves: " Cum fit Vergiliarum exortus circa v. id. 
" Maias, incipiunt examina viribus et numero augeri." Lib. IX. 

c. xiv. Therefore it is here emphatically their Spring. — As 

the Spring of the year is the season, when every thing begins 
to shoot, so the time, when the young begin to appear, is 
metaphorically their Spring : or it may be because fiowers, 
the ornament of the Spring, are their life. 

Ver. 2.5—32. 

" In medium, seu stabit iners, seu profluet humor, 
" Tranversas salices et grandia conjice saxa : 
" *' Pontibus ut crebris possint consistere, et alas 
" Pandere ad aestivum solem ; si forte morantes 
" Sparserit, aut praeceps Neptuno immerserit Eurus. 
" Haec * 2 circum casiae virides, et olentia late 
" Serpylla, et graviter spirantis copia thymbrae 
" Floreat : irriguumque bibant violaria fontem." 

Columella gives the following direction. " Perennis aqua, 
" si est facultas, inducatur, velextructo canali manu detur ; sine 
*' qua, neque favi, neque mella, nec pulli denique figurari 
" queunt. Sive igitur praeterfluens unda, vel putealis canali- 
" bus immissa fuerit, virgis ac lapidibus aggeretur apum 
" causa." And then concludes with citing the three following 
verses : 

" Pontibus ut crebris," etc. Lib. IX. c. viii. (See ver. 18.) 

* 2 Columella, having said, " Judaeam et Arabiam pretiosis 
" odoribus illustrem haberi ;" adds, " sed nec nostram civita- 
" tem praedictis egere stirpibus : quippe cum pluribus locis 
" urbis, jam casiam frondentem conspicimus," etc. Lib. III. c. 
viii. Quaer. If Virgil's Casia? 

* 3 Columella, having reckoned up a great number of shrubs, 
flowers and trees agreeable to bees, concludes ; " Verum ex 
" cunctis quae proposui, quaeque omisi temporis compendia se- 
" quens (nam inexputabilis erat numerus) saporis praecipui 
" mella reddit thymus. Tliymo deinde proxima thvmbra, ser- 
" pyllumque, etoriganum." Lib. IX. c. iv. 

134 on the georgics. 

Ver. 33—41. 

" Ipsa autem, seu corticibus tibi suta cavatis, 
" Seu lento fuerint * x alvearia vimine texta, 
" Angustos habeant ** aditus ; nam frigore mella 
" Cogit hiems, eademque calor liquefacta remittit: 
" Utraque vis apibus pariter metuenda : neque illae 
" Nequicquam in tectis certatim tenuia cera 
" Spiramenta * 3 linunt, fucoque et floribus oras 
" Explent : collectumque haec ipsa ad munera gluten, 
" Et visco et Phrygiae servant pice lentius Idae." 

** " Alvearia fabricanda sunt pro conditione regionis ; sive 
" illa ferax est suberis, haud dubitanter utilissimas alvos facie- 
" mus ex corticibus, quia nec hieme rigent, nec candent aestate. 
" Si suber non aderit, opere textorio salicibus connectuntur." 
Col. lib. IX. c. vi. 

** " Foramina, quibus exitusaut introitus datur, angustissima 
" esse debent, ut quam minimum frigoris admittant: eaque satis 
" est ita forari, ne possint capere plus unius apis incrementum. 
" Sic nec venenatus stellio, nec obscenum scarabaei vel papili- 
" onis genus, lucifugaeque blattae, ut ait Maro, per laxiora 
" spatia januae favos populantur. Atque utilissimum est pro 
" frequentia domicilii duos vel tres aditus in eodem operculo 
" distantes inter se fieri contra fallaciam lacerti, qui velut custos 
" vestibuli prodeuntibus inhians apibus affert exitium, eaeque 
" pauciores intereunt, cum licet vitare pestis obsidia per aliud 
" vadentibus effugium." Col. lib. IX. c. vii. 

* 3 Extra ostium alvei obturant omnia, qua venit, inter favos 
!' spiritus, quam sfi9xy.r,v appellant Graeci." Var. lib. III. c. 
xvi. And in the same chapter afterwards ; " Erithacen vocant, 
" quo favos extremos inter se conglutinant," etc. 

Vee. 45, 46. 

" Tu tamen et *' levi rimosa cubilia limo 
" Unge * 2 fovens circum, et raras * 3 superinjice frondes." 

*' This epithet levi is very significant. Varro directs, 
" Vitiles alvos fimo bubulo oblinere intus, et extra ; ne apes 
" asperitate absterreantur. 1 ' Lib. III. c. xvi. 

* 3 " Fovens circum," prettily expresses the plasterer's man- 

ner of working. As for the rest, Columella directs thus : 

" Ora cavearum, quae praebent apibus vestibula, proniora sint 
" quam terga ; ut ne influant imbres, et si forte tamen ingressi 
" fuerint, non immorentur, sed per aditum effluant: propter 
" quod convenit alvearia porticibus supermuniri ; sin aliter, 
" luto Punico frondibus illinitis adumbrari ; quod tegmen cum 
" frigora et pluvias, tum aestus arcet." Lib. IX. c. vii. 


* 3 " Quamvis porticu protecta vasa, nihilominus congestu 
« culmorum et frondium supertegemus ; quantumque res pati- 
M etur, a frigore et tempestatibus muniemus." Cap. xiv. 

Ver. 47—50. 

•* Neu propius tectis #' taxum sine ; neve rubentes 
" Ure foco cancros : altae neu crecle * 2 paludi : 
" Aut ubi odor coeni gravis, aut ubi concava pulsu 
" Saxa sonant, vocisque offensa resultat * 3 imago. r> 

* J Columella, speaking of forest trees fit to be planted near 
apiaries, says ; " Taxi repudiantur." Lib. IX. c. iv. 

" Gravis et tetri odoris non solum virentia, sed et quaelibet 
" res prohibeantur; sicuti cancrinidor, cum est ignibus adustus, 
" aut odor palustris coeni : nec minus vitentur cavae rupes, aut 
" valles argutae ; quas Graeci f,-/Hs vocant." Ibid. c. v. 

* 2 " Sequuntur omnia pura ; itaque nulla harum assidit in 
" loco inquinato, aut eo qui male oleat; neque etiam in eo qui 
" bona olet unguenta ; itaque liis unctus qui accessit, pungunt." 
Var. lib. III. c. xvi. 

* 3 Varro makes one of his interlocutors give the following 
instructions about choosing the place for an apiary : " Primum, 
" secundum villam ; potissimum ubi non resonent imagines ; hic 
" enim sonus harum fugae causa existimatur esse." 

Ver. 51—54. 

" Quod superest, ubi pulsam hiemem sol aureus egit 
" Sub terras, caelumque aestiva luce reclusit: 
" * Illae continuo saltus sylvasque peragrant, 
" Purpureosque metunt flores, et fiumina libant 
" Summa leves." 

* This observation, with what follows, ver. 61, 

Aquas dulces, et frondea semper 

" Tecta petunt," etc. 

is confirmed by several passages in Columella ; but particularly, 
lib. IX. c. viii. which directs, " quemadmodum sylvestria ex- 
" amina capiantur ;" where he says : " Ubicunque saltus sunt 
" idonei, mellifici : nihil antiquius quam apes, quibus utantur, 
" vicinos eligunt fontes : eos itaque convenit plerumque ab hora 
" secunda obsideri, specularique quae turba sit aquantium. 
" Nam si paucae admodum circumvolant (nisi tamen complura 
" capita rivorum diductas faciunt rariores), intelligenda est 
" earum penuria, propter quam locum quoque non esse melli- 
" ficum suspicabimur. At si commeant frequentes, spem quoque 

" aucupandi examina majorem faciunt." Again, afterwards, 

in the same chapter:— " Sunt qui per initia veris apiastrum, 


" atque (ut ille vates ait) trita meliphylla, et cerinthae ignobile 
" gramen, aliasque colligant similes herbas, quibus id genus 
" animalium delectatur ; et ita alvos perfricent, ut odor et 
" succus vasi inhaereat ; quae deinde mundata exiguo melle re- 
" spergant, et per nemora non longe a fontibus disponant ; 
" eaque cum repleta sunt examinibus, domum referant." 

Ver. 58—64. 

" Hinc ubi jam ** emissum caveis ad sidera caeli 
" Nare per aestatem liquidam suspexeris agmen, 
" Obscuramque trahi vento mirabere nubem ; 
" Contemplator : aquas dulces et frondea semper 
" Tecta petunt: huc tu jussos asperge sapores, 
" Trita meliphylla, et cerinthae ignobile gramen : 
" Tinnitusque cie, et Matris quate * cymbala circum." 

** " Quia examen fugiens, et sedem novam quaerens, se levat 
" sublimius," as Columella observes, lib. IX. c. xii. and as it is 
confirmed by common observation. 

* 2 " Cum causa Musarum esse dicuntur volucres, quod et 
" siquando displicatae sunt, cymbalis et plausibus numero redu- 
" cunt in locum unum." Var. lib. III. c. xvi. 

Ver. 65, 66. 

" Ipsae ^ 1 consident medicatis sedibus: ipsae 
" Intima * 2 more suo sese in cunabula condent." 

^ 1 Varro directs thus, when the bees are observed to swarm : — 
" Cum a mellario id fecisse animadvei'sae, jaciundo in eas pul- 
" verem, et circumtinniendo aere, perterritas quo voluerit per- 
" ducet. Non longe inde oblinunt erithace atque apiastro, 
" caeterisque rebus quibus delectantur. Ubi considerunt, 
" afferunt, alvum prope eisdem illiciis illitam intus: et prope 
" apposita, fumo leni circumeundo cogunt eas intrare." Varr. 
lib. III. c. xvi. 

* 3 Quaer. If this (more suo) does not insinuate an instruc- 
tion ; not to touch or force bees in their hiving, but to let them 
go on their own way ? 

Ver. 67—72. 

" Sin autem ad pugnam exierint (nam saepe duobus 
" Regibus incessit magno discordia motu) 
" Continuoque animus vulgi, et * trepidantia bello 
" Corda licet longe praesciscere : namque morantes 
" Martius ille * 2 aeris rauci canor increpat, et vox 
" Auditur fractos sonitus imitata tubarum." 

^ 1 Columella says ; " Fere ante triduum, quam eruptionem 



" facturae sint, velut militaria signa moventium tumultus ac 
" murmur exoritur; ex quo, ut verissime dicit Virgilius, 

" Corda licet," etc- 

Lib. IX. c. ix. 

** " Duces conficiunt quaedamad vocemut imitatione tubae: 
" tum id faciunt, cum inter se signa pacis et belli habeaut." 
Var. lib. III. c. xvi. 

Ver. 86—90. 

" Hi motus animorum, atque haec certamina tanta, 
" Pulveris exigui fc 1 jactu compressa quiescent. 
" Verum ubi ductores acie revocaveris ambos : 
" * 2 Deterior qui visus ; eum, ne prodigus obsit, 
" Dede neci : melior vacua sine regnet in aula." 

*' This is confirmed by Columella, who says; " Pugna qui- 
" dem vel unius examinis inter se dissidentis, vel duorum discor- 
" dantium, facile compescitur : nam, ut idem Virgilius ait, 

" Pulveris exigui jactu compressa quiescit ; 

" aut mulso, passove, aut alio quovis liquore simili resperso ; 
" videlicet familiari dulcedine saevientium iras mitigante." 
Lib. IX. c. ix. 

Varro directs the use of this stratagem, to make bees hive, 
when swarming (see ver. 65. note); but Virgil employs it bet- 
ter here : after having given a lofty description of their engage- 
ment, the quelling them in so easy a manner makes a pretty 

*- 2 Virgil afterwards describes the two sorts of bees ; 

" Nam duo sunt genera," etc. 

Varro directs, " Animadvertat mellarius, ne reguli plures exis- 
" tant; inutiles enim fiunt propter seditiones. Et, ut quidam 
" dicunt, tria genera ciim sint ducum in apibus, niger, ruber, 
" varius; ut Menecrates scribit, duo, niger et varius; expediat 
" mellario, cum duo sint eadem alvo, interficere nigrum," etc. 
And again; " De reliquis apibus optima est parva, varia, 
** rotunda. Fur, qui vocatur ab aliis fucus, alter est lato 
" ventre." Lib. III. c. xvi. 

Ver. 95—99. 

" Ut binae regum facies, ita corpora gentis : 
" Namque aliae turpes horrent, * ceu pulvere ab alto 
" Cum venit, et terram sicco spuit ore viator 
" Aridus: elucent aliae, et fulgore coruscant, 
" Ardentes auro, et paribus lita corpora guttis." 


* Varro remarks this of bees looking " pulverulentae, et 
" horridae," when they are sick. — " Minus valentium signa, si 
" sunt pilosae et horridae, ut pulverulentae, nisi opificii eas 
" urget tempus. Tum enim propter laborem asperantur ac 
" macescunt." Lfb. III. c. xvi. 

Ver. 103—108. 

" Cum incerta volant caeloque examina ludunt, 
" Contemnuntque favos, et frigida tecta relinquunt, 
" Instabiles animos ludo prohibebis inani. 
" Nec magnus prohibere labor : tu regibus * alas 
" Eripe : non illis quisquam cunctantibus altum 
" Ire iter, aut castris audebit vellere signa." 

* Columella, having mentioned the several sorts of bees de- 
scribed by Aristotle, adds; " Ejus auctoritatem sequens Virgi- 
" liusmaxime probat parvulas, oblongas, leves, nitidas, ardentes 
" auro, et paribus lita corpora guttis." Lib. IX. c. iii. And 
again, chapter the tenth, which is entitled, " Quae sit formaregis 
" apum," he contents himself with quoting Virgil's description 
with very little variation. — And at the end of that chapter he 
adds ; " Rex tamen et ipse spoliandus est alis, ubi saepius cum 
" examine suo conatur, eruptione facta, profugere: nam velut 
" quadam compede retinebimus erronem ducem detractis alis," 
etc. which confirms Virgil's precept :- -" regibus alas Eripe." 

Ver. 112-115. 

" Ipse thymum * pinosque ferens de montibus altis, 
" Tecta serat late circum, cui talia curae : 
" Ipse labore manum duro tex'at, ipse feraces 
" Figat humo plantas, et amicos irriget imbres." 

-* By joining these two together, Virgil plainly shews that he 
means wild thyme. — In his instructions what should be planted 
near the hives, and likewise in his description of the garden of 
the Senex Corycius, this plant is not mentioned, though fre- 
quentlv in other places ; being the plant which bees chiefly feed 
on, and are most fond of.< — " Ut cytisum aptissimum ad sanita- 
" tem apium, sic ad mellificium thymum. Propter quod Sicu- 
" lum mel fert palmam, quod ibi thymum bonum et frequens 
" est. Itaque quidam thymum contundunt in pila, et diluunt 
" in aqua tepida; eo conspergunt omnia seminaria consita apium 
" causa." Var. lib. III. c. xvi. 

Ver. 120—124, 
" Quoque modo potis gauderent intyba rivis, 
" Et virides apio * l ripae, tortusque per herbam 


" Cresceret in ventrem, cueumis : nec sera comantem 
" Narcissum, aut flexi tacuissem vimen * 2 acanthi, 
" Pallentesque hederas, et amantes litora myrtos." 

*' Colnmella says ; " Apium praecipue aqua laetatur, et ideo 
secundum fontem commodissime ponitur." Lib. II. c. iii. 
** Pliny says of the Acanthos, " Est topiaria et urbana herba, 
elato longoque folio, crepidines marginum assurgentiumque 
pulvinorum toros vestiens. Duo genera ejus sunt, aculeatum 
et crispum, quod brevius ; alterum, leve ; quod aliqui 
Paederota vocant, alii Melamphyllum." Lib. XXII. c. xxii. 

Ver. 125—132. 
" Sub Oebaliae memini me turribus altis, 

" Qua niger humectat flaventia culta *' Galesus, 

" Corycium vidisse senem : cui pauca * 2 relicti 

" Jugera ruris erant ; nec fertilis illa juvencis, 

" Nec pecori opportuna seges, nec commoda Baccho. 

" Hic rarum tamen in dumis olus, albaque circum 

" Lilia verbenasque premens, vescumque papaver, 

" Regum aequabat opes animis." 

** Now called, Galese. Livy says, that this river is five 
miles from Tarento. " Hannibal Tarenti reliquit modicum 
" praesidium. Ipse profectus cum caeteris copiis ad Galesum 
" flumen (quinque millia ab urbe abest) posuit castra." Lib. 
XXV. c. xi. From Livy's whole account of Hannibal's taking 
Tarento, it is very manifest, that his camp was on the east side 
of the town, or towards Gallipoli ; for as the entrance of the 
port, or Mare Piccolo, was commanded by the castle, which 
was still maintained against him, consequently he Could enter 
Tarento by land no other way than by going quite round the 
Mare Piccolo, and his camp being within five miles of the town 
must of course be of the same side too : and therefore the Gale- 
sus must empty itself either into the Mare Piccolo on that side,' 
or into the great sea between Tarento and Gallipoli. 

This river, being in a country much inhabited by Grecians, 
took its name, as one may imagine from YdXx, Lac, being a 
milky stream ; in allusion to which Martial calls it, Albus 
Galesus : 

" Albi quae superas oves Galesi." 

But Virgil, considering the river in another view, as much 
shaded by trees on its banks, calls it Niger, by way of con- 
trast to the etymology of its name. 

The epithet Flaventia, given to Culta, adds a new beauty to 
the picture. 



* 2 The " Spineta Galesi," mentioned by Propertius, are 
agreeable to VirgiPs " relicti jugera ruris;" and his, " in dumis." 
It may perhaps be objected, that the " flaventia culta," men- 
tioned by Virgil near the Galesus, and the description he gives 
of the garden of the Corycius senex, which he calls " relictum 
" rus," and " in dumis," and which he places likewise near the 
Galesus, don't very well agree : but whoever sees this country 
must be convinced of the justness of the Poet's description ; and 
will flnd the same opposite variety in the face of the whole eoun- 
try, as in the Poet ; viz. a mixture of wild rough ground, and 
very rich land. And Strabo, in his description of this country, 
gives us the like representation of it : T«v lacauyiuy %uqx tsolqcl- 
^o^wr e?lv dfsia, &c. Lib. VI. 

Relicti, not ploughed, or cultivated. Columella uses this 
word in the same sense, where he opposes Relictum to Tracta- 
tum : " Nullum deterius habetur terreni genus quam quod est 
" siccum, pariter et densum et macrum ; quia cum difficulter 
" tractetur, tum ne tractatum quidem gratiam refert, nec re- 
" lictum (i. e. non tractatum, non cultum) pratis vel pascuis 
" abunde sufficit." Lib. II. c.ii. 

Ver. 135—141. 
" Cum tristis hiems etiam nunc frigore saxa 

" Rumperet, et glacie cursus frenaret aquarum ; 

" Ille comam mollis jam tum *' tondebat acanthi, 

" Aestatem increpitans seram, Zephyrosque morantes. 

" * 2 Ergo apibus foetis idem atque examine multo 

" Primus abundare, et spumantia cogere pressis 

" Mella favis : illi * a tiliae, atque uberrima pinus." 

*' The Romansused to trim their plants as we do now. Pliny 
speaks of the " topiario opere buxus tonsilis," lib. XVI. c. xvi. 
andofthe " tonsilis cupressus," c. xxxiii. 

. * 2 Here the Poet shews that he had not wandered so far out 
of the way, but that he kept his subject still in view. 

Horace celebrates the honey of Tarentum, particularly on the 
banks of Galesus : 

" Ille terrarum mihi praeter omnes 
" Angulus ridet ; ubi non Hymetto 
" Mella decedunt." * Lib. II. Od. vi. 

* 3 Notwithstanding Virgil mentions the Tilia in a garden 
abounding with bees, Columella says, " Tiliae solae ex omnibus 
" sunt nocentes, Taxi repudiantur," lib. IX. c. iv. Again, 
Virgil says of his bees ; " Pascuntur — pinguem tiliam," 
ver. 183, 


Ver. 144—14*. 
" Ille etiam seras in versum ** distulit ulmos, 
" Eduramque pirum, et spinos jam pruna ferentes, 
" Jamque ministrantem platanum potantibus umbras. 
" Verum haec ipse equidem, spatiis exclusus iniquis, 
" Praetereo, atque * aliis jjost commemoranda relinquo." 

*' This word Distulit expresses something more than bare 
transplanting, as it is commonly translated : It implies the dis- 
tance which was to be observed in planting tall elms. 

* 2 This verse gave occasion to Columella to write his tenth 
book in verse, though all the rest of his works were in prose; as 
he testifies himself, Praef. in lib. X. " CuJtus hortorum sicut 
" institueram prosa oratione prioribus subnecteretur exordiis, 
" nisi propositum meum expugnasset frequens postulatio tua, 
*' Silvine ; quae pervicit, ut poeticis numeris explerem Georgici 
" carminis omissas partes, quas tamen et ipse Virgilius signifi- 
" caverat posteris post se memoranda relinquere. Neque enim 
" aliter istud nobis fuerat audendum, quam ex voluntate vatis 
" maxime venerandi. Cujus quasi numine instigante, aggressi 
" sumus tenuem admodum et pene viduatam corpore mate- 

" riam." And in the beginning of his poem, " Hortorum 

*' quoque te," etc, where observe he uses, " Spatiis exclusus 
•' iniquis ;" not Disclusus. 

Ver. 149—152. 

" Nunc age, naturas apibus quas * Jupiter ipse 
" Addidit, expediam : pro qua mercede, canoros 
" Curetum sonitus crepitantiaque aera secutae, 
" Dictaeo caeli 1'egem pavere sub antro." 

* Columella observes, that Virgil has only modestly hinted 
at one of the fables of the origin of bees. And having men- 
tioned several fabulous traditions from other authors, parti- 
cularly, " Jovis extitisse nutrices, easque pabula munere Dei 
" sortitas, quibus ipsae parvum educaverant alumnum," he 
adds : " Ista quamvis non dedeceant poetam, summatim tamen, 
" et uno tantummodo versiculo leviter attigit Virgilius, cum 
" sic ait: 

" Dictaeo caeli regem pavere sub antro." 

Perhaps the reason why the Poet touched so slightly on this 
fable was, because he had a long fable to tell at the latter end 
cf tliis book ; he knew how, " servare modum." 
Ver. 160—162. 

" Pars intra septa domorum 

" *' Narcissi lacrymam, et lentum de cortice gluten, 
" Prima favis ponunt fundamina."- 


* l Columella, amongst the flowers proper for bees, mentions 
Gladiolum Narcissi ; and for the forest trees he says : " Sylves- 
" trium commodissime faciunt glandifera robora, quin etiam 
" terebinthus, nec dissimilis huic lentiscus, et odorata cedrus." 
Lib. IX. c. iv. — The " Lentum de cortice gluten" means gum, 
or the like, sweating out of trees. 

Ver. ]65— 169. 

" Sunt quibus ad portas cecidit custodia sorti : 
" Inque vicem speculantur aquas et nubila caeli, 
" Aut onera accipiunt venientum, aut agmine facto 
" Ignavum * fucos pecus a praesepibus arcent. 
" Fervet opus, redolentque thymo fragrantia mella." 

* Columella gives the following account of the Fucus : " Est 
" genus amplioris incrementi, simillimum apis, et, ut ait Vir- 
" gilius, ignavum pecus, et sine industria favis assidens. Nam 
" neque alimenta congerit, et ab aliis invecta consumit. Ve- 
" runtamen ad procreationem sobolis conferre aliquid hi fuci 
" videntur insidentes seminibus, quibus apes figurantur : itaque 
" ad fovendam et educandam novam prolem familiarius admit- 
" tuntur. Exclusis deinde pullis, extra tecta proturbantur ; 
" et, ut idem ait, a praesepibus arcent." Lib. IX. c. xv. See 
ver. 244. 

Ver. 180—183. 

" Fessae multa referunt se nocte minores, 

" Crura thymo plenae : pascuntur et *' arbuta passim, 
" Et glaucas salices, casiamque crocumque rubentem, 
" Et pinguem tiliam, et * 2 ferrugineos hyacinthos." 

*' " Arbores sunt probatissimae, Amygdalae, et Persici, at- 
" que Pyri ; denique pomiferarum pleraeque, ne singulis immo- 
" rer." Col. lib. IX. c. iv. In the same chapter afterwards : 
" Nec minus caelestis numinis Hyacinthus, Corycius, item, Si- 
" culusque bulbus croci deponitur ; qui coloret, odoretque 
" mella." 

* 2 Columella names — " Vel niveos, vel caeruleos hyacinthos, 
" Narcissique comas." In the same poem he calls hyacinthos, 

Ver. 190, 191. 

" Ubi jam thalamis se composuere, siletur 

" In noctem, fessosque sopor * suus occupat artus." 

* Acquii*ed by their own labour. 
Ver. 197—202. 
" Tllum adeo placuisse apibus mirabere morem, 
" Quod ** nec concubitu indulgent, nec corpora segnes 


" In venerem solvunt, aut foetus nixibus edunt. 
" Veriim ipsae e foliis natos et suavibus herbis 
" Ore legunt : ipsae * 2 regem, parvosque Quirites 
11 Sufficiunt : aulasque et cerea regna refingunt." 

*' Columella mentions this as a dispute among the naturalists: 
" Utrum examina, tanquam caetera videmus animalia, concu- 
■' bitu sobolem procreent, an haeredem generis sui floribus eli- 

" gant ; quod affirmat noster Maro." Lib. IX. c. vii. Chap- 

ter the xivth, he remarks, that bees are so great enemies to 
venery, that he lays down this rule : " Maxime custodiendum 
11 est curatori, qui apes nutrit, cum alvos tractare debebit, uti 
" pridie castus sit ab rebus venereis." 

* fi As the king is of a larger size than the rest of the bees, so 
it was believed among the antients that the cell where the royal 
race was formed was distinct from the rest, and of a peculiar 
make, which Virgil seems to allude to. Columella has the fol- 
lowing passage on this head : " Cera, iri qua regii generis proles 
" animatur facilis conspectu est, quoniam fere in ipso fine cera- 
" rum velut papilla uberis apparet eminentior, et laxioris fistu- 
" lae quam sint reliqua foramina, quibus pojDularis notae pulli 
" detinentur," etc. Lib. IX. c. xi. 

Ver. 215—218. 

" Ille operum custos, illum admirantur, et omnes 
" Circumstant fremitu denso, stipantque frequentes, 
" Et saepe * attollunt humeris, et corpora bello 
" Objectant, pulchramque petunt per vulnera mortem," 

* " Regem suum sequuntur quocunque it ; et fessum sub- 
" levant, et si nequit volare, succollant ; quod eum servare 
" volunt." Var. lib. III. c. xvi. " Apes ut hominumcivitates, 
" quod hic est et rex, et imperium, et societas." ibid. 

Ver. 219—222. 

" His quidam signis, atque haec exempla secuti 
" Esse apibus partem * divinae mentis, et haustus 
" Aethereos dixere: Deum namque ire per omnes 
" Terrasque, tractusque maris, caelumque profundum." 

* See Dr. Trapp's excellent dissertation on Virgil's philoso- 
phy, in his note on ver. 933 of his translation of the Aeneid, 
book Vlth. 

Ver. 231—235. 

" ** Bis gravidos cogunt foetus * 2 , duo tempora messis, 

" Taygete simul os terris ostendit honestum 

" * Pleias, et Oceani spretos pede reppulit amnes : 


" Aut eadem sidus fugiens ubi Piscis aquosi, 
" Tristior hibernas caelo descendit in undas." 

** See Sir G. Wheeler's account of the manner of ordering 
bees at mount Hymettus near Athens, with the time of taking 
the honey, p. 412. 

* 2 " Eximendorum favorum primum putant esse tempus 
" Vergiliarnm exortu : Secundum, aestate exacta ; antequam 
" totus exoriatur Arcturus : Tertium, post Vergiliarum occa- 
" sum. Et ita, si foecunda sit alvus, ut ne plus tertia pars exi- 
" matur mellis, reliquum hiemationi relinquatur : si verd 
" alvus non sit fertilis, ubiquideximatur, exemptio cum est ma- 
" jor, neque universam, neque palam facere oportet, ne defici- 
" ant animum." Var. lib. III. c. xvi. Who tells us expressly, 
that the Vergiliarum exortus is vi idus Mai. Vergiliarum 
occasus, vi id. Novemb. lib. I. c. xxx. et xxxiv. — If Columella 
differs from Varro and Virgil in some respects as to the seasons 
of taking the honey from the hives, yet he says twice expressly ; 
" Mox vere transacto sequitur mellis vindemia, propter quam 
" totius anni labor exercetur :" And presently afterwards he 
gives his reasons for difference of time : " Adapertas alvos in- 
" spicies, ut sive semipleni favi sint, differantur ; sive jam liquore 
" completi, et superpositis ceris tanquam operculis obliti deme- 
" tantur." Lib. IX. c. xv. And again, in the same chapter : 
" Priore messe, dum adhuc rura pastionibus abundant, quinta 
" pars favorum ; posteriore, cum jam metuitur hiems, tertia 
" relinquenda est. Atque hic tamen modus non est in omnibus 
" regionibus certus, quoniam pro multitudine florum etubertate 
" pabuli apibus consulendum est." 

* Virgil, in speaking of the rising of the Pleiades, speaks of 
them in the singular number ; and that personally. It is pro- 
bable, that on some of the antient globes this was a distinct 
constellation from Taurus ; and might be sometimes represented 
by one of the Sisters only ; that named by Virgil. Aratus and 
Eratosthenes both speak of it [the Pleiades] as distinct from 
Taurus ; and the latter calls it YlXsicts, and not YlXsicc^s^. 

-f- The moderns fling the Pleiades into Taurus : in the antient 
spheres, it was a constellation by itself ; and that probably of 
the Sister, who represented all the rest. 

Aratus describes it as a distinct constellation near Perseus's 
left knee (ver. 254.), and speaks of Taurus so far before 
(ver. 167.), that there are eight constellations in the interval. 
Accovdingly Taurus makes the 14th article in Eratosthenes, and 
the Pleiades the 23d. 

Manilius indeed places them, with the Hyades, in Taurus 
(I. 371.): but this is not the only thing that would make one 
think his work less antient, than it is pretended to be. 


See the Farnese globe in Polymetis, pl. xxxiv. Perhaps the 
hinder parts of Taurus were cut off in the old globes, on pur- 
pose to make room for this eonstellation. Eratosthenes, speak- 
mg of its place there, has these words : 'EttI tt,s aito%ii.T\s rou 
lxupH, t't)s KaXH/xivns '¥d%<EOJS, YlXsiois Ifj. Aiynaiv sfvai ruv rou 
ArXavlos hufxtipuv' <>io x.zl'E7r1d i >spov xaXsirai' ouy£ h^wvlai £e ui £', 
aXX' a\ s"'. In art. riXsids. 

Eratosthenes always speaks of her in the singular number ; 
which, compared with this passage, may sufficiently confirm 
that it was the figure of one of the Sisters only, with the Seven 
Stars represented on it; whence it was called^E^a^ov. 

Ver. 241—250. 

" * l Suffire thymo, cerasque recidere inanes 

" Quis dubitet? nam saepe favos ignotus adedit 

" Stellio, lucifugis congesta cubilia blattis : 

" Immunisque * 2 sedens aliena ad pabula fucus, 

" Aut asper * 3 crabro imparibus se immiscuit armis ; 

" Aut dirum tineae genus, aut invisae Minervae 

" In foribus laxos suspendit aranea casses. 

" Quo magis exhaustae fuerint ; hoc * 4 acrius omnes 

" Incumbent generis lapsi sarcire ruinas, 

" Complebuntque foros, et floribus horrea texent." 

^ 1 Columella speaks of frequent f umigations proper for bees ; 
and directs, " ut ab ortu Caniculae usque in Autumni aequi- 
" noctium decimo quoque die alvi aperiendae sint et fumigandae ; 
" quod cum sit molestum examinibus, saluberrimum tamen esse 
" convenit." Lib. IX. c. xiv. 

* 2 Sedens, properly used, being a lazy posture. 

* 3 Hornet ; called now in Italian, Calabrone. 

** Columella, speaking of the Fuci, says: " Ego Magoni 
" consentiens non in totum exterminari fucos oportere censeo, 
" ne apes inertia laborent: Quae, cum fuci aliquam partem 
" cibariorum absumunt, sarciendo damna fiunt agiliores." 
Lib. IX. c. xv. 

Ver. 251—259. 

" Si vero (quoniam *' casus apibus quoque nostros 
" Vita tulit) tristi languebunt corpora morbo, 
" Quod jam non dubiis poteris cognoscere signis : 
" Continuo est * 2 aegris alius color : horrida vultum 
" Deformat macies : tum corpora luce carentum 
" Exportant tectis, et tristia funera ducunt: 
" Aut illae pedibus connexae ad limina pendent, 
" Aut intus clausis cunctantur in aedibus omnes: 
" Ignavaeque fame, et contracto frigore pigrae." 



*' As the Poet has carried on a comparison between bees 
and us through all parts of life alrnost, so he gives them our 
diseases too. 

* 2 Columella, in his chapter De morbis apum, has copied 
Virgil, and given us almost a literal translation: " Ille morbus 
" maxime est conspicuus, qui horridas contractasque carpit, 
" cum frequenter aliae mortuarum corpora domiciliis suis 
" efferunt ; aliae intra tecta, ut in publico luctu, moesto silentio 
" torpent. Id cum accidit arundineis infusi canalibus offeruntur 
" cibi, maxime decocti mellis, et cum Galla vel arida rosa 
" detriti. Galbanum etiam, ut ejus odore medicentur, incendi 
" convenit. Passoque et defruto vetere fessas sustinere. 
" Optime tamen facit amelli radix, cujus est frutex luteus, pur- 
" pureus flos: Ea cum vetere Amineo vino decocta exprimitur, 
" et ita liquatus ejus succus datur." Lib. IX. c. xiii. 

Ver. 271. 

V Est etiam flos in pratis, cui nomen * amello 
" Fecere agricolae." 

# Quaer. if the Aster Atticus ? Columella calls it Frutex, 
lib. IX. c. iv. whex-e, treating " de pastionibus apum," after 
having enumerated several plants, he says : " Mille praeterea 
" semina vel crudo cespite virentia, vel subacta sulco flores 
" amicissimos apibus creant, ut sunt in irriguo solo frutices 
" amelli," etc. Yet Frutex is used by him for very small 
plants ; for in the next chapter he calls " Thymus frutex. 
" Amelli frutex luteus, purpureus flos." Col. lib. IX. c. 13. 

Ver. 275. 
; — " ::- Violae sublucet purpura nigrae." 

* Virgil is very exact and picturesque in this expression. 
He shews the same sort of exactness, Georg. II. ver. 13 ; where^ 
he takes notice of the different colours of the upper and under 
side of the same leaf. 

" Glauca canentia fronde salicta." 

Purpureus is used by the botanists for the violet colour 
Camden's Britannia ; Plants in Hampshire. 

Ver. 281—285. 

" Si quem proles subito defecerit omnis. 

" Nec genus unde novae stirpis revocetur, habeoit ; 
" Tempus et Arcadii memoranda inventa magistri 
" Pandere ; quoque modo caesis jam saepe juvencis 
" * Insincerus apes tulerit cruor." 


* Varro says: " Ex bove putrefacto scio nasci dulcissimas 
" apes mellis matres, a quo eas Graeci Bouyovas appellant." 
Lib. II. c. v. — And again ; " Apes nascuntur partim ex apibus, 
" partim ex bubulo corpore putrefacto ; itaque Archelaus in 
" epigrammate ait eas esse — /3oor (pQifAtvns ^^olriy.ivx Texva." 
Lib. II. c. xvi. — Virgil, who does not easily give credit to such 
stories, lays the scene of his fable in the country of the Gipsies. 

Columella mentions Democritus and Mago to have asserted 

this generation : " Progenerari posse apes juvenco perempto 
" Democritus et Mago, nec minus Virgilius, prodiderunt." 
Lib. IX. c. xiv. 

Ver. 287—294. 

" * ! Qua Pellaei gens fortunata Canopi 

" Accolit effuso stagnantem flumine Nilum, 

" Et circum pictis vehitur sua rura phaselis; 

" Quaque *- 2 pharetratae vicinia Persidis urget 

" + Et viridem ** Aegyptum nigra foecundat arenS, 

" Et diversa * 4 ruens * 5 septem discurrit in ora 

" Usque * 6 coloratis amnis devexus ab Indis; 

" Omnis in hac certam regio jacit arte salutem." 

*' Virgil very properly lays this scene in Egypt, which 
always was, and is still, famous for witchcraft. 

He describes the upper and lower Egypt ; the three first 
verses relate to the lower Egypt, or the Delta ; the two following 
to the upper Egypt ; the two last to the course of the river : 
where in seven verses he comprehends what is most remarkable 
concerning that country, and its river, the Septemfluus Nilus. 

* 2 Claudian, in his Idyl. de Nilo, mentions, among other 
inhabitants bordering on that river, " Gens compositis circum- 
" vallata sagittis." v. 

T This passage has long sounded wrong to me. There seems 
to me to be something in the construction not Virgilian, and 
something puzzled in the sense. 

I find since, that Huet and Segrais had a dispute about it. 
Segrais thought it faulty, and corrupted : " Ego contra (says 
" Kuet) integram esse asseverarem ; planumque et intellectu 
" facile ; si modo perspecta esset veterum de ortu Nili opinio ; 
" qui in India oriri eum, et ex ea in Aegyptum profluere, falsd 
" quidem, at pro certo et constanter arbitrati sunt." Huet. 
Com. p. 265. 

The Florentine manuscript reads the passage differently, but 
does not take away the difficulty. It only transposes the two 
verses : " Et diversa," etc. is first in it ; and " Et viridem," 
etc. second. 

" Et viridem Aegyptum" is a repetition of what has been 
said before, ver. 287 — 289. It is suspicious, from its being 

L 2 


placed differently in the Florentine manuscript. If it was 
omitted, and the other line understood of the Ganges, would 
it not set all right ? The Ganges has its seven streams as well 
as the Nile ; and is therefore joined with it again, Aen. IX. 20. 
Ei £s xxl Zjxnxv Klywnlov AiBioTtix fyjiJ.Qxkoifj.vj (rovri Ss r,yov/J.sOx 
xcti rov zsoIx/jjov (the Nile) zjgxrlHv) xxl ovitco %viA[Airfu zsgos rr,v 
'IvcJiv a.[j.<pco, rocxvrr) GvvlsQsTax. Ylolx[j.ol os dfj.tyow o/j.oioi, "kofiax- 
ixivu rov Ivoov Tc xai Ne/Xov zjspxivovai rs yag rxs r,Ttsipovs Iv 
cocioc srovs, bvors r, yri spx rovrou, etc. Philostr. de Vita Apol. 
lib. I. c. i. 

* 3 Herodotus, lib. II., gives the following description of 
Egypt: " Quum regionem supergressus est Nilus, solae urbes 
" apparent, eatenus extantes, ut insulis Aegei maris fere assi- 
*' miles esse videantur. Nam caetera Aegypti pelagus effici- 
" untur ; ipsaeque urbes solae extant: Quae stationes navium 
" faciunt. Nec jam, cum hoc contingit, per alveum fluminis, 
" sed per medium campi navigatur," etc. p. 140. edit. H. Ste- 
phani, 1592. 

In the same place, Herodotus, speaking of a particular cus- 
tom used in Egypt, says : " Quod factum est, ex quo Aegyptus 
*' fuit ditionis Persarum." 

Presently after, speaking of a tradition that the city of 
Memphis was built by Menes, who turned the course of the 
Nile thither, he says: ** Supra Memphim centum circitur 
" stadia meridiem versus, aggesta humo ad anfractum fluminis 
" arefecisse pristinum alveum : ita flumen facto alveo per me- 
" dium montium fluere. Adeo nunc quoque sub Persis iste an- 
" fractus Nili qui coercitus fluit, magnis praesidiis custoditur, 
" quotannis obseptus aggeribus ; quos si refringens flumen velit 
" ea parte redundare, omnis Memphis adibit periculum ne 
" aquis operiatur." Pag. 141. 

Again, immediately after, he says: " Est Memphis in an- 
" gustiis Aegvpti sita." 

Again, enumerating the several tributes paid to Darius, he 
says: " Ab Aegypto et Lybibus Aegypto conterminis, et 
'■* Cyrena et Barca (in portione namque Aegypti istae ordi- 
" nantur) septingenta proveniebant talenta, praeter pecuniam 
" e piscario proventu lacus Maerios. Excepta hac pecunia et 
" certo frumenti numero, septingenta talenta obveniebant. 
" Nam centum viginti millibus Persarum, qui in Albo muro 
" Memphitico stationem habent, et eorum auxiliariis admetiun- 
" tur illi frumentum." Pag. 226. 

A Babylon was built by the Persians on a steep rock over 
the Nile, a little above the head of the Delta, as appears by 
Strabo ; " Ulterius sursum naviganti est Babylon castellum na- 
" tura munitum, a Babyloniis quibusdam conditum, qui huc 
" secedentes, eo in loco habitationem ii regibus impetrarunt. 


" Nunc in ea collocata est una ex tribus legionibus quae Aegyp- 

" tum custodiunt." Lib. XVII. Quaer. Whether, if part 

of Grand Cairo is not still called Babylon ? 

Strabo gives the following account of Aegypt. — Of the 
Lower, he says; " Nilo exundante, tota regio undis tegitur 
" praeter habitationes, quae aut nativis collibus aut aggeribus 
" factitiis impositae sunt, non pagi modo, sed etiam urbes me- 
" morabiles ; quae eminus conspectae insularum speciem prae- 
" bent." Lib. XVII.— Of the Upper Aegypt, he says ; " Si- 
" mili modo regio supra Delta irrigatur, nisi quod Nilus qua- 
" tuor millibus stadiorum unico alveo recta delabitur, etc. 
" Denique, ut verbo dicam, fluvio irrigua est sola ea pars 
" Aegypti, quae jacet ad utramque Nili ripam, et raro usquam 
" ccc stadiorum continuam latitudinem habitabilem obtinet. 
" Orditur ab Aethiopiae montibus et in ipsius Delta verticem 
" desinit: itaque similis est fasciae (as the translator renders it) 
" in longum explicatae." 

As to the dykes or dams made on the side of the Nile, Strabo 

tells us, " Artificium autem, quod Nilo adhibetur, tanti 

est, quanti industria naturam vincens," etc 

* 4 Ruens is used by Virgil rather than Fluens on account of 
the several cataracts in the Nile. Pliny says of the Nile from 
its first rise ; " Postremo inclusus montibus, nec alibi torren- 
" tior, vectus aquis properantibus ad locum Aethiopum, qui 
" Catadupi vocantur, novissimo cataracte inter occursantes sco- 
" pulos non fluere immenso fragore creditur, sed ruere," lib. 
V. c. ix. where he manifestly only explains more at large the 
same thought which Virgil expresses in one word. 

* 5 As to the mouths of the Nile, Pliny says; " Undecim 
" Nili ostia reperiuntur, quatuor quae ipsi falsa ora appellant: 
" sed celeberrima septem ;" which he names, lib. V. c. x. 

And thus Strabo; " Nilus ab Aethiopiae finibus recta fluit 
" ad septentrionem usque ad eum locum qui Delta appellatur, 
" ubi tanquam a vertice quodam scissus (ut Plato inquit) figu- 
" ram conficit triangulam. Latera trianguli alvei sunt duo 
" Nili utrinque ad mare descendentis, alter ad dextram Pelu- 

" sium usque, alter ad sinistram ad Canopum usque. 

" Duo itaque haec hostia Nili, alterum Pelusiacum vocatur, 
" alterum Canopicum : inter haec alia quinque ostia sunt, quae 
" quidem mentionem mereantur; multa alia tenuiora." 

* 5 NeTXoj /asv o TtolziAos 1$, 'Iv£a/v eV ' ' AijvtiIh (psgo/xavor. Pl'0- 
copius, lib. VI. zjscI Ktio-iaxJos. 

" Custos Nili crescentis in arva 

" Memphis."-- Lucan, Lib. VIII. 477. 

When Achoreus the Aegyptian priest is giving an account tp 


Jullus Caesar of the course of the Nile, he says that after it 
has passed the cataracts : 

" Hinc, Abaton quam nostra vocat veneranda vetustas, 
" Terra potens, primos sentit percussa tumultus, 
" Et scopuli, placuit fluvii quos dicere venas, 
" Quod manifesta novi primum dant signa tumoris. 
" Hinc montes natura vagis circumdedit undis, 
" Qui Libyae, te, Nile, negent : quos inter in alta 

" It convalle jacens jam mohbus unda receptis." 

Pharsal. lib. X. 323. 

Quaer. Whether Molibus, in the last verse, does notrefer to 
the moles or dams at the Egyptian Babylon, made there on pur- 
pose to raise the water according to pleasure ? 

Ver. 317—320. 

" + l Pastor Aristaeus, fugens + 2 Peneia Tempe, 
" Amissis, + 3 ut fama, apibus morboque fameque, 
" Tristis ad -f- 4 extremi saci - um caput astitit amnis 
" Multa querens ; atque hac aftatHs + 5 voce parentem." 

•f* Virgil seems here to use the name of grazier, or herds- 
man, in introducing the hero of his story ; with the same sort 
of intent, that our dramatic writers formerly used to prefix 
the characters of their Dramatis Personae to their plays ; and 
the character thus aflfixed to him is veiw well kept up through 
the whole story. He appeared at first with his hair all rough 
and discomposed (from ver. 417.) — Is in a violent passion (329, 
etc.) — Bawls loud enough to frighten his poor mother (357, 

see 333, sonitum — 349, impulit et 353, gemitu tanto) 

calls her names (as I fear, frOm 360) ; and hints at a scandalous 
aspersion on her, and even on himself (323) ; — bursts into a 
loud halloo, when he runs at Proteus (438) ; and snaps hirn up 
short, when he speaks to him (447 et 450.) 

+ 2 The epithet here is no idle one. The Romans seem to 
me to have used the word Tempe, as the Greeks did YIz%z$etaoi 
(in general) for any very pleasing place ; or pleasure-grounds, 
as our gardeners of late call them. Thus our own author: 

" At latis otia fundis, 

" Speluncae, vivique lacus ; at frigida Tempe, 
" Mugitusque boum, mollesque sub arbox*e somni, 
" Non absunt." Georg. II. 471. 

These Tempes, or happy retirements, are (I think) always 
represented as cool and shady : thus Seneca, or whoever wrote 
the Troas, calls them, Opaca : and Statius, in one place, Um- 
brosa; in another, Tenebrosa. When they don't speak of 


pleasing places in general, they add the distinguishing name of 
the place : as Peneia, here ; Tliessala, for the same in Horace, 
(ana Aelian); " Heliconia, et Tecmessia Tempe," in Ovid, etc. 
f a I am apt to think that the Romans looked on their old 
fables, and stories, in three difterent views ; some as certain, 
some as doubtful, and some as false : and should also think 
that they made use of the expressions, " ut fama, ut perhibent, 
" ut fertur," and the like, for the middle sort of the three : 
though, by the way, there is more authority for Aristaeus's me- 
thod of procuring bees again, than one should at first suppose. 
It was from this notion that the Greeks gave the epithet of 
BsysvsiV to bees ; and one of their poets calls them, 

Boor (pOi/^sv/if TszTColnixivx rsKvtx. 

Democritus, Aelian, and Hesychius, afnrm it roundly, among 
their writers ; and Varro and Columella make no doubt about 
it, among the Latin : not to speak of an African author, quoted 
for the same opinion by the latter. Virgil, you know, says it 
was used with the greatest assurance of success by the most 
knowing people of Africa, and by some of the neighbouring 
nations more to the east of them. 

t 3 Extremi signifies the extreme parts of any line, or thing ; 
and, consequently, the beginning as well as the end of either. 
Here it is used evidently for the beginning or source of the 
river Peneus : and so Virgil uses it too in his first Georgic : 

" Exercete, viri, tauros ! serite hordea campis ! 

" Usque sub extremum brumae intractabilis imbrem." 

that is, quite up to the borne (or beginning) of the Bruma ; 
(about the middle of December) ; when the great rains, and 
the great holidays in consequence of them, would not allow 
them to work. 

-j- 5 " Voce affari' 1 (I should think) is no more common in 
Latin, than he hears with ears (which gave so much offence to 
poor parson Evans), is in English. It is said here, Hcic voce; 
" with this vociferation," or, " in the following clamorous man- 
ner :" for which, see the speech itself; and ver. 333, 349, 353, 

Ver. 333—335. 

— " t Mater sonitum thalamo sub fluminis alti 
" Sensit: eamcircum Milesia vellera Nymphae 
" Carpebant, hyali saturo fucata colore." 

t For the different sorts of habitations for the water-deities, 
and several descriptions of them, see Pol. XIV. 63.. 

152 on the georgics. 

Ver. 345—347. 

" Inter quas curam Clymene * narrabat inanem 
" Vuleani, Martisque dolos, et dulcia furta, 
" Atque Chao densos Divum numerabat amores." 

* The Poet seems here to intimate, that when ladies meet, the 
common topic of discourse amongst them is love-intrigue : at 
least, that it was so in former days. 

t Virgil mentions this, as the most noted among all the stories, 
told by the water-nymphs in Cyrene's grotto. 

The water-nymphs, telling this kind of stories together, was 
so known a thing, that it was a subject even for statuary too : 

" Illic adspicias scopulis haerere sorores ; 

" Et canere antiqui dulcia furta Jovis: 
" Ut Semele est combustus, ut est deperditus Io ; 

" Denique ut ad Trojae tecta volarit avis." 

Propertius, lib. II. xxiii. ver. 20. 

Leuconoe and her sisters divert themselves in the same manner 
whilst they are at work; and Leuconoe, in particular, tells this 
very story of Mars and Venus. Ovid often calls it " the most 
" trite story among the Gods." Met. IV. ver. 189. — Art. Am. 
II. ver. 563.— Amor. lib. I. El. ix. ver. 40. 

Both Virgil and Propertius call the subjects of these stories, 
Dulcia : and the latter uses the word, Canere, for the manner 
of telling them ; as the former says, " Carmine quo captae." 
The subjects in general agree with those most used in our novels 
and romances: and they were told, either in verse, or in an 
affected poetical kind of prose ; for Carmen is used indifferently 
for the one or the other. Propertius might have an eye to this 
affected style, in those expressions of his relating to Jupiter's 
amours : 

" Ut Semele est combustus, ut est deperditus 16." 

Apuleius makes use of this affected, lulling style, in his ro- 
mance: as one may see, by his very proposition itself; which 
ought to be plain and easy, even in a poem. He begins thus : 
" At ego tibi, sermone isto Milesio, varias fabulas conseram ; 
" auresque tuas benevolas lepido susurro permulceam : mox, si 
" papyrum Aegyptiam argutia Nilotici calami inscriptam non 
" spreveris inspicere, figuras fortunasque hominum in alias 
" imagines conversas, et in se rursum mutuo nexu refectas, ut 
" mireris, exordior." Exord. to his Asinus Aureus. 

Ver. 358—362. 
" Duc, age, duc ad nos ; fas illi limina Diviim 
" Tangere, ait. Simul alta f jubet discedere late 


" Flumina, qua juvenis gressus inferret : ad illum 
" Curvata in montis faciem circumstetit unda ; 
" Accepitque sinu vasto, misitque sub amnem." 

t Thus Ovid says, very strongly, of another river-god : 

" Cedere jussit aquam ; jussa recessit aqua." 

Lib. III. El. vi. ver. 44. 

This is represented sometimes in antiques ; as partieularly on 
a gem in Maffei's collection (Vol. II. pl. 34.), where you see 
Neptune beneath the water ; which hangs suspended, in a sort 
of arch, over his head. 

Ver. 363-373. 

" Jamque domum mirans genetricis et humida regna, 
" Speluncisque *' lacus clausos, lucosque * 2 sonantes, 
" Ibat; et ingenti motu stupefactus aquarum, 
" Omnia sub magna labentia flumina terra 
" Spectabat diversa locis ; Phasimque, Lycumque * 3 , 
" Et caput, unde altus primum se erumpit Enipeus ; 
" Unde pater Tiberinus, et unde Aniena fluenta, 
" Saxosumque sonans Hypanis, Mysusque * 4 Caicus; 
" Et gemina auratus taurino cornua vultu 
" * 5 Eridanus, quo non alius * per pinguia culta 
" In mare purpureum * 6 violentior influit amnis." 

* l Virgil does not mean here rivers in general, but such only 
as run under ground and hide themselves part of their course. 

* 2 Ruaeus's interpretation of this passage seems very forced : 
Virgil certainly means groves, echoing with falls of water ; his 
nymphs being partly wood, and partly water-nymphs, as appears 
both by their names, and by the following verses : 

!< Nymphasque sorores, 

" Centum quae sylvas, centum quae flumina servant." 

Ver. 383. 

* 3 Pliny, spealdng of rivers which run partly under ground, 
and burst forth again, names first the Lycus in Asia. Nat. 
Hist. lib. II. c. 103. 

— " Ubi terreno Lycus est epotus hiatu 

" Existit procul hinc, alioque renascitur ore." 

Ovid. Met. lib. XV. 273. 

* 4 " Et Mysum capitisque sui ripaeque prioris 
" Poenituisse ferunt, alia nunc ire, Caicum." 

Ovid, ibid. ver. 277. 


* 5 " Padus e gremio Vesuli montis celsissimum in cacumen 
" elati, finibus Ligurum Vagiennorum visendo fonte profluens, 
" condensque sese cuniculo, et in Forovibiensium agro iterum 
" exoriens, nulli amnium claritate inferior. Graecis dictus 
" Eridanus." Pliny, lib. III. c. xvi. 

* See Pol. p. 232. 

*' This may be understood of the Po emptying itself by very 
strong currents into the sea. I was assured bv boatmen, as I 
sailed before the mouths of the Po, that the water continues fresh 
three or four miles into the sea ; and, I observed, as I sailed 
by the embouchures, that the water looked white and muddy 
(as the Po is), as far as I could see. But without restraining it 
to this sense, Virgil may be understood by Violentior to mean 
the damages done by the overflowing of the Po all along its 
course, of which he himself must frequently have been an eye- 
witness. Pliny, lib. III. c. xvi. speaking of the overfiowing of 
the Po, says, that it is " Agris quam navigiis torrentior;" mean- 
ing, I suppose, in his outre style, that it carries countries and 
fields with it rather than ships. 

T I have, on another occasion, formerly (Essay on the Odyssey, 
Dial. V. p. 309.) taken notice of the beautiful contrast in tne 
run of that coupletr, 

" Unde pater Tiberinus," etc. 

the former line of which is one of the most soft-flowing verses, 
and the latter one of the roughest and most embarrassed, of any 
in the Georgics. 

I have since been sometimes apt to imagine, that Virgil in- 
serted the second of these lines, after the first writing of this 
passage, on purpose to make this contrast : because, if you leave 
out that line in the reading of it, the whole passage would be 
much more regular and exact than it is. 

As it stands now, all the rivers seem to be named in disorder ; 
but, omitting it, they will each follow the other, in an exact 
geographical order, from east to west : the first mentioned being 
the farthest east, in Armenia ; the second, another Asiatic river, 
but nearer Greece ; the third, in Greece ; and the three others 
all in Italy, each lving farther and farther west. the Tiber, the 
Anio, and the Po. 

Ver. 374. 
" Postquam est in thalami pendentia f pumice tecta 
" Perventum." 

t The roofs of the great apartments in the old Thermae (as 
appears in those of Caracalla at Rome at this day) were chiefly 
composed of Pumice-stone, for lightness. 


They were used too for grottoes : " Erosa saxa (pumices) 

" in aedificiis, quae Musea vocant, dependentia; ad imaginera 
" specus arte reddendam." Plin. Nat. Hist. lib. XXXVI. c. 
21. p. 503. 

" Antra subit tophis laqueata et pumice vivo." 

Ov. Fast. II. 313. (Herc.) 

Ver. 382, 383. 

" Simul ipse precatur 

" f Oceanumque patrem rerum, nymphasque sorores, 
" Centum quae sylvas, centumque flumina servant.'' 

t Virgil calls Oceanus, Pater rerum, " Lord of all the wa- 
" tery world ;" whereas Juvenal calls Neptune only Pater 
Aegei, or, " Lord of all the inland seas. ,, Sat. XIII. ver. 81. 

Ver. 425—429. 

" Jam t rapidus torrens sitientes Sirius Indos 
" Ardebat caelo, et medium sol igneus orbem 
" Hauserat: arebant herbae, et * l cava flumina siccis 
" *' Faucibus ad limum radii tepefacta coquebant : 
" Cum Proteus consueta, petens e fluctibus antra 
" Ibat." 

f So Manilius : 

" Subsequitur rapido contenta Canicula cursu." 

I. ver. 386. 
He is represented as running rapidly after the hare, in the 
Farnese globe ; Pol. pl. xxiv. and with rays of fire on his head. 

#* Shallow, low within the banlcs, almost dry. 
* 2 In allusion to throats parched with thirst. 

Ver. 465, 466. 

" fTe, dulcis conjux, te solo in litore secum, 
" Te, veniente die, te decedente canebat." 

t Mr. Benson, who studied versification so particularly, used 
to call this, " The softest couplet that ever was writ." 

Ver. 471, 472. 

" At cantu commotae t Erebi de sedibus imis 
" Umbrae ibant tenues, simulacraque luce carentum." 

t The artist who designed the pictures for the famous manu- 
script Virgil in the Vatican, probably mistook the word Erebus 
here, if Erebus properly means the nrst region in Hades. He 


represents Ixlon on his wheel, as drawn out of Tartarus, quite 
to the inner bank of Styx, by the music of Orpheus. 

Ver. 511—515. 

" Qualis populea moerens Philomela sub + umbra 
" Amissos queritur foetus, quos durus arator 
" Observans nido implumes detraxit ; at illa 
" Flet noctem, ramoque sedens miserabile carmen 
" Integrat, et moestis late loca questibusimplet." 

T Mons. Huet makes a very indifferent objection to this pas- 
sage. " Comment," sayshe, " peuvent se rencontrer ensemble 
«•* la nuit et 1'ombre du peuplier ?" Huetiana, § xlv. 

" Tectae fronde queruntur aves." Ov. Ep. X. 

Ver. 563, 564. 

" lllo Virgilium me tempore dulcis alebat 
" f Parthenope, studiis florentem ignobilis oti." 

+ There may be a propriety in this that is not generally re- 
marked. Naples was a place of pleasure and indolence : and it 
was therefore (as some suppose ; Addison's Travels, p. 128.) 
said to have been founded by Parthenope, one of the Sirens ; 
who were Goddesses of Indolence and Pleasure. 

" Improba Siren 

" Desidia." Hor. lib. II. Sat. iii. 

" Otiosa Neapolis." Id. Epod. v. 

Statius agrees with Virgil, in the character of his own city 
Naples. Sylv. lib. III. Eleg. ult. 

" Pax secura locis, et desidis otia vitae." Ver. 85. etc. 

And Silius Italicus : 

" Molles urbi ritus, atque hospita musis 

«Otia." L. XII. 31. 

See the other quotations in Mr. Addison, ibid. 

This idea too makes the contrast here, between Augustus 
and Virgil, the stronger. 

* Pausanias, speaking of Troezene, says; " Musarum tem- 
" plum est; et prope templum ara perantiqua visitur. Ad hanc 
" Musis immolant, et Somno. Somnum etenim ex Diis maxi- 
" me Musis charum esse dicunt." — Upon which place there is 
a note, observing very justly: " Per somnum non desidiam et 


" torporem, sed honestum otium animique tranquillitatem in- 
" telligi." 

This is a pretty antithesis, and a compliment to ms patrons. 
As different countries liave a different manner of agriculture, 
and indeed thedifference of climates requires different methods, 
therefore it was proper that Virgil should signify where he was 
when he wrote his Georgics : for we are thereby informed, that 
the rules he gives particularly respect the place where he 
wrote, and are such as were practised chiefly in that country. 
I say chiefly, because he sometimes launches out into other 
countries; and gives more general rules. It is certain, that 
most of Virgil's instructions, and the customs he describes, are 
still chiefly used in the kingdom of Naples. 





Ver. 5—7. 

" Arma virurnque cano, Trojae qui *' primus ab oris 
" *? Italiam, fato profugus, Lavinaque venit 
' " Litora." 

i" That Virgil wrote this excellent poem with a design of 
assisting and connrming Augustus's usurpation of the sole go- 
vernment of the Roman state, is proved at large in Polymetis, 
D. III. notes 6 to 13. One must use so hard a name for it, 
vv T hen one looks back upon his proscription ; but one cannot use 
it without pain, when we look onward to the mildness of his 
administration, and his patronage of the most deserving in all 
works of genius or art. 

*' It has been objected, that Antenor came first to Italy, 
that is, to Padua ; but Padua was not formerlv reckoned in 
Italv, but in Gaul. Dion Cassius expresslv tells us, that even 
in Julius Caesar's time it was reckoned in Gaul : for, speaking 
of a prodigy, which happened there on the day of the battle of 
Pharsalia, he says : 'Ev UoflxoviiJ, rr,s vuv 'IraX/ar, rora os sn 
YaKoflixs, opiSar ti-jxs, etc. — But supposing it had been properly 
in Italy, what would it signify? Aeneas was the first, who came 
to that part of Italy (Lavina litora) where the foundation was 
laid of the Roman tuture greatness, in which Antenor v> r as not 
any ways concerned. 


** That is, to that part of Italy, where the foundation of the 
Roman empire was to be laid ; and therefore Virgil adds 
" Lavinaque litora" toconfine his meaning. In the third Ae- 
neid, ver. 381, Virgil uses Italiam in the same confined sense, in 
the prophecy of Helenus : 

" Principio Italiam, quam tu jam rere propinquam, 
" Vicinosque, ignare, paras invadere portus, 
" Longa procul longis via dividit invia terris:" 

i. e. The whole body of Italy separates you from Italy ; that is, 
that part of Italy, to which you are to go. 

Ver. 16—21. 

" Urbs antiqua fuit, Tyrii tenuere coloni, 
" Carthago, Italiam contra, Tiberinaque longe 
" Ostia ; dives opum, studiisque asperrima belli: 
" Quam Juno fertur terris magis omnibus unam 
" Posthabita coluisse Samo : hic illius f arma, 
" Hic currus fuit." 

t This is not spoken of the Roman, but the Carthaginian 
Juno. Thus Ovid of the latter : 

" Poeniteat quod non foveo Carthaginis arces, 
" Cum mea sint illo currus et arma loco." 

Fast. lib. VI. ver. 46. 

One would think from this, compared with what Apuleius 
says in his prayer of Psyche', that the Carthaginians represented 
their Juno sometimes in a chariot drawn by lions : " Magni 
" Jovis germana et conjuga ! Sive tu Sami, quae querulo partu 
" vagituque et alimonia tua gloriatur, tenes vetusta delubra ! 
" Sive celsae Carthaginis, quae te virginem vectura leonis caelo 
" commeantem percolit, beatas sedes frequentas ! Sive prope 
" ripas Inachi, qui te jam nuptam Tonantis, et reginam Dearum 
" memorat !" etc. As. Aur. lib. VI. 

Ver. 25, 26. 
" Hinc populum late regem belloque f superbum, 
" Venturum excidio Libyae : sic volvere Parcas." 

t Superbus is used in Latin, and most of the ianguages de- 
rived from it, in a good sense, as well as a bad. — " Superbae 
" virtute et factis animae." Sil. Ital. X. 573. — " Superbi 
" Tarchontis domus." Id. VIII. 474. The house of the Great 
Tarchon, or Tarchon the Great. 

Vee. 40—49. 
" Cum Juno, aeternum servans sub pectore vulnus, 
" Haec secum: Mene incepto desistere victam, 


" Nec posse Italia Teucrorum avertere regem? 
" Quippe vetor fatis. Pallasne exurere classem 
" Ai'givum, atque ipsos potuit submergere ponto, 
" Unius ob noxam et furias Ajacis Oilei ? 
" Ipsa, Jovis t 1 rapidum jaculata e nubibus ignem, 
" Disjecitque rates, evertitque aequora ventis: 
" t 2 Illum expirantem transfixo pectore fiammas 
" Turbine corripuit, scopuloque infixit acuto." 

t 1 The most distinguished three among the tvvelve g 
Gods, as they were called, to wit, Jupiter, Minerva, and Juno, 
were allowed to thunder ; and no others. How closely these 
three were supposed by some to be connected, see Pol. VI. 80, 
81, et 82. 

t 2 To this, Flac. Argonaut. I. 372. 

The story is told more at large in Agamem. Act. III. Sc. i. 

Virgil might have an eye here to some celebrated picture of 
this Ajax. — " (Apollodori est) Ajax fulmine incensus, qui Per- 
" gami spectatur hodie." Plin. lib. XXXV. c. ix. p. 249. 
ed. Elz. 

Neptune pursued him still farther ; which also was the sub- 
ject of another noble picture, described by Philostratus in his 
Icones, II. 13. 

Vee. 86— 95. 
t Venti, velut agmine facto, 

" Qua data porta, ruunt, et terras turbine perflant. 

" Incubuere mari, totumque a sedibus imis 

" Una Eurusque Notusque ruunt, creberque procellis 

" Africus : et vastos volvunt ad litora fluctus. 

" Insequitur clamorque virum, stridorque rudentum. 

" Eripiunt subito nubes caelumque diemque 

" Teucrorum ex oculis : ponto nox incubat atra. 

" Intonuere poli, et crebris micat ignibus aether : 

" Praesentemque viris intentant omnia mortem." 

t This storm of VirgiPs probably contributed towards setting 

all the Roman poets almost after him a storm-painting. In 

Agamemnon, we have a puerile imitation of it. Lucan has 
another, carried to excess. Ovid (according to his manner) has 
several: and Flaccus one (Arg. 1. 641.), which was certainly 
taken from this, unless both that and this were originally copied 

from Apollonius Rhodius. Juvenal seems to ridicule their 

overcharging their pieces ; where, speaking of a real storm, he 
says, it was as bad as a poetical one, Sat. XII. 24. 

* The description of a storm was a common topic of the 
poets; and in which they frequently miscarried by too great 


exaggerations. Juvenal, describing what his friend Catullus 
suffered in a storm, says : 

" Omnia fiunt 

" Talia, tam graviter, si quando Poetica surgit 

" Tempestas.'"' Sat. XII. 22. 

Ver. 123—131. 

" Interea magno misceri murmure pontum, 
" Emissamque hiemem sensit Neptunus, et imis 
" Stagna refusa vadis : graviter commotus, et alto 
" Prospiciens, summa f placidum caput extulit unda." 

T The aspect of Neptune, in all the good antiques I have 
seen of him, is majestic and serene. The lower sort of artists 
represent him sometimes with an angrv and disturbed air ; and 
one may observe the same difference in this particular between 
the greater and less poets, as there is between the bad and the 
good artists. Thus Ovid describes Neptune with a sullen look : 

" Ter Neptunus aquis cum torvo brachia vultu 
" Exserere ausus erat ; ter non tulit aeris aestus." 

Met. II. ver. 271. 

whereas Virgil expressly tells us, that he has a mild face, even 
where he is representing him in a passion. 

Ver. 163—172. 

" + Est in secessu longo locus : insula portum 
" Efficit objectu laterum; quibus omnis ab alto 
" Frangitur, inque sinus scindit sese unda reductos. 
" Hinc atque hinc vastae rupes, geminique minantur 
" In caelum scopuli : quorum sub vertice late 
" Aequora tuta silent : tum sylvis scena coruscis 
" Desuper, horrentique atrum nemus imminet umbra. 
" Fronte sub adversa scopulis pendentibus antrum : 
" Ii^tus aquae dulces, vivoque sedilia saxo ; 
" Nympharum domus." 

+ There is a place in the kingdom of Tunis, under the pro- 
montory of Mercury (now called Cape Bon), a few miles east of 
Carthage, that exactly answers Virgil's description of the grotto, 
where Aeneas anchored on his first coming to Africa. This 
hollow goes in 20 or 30 fathoms under the rock ; and those who 
took out the stone from it (for it seems to have been a quai-ry), 
left a sort of pillars, at proper distances, to support the weio-ht 
at top from falling in. xhe arches, which these pillars help 
to form, lie open to the sea ; there are little streams perpetually 



draining from the rocks, and seats of stone formed within, pro- 
bably for the use of those who worked in that quarry. There 
is a cliff on each side, and the brow of the mountain is over- 
shaded with trees. From Dr. Shaw (then at Florence, in his 
return from the spot). 

Ver. 181—183. 

" Tum Cererem corruptam undis, Cerealiaque arma 
" Expediunt fessi rerum : frugesque receptas 
" Et #, torrere parant flammis, et frangere saxo." 

* Ruaeus is mistaken in his observation on this passage. 
" Torrere flammis Cererem" signifies, to dry their corn, as the 
ancients used to do before they ground it. — See Georg. I. 267. 

Ver. 188—190. 

" Navem in conspectu nullam, tres litore # cervos 
(t Prospicit errantes : hos tota armenta sequuntur 
'< A tergo, et longum per valles pascitur agmen." 

* Sallust, in his Jugurthine war, giving an account of the 
first inhabitants of Africa, says, that they lived chiefly upon 
venison: " Africam initio habuere Gaetuli et Libyci, asperi, 
" incultique ; queis cibus erat caro ferina." 

Ver. 199—213. 

" f Vina (a) bonus quae deinde cadis onerarat Acestes 
" Litore Trinacrio, dederatque abeuntibus heros, 
" Dividit ; et dictis (b) moerentia pectora mulcet: 
" O (c) socii (neque enim ignari sumus ante malorum), 
" O passi (d) graviora ; dabit Deus (e) his quoque finem. 
" Vos et Scyllaeam rabiem, penitusque sonantes 
" Accestis scopulos ; vos et Cyclopea saxa 
" Experti: (/) revocate animos, moestumque timorem 
" Mittite : forsan et haec olim meminisse juvabit. 
" Per (g) varios casus, per tot discrimina rerum, 
" Tendimus in Latium : (h) sedes ubi fata quietas 
" Ostendunt : illic fas regna (i) resurgere Trojae. 
** Durate, et vosmet rebus servate secundis. 
" Talia voce refert : (k) curisque ingentibus aeger, 
" Spem vultu simulat, premit altum corde dolorem." 

+ This speech has a good deal of the gay air that is in Teucer^s 
in Horace : It is a gaiety, mixed with concern. The occasions 

too were a good deal alike. It is not easy to determine, 

which of the two might copy the other in this case : but from 
the subject, and turn of it, l"shouId rather imagine that Horace's 
is the original. It is true, Virgil was the elder of the two ; 


but the difference between ■ their ages is so small, that it is 
scarce to be taken into the question : for the people, who have 
writ their lives, make Virgil but four years older than Horace. 
On the other side, this speech of Aeneas is in VirgiFs last work ; 
and that of Teucer was probably among Horace's earlier pieces : 
for it seems likely that his Odes in general (especially his drinking 
and love Odes) were writ in the gayer part of his life ; and his 
discourses and moral pieces, when he grew more advanced in 

years, and consequently more serious. 1 shall subjoin 

Horace's speech at full length, with marks to shew where they 
agree : by which it will appear, that it is in no less than ten 
particulars, in the compass of so few lines : and yet the different . 
characters of the Epic and Lyric Poet are preserved ; and some- 
thing of the different tempers of the writers is visible in each : 
for Horace's mirth is (of the two) the more gay and jovial ; and 
VirgiPs the more modest and sedate. 

" Teucer Salamina patremque 

" Cum fugeret (k) ; tamen (a) uda Lyaeo 
" Tempora populea fertur vinxisse corona, 

" Sic (b) tristes affatus amicos. 
" Quo nos cumque feret melior Fortuna parente, 

" Ibimus, 6 (c) socii, comitesque. 
** Nil (e) desperandum, Teucro duce, et auspice Teucro: 

" Certus enim (h) promisit Apollo, 
" (g) Ambiguam teJlure nova (i) Salamina futuram. 

" O fortes, (d) pejoraque passi 
" Mecum saepe viri, nunc (a) vino (f) pellite curas l 

" Cras ingens iterabimus aequor. 

Lib. I. Od. vii. 32. 

Ver. 246-252. 

" Antenor potuit, mediis elapsus Achivis, 
" Illyricos * 2 penetrare sinus, atque intima tutus 
" Regna Liburnorum, et fontem superare * Timavi : 
" Unde per ora novem vasto cum murmure montis 
" It mare proruptum, et pelago premit arva sonanti. 
" Hic tamen ille urbem *' 2 Patavi sedesque locavit 
" Teucrorum ; et genti nomen dedit, armaque fixit 
" Troia." 

* : " Satis constat — Antenorem cum multitudine Henetum 
" ver.isse in intimum maris Adriatici sinum : Euganeisque (qui 
" inter mare Alpesque incolebant) pulsis, Henetos Trojanosque 
" eas tenuisse terras : et in quem primum egressi sunt locum, 
" Troja vocatur; pagoque inde Trojano nomen est : gens uni- 
l< versa Veneti appellati." Liv. lib. I. § i. 

U 2 


" De Venetis duplex fertur sententia. Quidam enim eos 
«' quoque Gallos faciunt, Gallorum Venetorum qui ad occasum 
*' habitant Gentiles. Alii e bello Trojano cum Antenore eo 
" locorurn evasisse tradunt Venetorum Paphlagonum quosdam." 
Strabo, lib. V. 

* The river Timavus bursts out all at once from the bottom 
of a mountain, and divides itself into nine different streams 
before its runs on for the Adriatic sea. It is so iarge itself, 
that Virgil calls it a sea ; and as it is at the head of the Gulf 
of Venice, the Italians novv call it, La Madre del Mare : as if 
they thought all that sea was supplied from it. 

* 2 Virgil very properly makes Antenor pass the Timavus ; 
it was the boundary of the Veneti, as we are told by Strabo : 
" Quae trans Padum sunt Veneti incolunt et Histri, usque ad 
" Polam ;" and more expressly, that the Timavus was the 
boundary between the Histri and Veneti ; " Post Timavum 
" Histrorum est ora maritima usque ad Polam." — And in ano- 
ther place he says ; " Diomedi in Venetis apud Timavum 

" honores et templum fuisse constitutum." Livy describes 

very well the country of the Veneti, when he says ; " Venetos 

" sinum circumcolere Maris Hadriatici." Lib. V. " In 

" ipso autem intimo sinus Adriatici, Timavum est Diomedis 
" templum memorabile. Habet enim portum, et elegantem 
" lucum, et fontes septem potabilis aquae statim in mare alto 
" et lato excidentes amne. Polybius dicit incolas locum hunc 
«« Fontem et Matrem Maris appellare." Strabo, lib. V. 

Ver. 267—278. 

'« Bellum ingens geret Italia, populosque feroces 
" Contundet, moresque viris et moenia ponet : 
" t Tertia dum Latio regnantem viderit aestas, 
" Ternaque transierint Rutulis hiberna subactis. 
" At puer Ascanius, cui nunc cognomen Iiilo 
" Additur, (Ilus erat, dum res stetit Ilia regno) 
" *t* Triginta magnos volvendis mensibus orbes 
" Imperio explebit, regnumque ab sede Lavini 
«« Transferet, et Longam multa vi muniet Albam. 
" Hic jam + tercentum totos regnabitur annos 
" Gente sub Hectorea, donec regina sacerdos, 
" Marte gravis, geminam partu dabit Ilia prolem." 

•f- This division of 3, 30, and 300, seems too regular for any 
history, but a fabulous one ; as the Roman was, perhaps, even 
long after this. 

Ver. 279—286. 

" Inde lupae fulvo nutricis tegmine laetus 
«* Romulus excipiet gentem, et Mavortia condet 


" Moenia, Romanosque suo de nomine dicet. 
" His ego nec nietas rerum, nec tempora pono : 
" Imperium sine fine dedi. Quin aspera Juno, 
" Quae mare nunc terrasque metu caelumque fatigat, 
" Consilia in melius referet; mecumque fovebit 
" Romanos rerum dominos, gentemque togatam." 

t The statue of Juno Regina was brought from Veii to Rome; 
and fixed in a temple built to lier on the Aventine Hill; about 
the year 359, U. C. Livy, lib. V. § xxi. etc. Plutarch, in 
Camillo, seems to think, that she favoured the Romans at least 
from that time. Others make it much later. " Bello Punico 
" secundo, ut ait Ennius, placata Juno coeperit favere Ro- 
" manis." Serv. in loc. 

" * Julius, a magno demissum nomen Ililo. 

* " Iiilum eundem (scil. Aeneae et Creusae filium) Julia 
" gens auctorem nominis sui nuncupat." Liv. lib. I. 

Ver. 298—300. 

" Claudentur Belli portae : Furor impius intus 
" Saeva sedens super arma, et centum vinctus * ahenis 
" Post tergum nodis, fremet horridus ore cruento." 

t This seems to have been copied from some picture. Junius 
quotes Servius on this place for a picture of Bellum, and Furor, 
as here described ; which hung in the entrance of Augustus"» 
Forum, lib. II. c. viii. § x. 

Virgil calls it Furor, or the party that opposed tlie Caesarean 
line, with the severity of one that had listed himself on the 
other side. 

* Ruaeus in his note says ; " Alludit, juxta Turnebum, ad 
" imaginem Belli,*hoc habitu pictam ab Apelle, et ab Augusto 
" dedicatam in foro suo ; utest apud Plin. lib. XXXV. x. Sed 
" nondum hoc tempore Forum dedicatum crat." On the con- 
trary, I should think, that this was a just observation of Turne- 
bus, and that the objection made to it is idle ; for notwith- 
standing that Augustus had not yet dedicated his Forum when 
Virgil wrote this, yet it Avas sufficient, if the picture was then 
in Rome : for its being placed afterwards in a solemn manner 
by Augustus in his Forum, was a plain proof of his value for 
the piece ; and VirgiFs allusion to it in this place was a com- 
pliment to Augustus's taste. The passage in Pliny is thus. 
Speaking of the famous picturesby Apelles renowned in several 
places, he adds : " Romae Castorem et Pollucem cum Victoria 
*' et Alexandro Magno mirantur : item Belli imaginem, restrictis 



" a tergo manibus ; Alexandro in curru triumphante. Quas 
" utrasque tabulas Divus Augustus in Fori sui partibus cele- 
" berrimis dicaverat." 

Ver. 318— 321. 

" Cui mater media sese tulit obvia sylva, 
" Virginis os habitumque gerens, et virginis arma 
" Spartanae : vel qualis equos Threissa fatigat 
" Harpalyce, volucremque fuga, prevertitur t Hebrum." 

•J* Mons. Huet thinks it should be Eurum : See his reason$, 
Huetiana, § 64. which seem to be approved of by Ruaeus. 

Ver. 406—409. 

" Dixit : et -J- avertens rosea. cervice refulsit, 
" Ambrosiaeque comae divinum vertice odorem 
" Spiravere : pedes vestis defluxit ad imos, 
" Et vera incessu patuit Dea." 

•J- Here are four signs of a divinity : 

1. That beautiful Rubor in the Carnazione of Venus ; ex- 
pressed by Apelles, and described by Cicero (De Nat. Deor. 
lib. I. p. 16. Ed. Ald.) 

2. A fine Smell proceeding from them. 

3. The Vest of Dignity, down the feet. And, 

4. A Motion, not like that of mortals. 
There were several others : 

" Divini signa decoris, 

" Ardentesque notate oculos ; qui spiritus illi ; 
" Qui voltus, vocisque sonus, vel gressus eunti." 

Aen. V. 650. 

It is to this Odour of Sanctity , perhaps, that Virgil refers in his 
IVth Georgic, ver. 415 ; and Ovid certainly in his Fasti ; 

" Tenues secessit in auras : 

" Mansit odor ; posses scire fuisse Deam." 

Other signals : 

" Os humerosque Deo similis : namque ipsa decoram 
" Caesariem gnato genetrix, lumenque juventae 
" Purpureum, et laetos oculis afflarat honores." 

Aen. I. ver. 591. 

~ — - " Ego, quae Divum incedo regina." Ver. 46. 

" Non ambulamus, sed incedimus," says Seneca. 


Stukely says, the walking of the Gods is described by the 
antients as a swift, smooth, gliding motion ; like the motions of 
a serpent. Heliodorus speaks of tlie wavy motions of the Gods, 
not by opening their feet, but with a certain aerial force. 
Sanchoniathon (in Eusebio, p. e. I. 7.) imagines that the serpent 
performs its motion by its spirit, and not by corporeal organs: 
and Pherecydes Syrus, where he says, the Gods have snakes' 
feet, means that their motion was smooth and sweeping, without 
the alternate use of legs : It was called, Incessus. — Stukely, 
Abury. p. 1. 57. 

Virgil, describing the motion of a serpent, says, it was 
" Attactu nullo," Aen. VII. 354. 

Ver. 450—453. 

M Hic templum Junoni ingens Sidonia Dido 
u Condebat, donis opulentum et numine Divae : 
" Aerea cui gradibus surgebant limina -f*, nexaeque 
" Aere trabes : foribus cardo stridebat ahenis." 

-f- This was not uncommon in the temples of the antients. 
The doors to the Rotonda at Rome are covered with brass, and 
turn on brass hinges. The Fortico was covered with the same * 
formerly ; and it rested on brass beams, fastened with vast nails 
of the same metal. There is one of these very nails, which I 
have seen in the Great Duke's gallery, so large that it weighs 
46 pounds. 

* " Prisci limina etiain ac valvas ex aere in templis facti- 

" tavere." Plin. lib. XXXIV. c. iii. The passage above 

was certainly intended as a compliment to Agrippa; who, in 
his third Consulship, that is, in the time that Virgil was writing 
his Aeneis, finished the Pantheon, and beautified itin the manner 
as Virgil here describes the temple of Juno. The brass doors 
are stili there. The " trabes nexae aere," Nardini assures us, 
were likewise remaining in his time : " I travi pur di bronzo 
" maestrevolmente fatti ciascheduuo con tre grosse tavole da 
" chiodi pur di bronzo connesse si son veduti a nostro tempo ; 
" finche Urbano VIII. 1' anno 1627. le levo, per farne all' altar 
" maggiore della chiesa di S. Pietro colonne, et a Castel S. 
" Angelo artiglerie, ponendove in loro luogo travi di legno." 

See Nardini, lib. VI. c. xvi. Nardini likewise says ; " Affer- 

" mano il Fulvio ed il Marliano haver veduto scoperto 1'antico 
" piano avanti al tempio, da cui tanto si saliva quanto ora si 
" scende. 

" Aerea cui gradibus surgebant limina." 

Desgodetz, in his Edifices antiques de Rome, Planche 13, 
gives us an elevation of one of the brass doors of the Pantheon, 



with its pilaster and corniche (or limen), which, as well as the 
doors and pilasters, was formerly covered with brass, as Des- 
godetz assures us, Planche 5. " La fermeture de la porte est 
" de bronze Corinthien applique sur du bois ; les bases et les 
" chapiteaux des pilastres et la corniche de cette fermeture qui 
" etoient aussi de bronze ont ete emportes, et il ne reste plus 
" que le bois qui etoit dessous ; le treillis qui est par le haut 
" est de bronze fondu, de 1'epaisseur d'un pouce." 

Desgodetz supposes likewise verv justly, that the Pediment of 
the Portico was faced with brass in bas-relief : " Dans le Timpan 
" de dessous on voit plusieurs trous, qui font conjecturer qu'il 
" y avoit un bas-relief' de bronze attache dans ces trous par des 
" erampons." And further he says : " Les inscriptions qui sont 
" dans la frize et dans les bandes de Parchitrave sont gravees 
" dans le marbre, en sorte qu'il y a lieu de croire que dans ces 
".graveures il y avoit des lettres de bronze, parceque les gra- 
" veures sont percees fort avant en quelques endroits, comme 
" pour y sceller les crampons qui tenoient les lettres attachees." 
See Planche 3. 

Ver. 468, 469. 

" Animum pictura pascit inani, 

u Multa gemens * ; largoque humectat flumine vultum." 

* We shall find (as Mr. Dryden observes, in his Dedication 
to the Aeneis), that the tears of Aeneas were always on a laud- 
able occasion. 

Ver. 494—497. 
" Ducit Amazonidum lunatis agmina peltis 
" Penthesilea furens, mediisque in millibus ardet; 
'* Aurea subnectens * exertae cingula mammae 
• Bellatrix, audetque viris concurrere virgo." 

* Q. whether Exerta signifies cut off, as is commonly under- 
stood? or not rather, at liberty, being naked and exposed. 
Claudian, in his Paneg. de Consulatu Prob. et Olyb. describing 
Rome in the habit of an Amazon, says : 

" Dextrum nuda latus, niveos exerta lacertos, 
" Audacem retegit mammam.' 1 

The Poet here fully represents the right side, particularly the 
breast, naked and exposed; and though he endeavours so much 
to vary his expressions, vet he savs nothingdirectlv of the breast 
being cut off. He applies the word Exerta to the Lacerti, 
which cannot be supposed to be cut off. He must therefore 
mean only, " having the right arm at liberty, and prepared fcr 
" action." Had tlie breast been reallv cut off, it is not pro- 
bable that a poet, who was always so fond of expatiating, would 
have lost an opportunity of enlarging on such a topic. 


+ In all tlie figures of Amazons by the antient artists that 
I have ever observed (and I have observed a great number in 
statues, reliefs, gems, and medals), I never saw any one that had 
either breast cut oft*. Tliere is one generally naked (or exerted), 
and the other is generally covered with part of the thin vest, 
that falls down toward their knees. Their legs are naked; and 
they are generally represented with a bow or ax, and the moony- 
shield; just as they are described by Virgil, and the other Ro- 
man poets: 

" At medias inter caedes exultat Amazon, 
" Unum exerta latus pugnae, pharetrata Camilla; 
" Et nunc lenta manu surgens hastilia pensat, 
" Nunc validam dextra rapit indefessa bipennem: 
" Aureus ex humero sonat arcus et arma Dianae." 

Aen. XI. 652. 

" Nihil ipsa neque aurae, 

" Nec sonitus memor, aut venientis ab aethere teli : 

" Hasta sub exertam donec perlata papillam 

" Haesit." Aen.XI. 803. 

" Amazonidum nudatis bellica mammis 

" Turba." Prop. lib. III. El. xiv. 

" Felix Hippolyte nuda tulit arma papilla." 

Id. lib. IV. El. iii. 

" Inde Lycen ferit ad confine papillae ; 

" Inde Thoen, qua pelta vacat." Flac. VI. 375. 

Ver. 534—537. 

" Est locus, Hesperiam Graii cognomine dicunt: 
" Terra antiqua, potens armis atque ubere glebae: 
" Oenotrii * coluere viri ; nunc fama, minores 
" Italiam dixisse, ducis de nomine, gentem." 

* " Prisci Oenotriam vocarunt Italiam, quicquid terrae a 
" Siculo freto usque ad sinum Tarentinum et Posidoniatem ten- 
" dit; quod nomen deinde ita obtinuit, ut usque ad Alpium 

" radices proferretur. Probabile est eos, qui primum Itali 

" sunt appellati, ob res secundas nomen cum finitimis commu- 
" nicasse; idque deinde ita auctum, tantisper dum ad Romanos 
" summa rerum pervenit." Strabo, lib. V. initio. 

Ver. 707— 7] 0. 
" Quinquaginta intus *' famulae, quibus ordine * 8 longo 
" Cura penum struere, et flammis adolere Penates: 
" Centum aliae, totidemque pares aetate ministri, 
" Qui dapibus mensas onerent et pocula ponant. 1 ' 


*' Housekeepers, and their attendants ; it appearing by a 
discourse in A. Gellius on the word Penus, that it signified all 
sorts of provision laid up in store for a family either for eating 
or drinking. Lib. IV. c. i. 

** It is disputed in the same place whether this ought to be 
read longo to agree with Ordine, or longam to agree with 
Penum : " Meministi enim credo quaeri solitum quid Virgilius 
" dixerit? Penum instruere, vel longam, vel longo ordine. 
" Utrumque enim profecto scis legi solitum." Gellius, ibid. — If 
longam is thetrue reading, it means a great stock, or magazines 
to serve a great while : for we find by the same author, that 
the daily provisions for the table did not properly come under 
the word Penus. " Nam quae ad edendum bibendumque in 
" dies singulos prandii aut coenae causa parantur, Penus non 
" sunt ; sed ea potius quae hujusce generis, longae usionis gra- 
" tia, contrahuntur et reconduntur. 1 ' Gellius, ibid. 

Ver. 744, 745. 
Cithara f crinitus Iopas 

" Personat aurata."- 

•f* The bards of old were in the highest esteem. They sang 
to their golden harps, at the feasts of kings and princes ; were 
usuallv drest (among the Asiatics at least) in a long embroi- 
dered robe, which reached the ground ; and had their hair 
finely dressed out, and flowing all down their shoulders. This 
latter therefore was one of their known characteristics ; and 
Virgil, by his giving the epithet of Crinitus to Iopas on this 
occasion, meant (in his usual short v\ ay) to intimate all the finery 
and dignity of his appearance. — Had the author of a piece pub- 
lished a few vears ago, (under a name that would make every 
body fond of reading it) been aware of this, methinks he could 
never have called Crinitus here, " an epithet so wholly foreign 
" to the purpose." See Dis. on antient and modern learning, 
by Mr. Addison, p. 6. 

Ver. 760. 
" Te jam * septima portat 

" Omnibus errantem terris et fluctibus aestas." 

* The beginning of the seventh year, or rather summer. — 
This appears from Aen. III. ver. 8. 

Vix prima inceperat aestas, 

" Et pater Anchises dare fatis vela jubebat." 




Ver. 8, 9. 

Et jam * nox humida caelo 

M Praecipitat, suadentque cadentia sidera somnos." 

* If the interpretation of Ruaeus is right, that Aeneas does 
not begin his story till towards break of dav (die proxime im- 
minente), then, as it is long, and takes up the two following 
books, it could not possibly be finished till broad day ; whicn 
is utterly inconsistent with the beginning of the IVth book. 

Ver. 21—24. 

" Est in conspectu * Tenedos, notissima fama 
" Insula ; dives opum, Priami dum regna manebant: 
" Nunc tantum sinus, et statio malefida carinis. 
M Huc se profecti deserto in littore condunt." 

* M The island Tenedos is about four or five miles from the 
shcre of Asia; is about twenty miles in circuit; and hath a town 
and castle, which lieth on the north end of it, regarding the 
promontory of Sigeum towards the east. Sir G. Wheeler, 
p. 66. 

Ver. 76—80. 

M *f* Ille haec, deposita tandem formidine, fatur: 
" Cuncta equidem tibi, Rex, fuerint quaecunque, fatebor 
M Vera, inquit; neque me Argolica de gente negabo; 
" Hoc primum; nec, si miserum fortuna * Sinonem 
" Finxit, vanum etiam mendacemque improba finget." 

i- This verse is omitted in the old Florentine manuscript ; and 
has been added (with a different ink, and another hand) at the 
bottom of the page. Whoever added it seems to have over- 
looked the Inquit, in the very next line but one. 

* Sinon was no inconsiderable person ; a relation of the inge- 
nious Palamedes, ver. 86 ; and so ingenicus himself as to have 
been the inventor of the watch-tower, built during the time of 
the siege of Troy. " Specularum significationem Trojano bello 
" invenit Sinon." Plin. lib. VII. c. lvi. 

Ver. 152—157. 

" Ille dolis instructus et arte Pelasga 

" Sustulit exutas vinclis ad sidera palmas. 



" Vos, aeterni ignes, et non violabile * vestrum 
" Testor numen, ait : vos arae ensesque nefandi, 
" Quos fugi; vittaeque Deum, quas hostia gessi: 
" Fas mihi Graiorum sacrata resolvere jura." 

* Markland reads here, Vestae ; see his notes on Statius, 
Sylv. I. ver. 35 ; and concludes his note with this just observa- 
lion: " Vide autem quam artificiose Sinonem inducit Virgilius 
" ingredientem orationem ejus a mentione et invocatione Ves- 
" tae; ut scilicet gratiam Trojanorum captaret: Vesta enim ab 
" iis maxime colebatur." 

Ver.201, 202. 

" * Laocoon, ductus Neptuno sorte sacerdos, 
" Solemnes taurum ingentem mactabat ad aras. x. r. X. 

* This story of Laocoon, so elegantly described by Virgil, 
alludes to a famous Grecian statue, which was esteemed one of 
the greatest master-pieces of the antient sculpture ; and which 
was undoubtedly well known to the Romans in Virgil's time, if 
not alreadv brought thither. I know it is disputed by the vir- 
tuosi whether the statue was copied from Virgil, or Virgil's 
description taken from the statue. The latter is pretty mani- 
fest : For Pliny tells us expressly, lib. XXXVI. c. v. that this 
group was made by three eminent artists together, viz. Age- 
sander, Polydorus, and Athenodorus : And, lib. XXXIV. c. 
viii. though he does not tell the time when they all lived, yet 
he tells us that Athenodorus was one of the scholars of Poly- 
cletus, who flourished about the 87th Olympiad, or near the 
320th vear of Rome, between the times of Phidias and Praxi- 
teles : therefore we must suppose that this group was made near 
400 years before Virgil wrote this. Pliny likewise in the same 
chapter tells us, that after the 120th Olympiad, this art de- 
clined : and though it revived again about the 155th, yet it 
liever arrived to its former glory. And therefore, as this 
group was celebrated as one of the best pieces that ever was 
made, we may suppose reasonably that it was the work of the 
age when this art was in its greatest perfection. That this is 
the same statue, which is still preserved at the Belvidere in the 
Vatican, cannot be doubted ; the whole group being of one 
piece of marble as Pliny describes it, and being found in or 
near the place where he says it stood in liis time. Speaking of 
the works of the most famous statuaries, he savs : " Multorum 
" obscurior fama est, quorundam claritati in operibus eximiis ob- 
" stante numero artificum; quoniam nec unus occupat gloriam, 
" nec plures pariter nuncupari possunt. Sicut in Laocoonte, qui 
" est in Titi Imperatorisdomo, opus omnibus et picturae et sta- 
" turaiae artis praeferendum. Ex uno lapide eum et libercs 
'• draconumque mirabiles nexus de consilii sententia. fecere 


" summi artinces, Agesaner et Polydorus et Athenodorus Rho- 
" dii.' 1 Lib. XXXVI. c. v. — Doimtus, speaking of the baths 
of Titus, says : " In vineis locis statuam Laocoontis laudatam 
" a Plinio, conservataraque in hortis Vaticani Pontificiis, in- 
" ventam viderunt tempora vix inchoata prioris seculi." Lib. 

III. c. x. And Nardini eonlirms the saine : " La statua bel- 

" lissima del Laocoonte con duoi figli attorniati da serpi retro- 
" vata nel tempo di Leone X. presso a S. Lucia in Selce, e le 
" Sette Sale, e trasportata lri Belvedere, dove hoggi sta." 

Lib. III. c. x. Though it cannot well be doubted but Virgil 

had the famous statue of Laocoon in view when he wrote this 
story, yet it is observed that he has varied from it in many par- 
ticulars ; and that, perhaps, for the following reason. ln the 
statue the father and sons are represented entangled by the ser- 
pents in one group ; which the statuaries were under a neces- 
sity of doing, because they could not represent succession of 
actions in the same stone : but the Poet not being under the 
same restriction, relates the story as it may more naturally be 
supposed to have happened. He first makes the serpents seize 
the children, each of them one ; and when they had despatched 
them, then they seize the father coming to their assistance. A 
less judicious author would probably have endeavoured to have 
followed the statue as servilely as possible ; but Virgil chose 
rather to copy the most masterly strokes of it ; the serpents 
twisting themselves about and entangling their bodies; Laocoon 
" tendentem manibus divellere nodos," and " clamores hor- 
" rendos ad sidera tollentem:" and where it.was proper, he 
varies from the original. 

"Y As statuary is confined to one single point of time, in the 
famous group of the Laocoon, in the Vatican, you see the 
serpents killing him and his two sons together. Poetry has 
a larger scope ; and can describe each step of any action dis- 
tinctly. Virgil therefore, in his descriptiOn of the same thing, 
gives the whole course of it, and every part of it successively. 

You first see the serpents on the sea ; then on the shore ; 

then killing the sons of Laocoon ; and lastly killing Laocoon 
himself. This must make that figure and his description differ 
in most particulars ; and indeed there is scarce any thing in 
which they agree, except the attitude of Laocoon himself, and 
the air of his head : in which Virgil seems to have copied that 
statue very strongly. 

Ver. 264. 

" Primusque Machaon, 

" Et Menelaus ; et, ipse doli fabricator, * Epeus." 

* That there was a tradition in Italy, that Epeus was the 
builder of the Trojan horse, is manifest from Justin : " Meta- 


" pontini in templo Minervae ferramenta qmbus Epeus, a quo 
" conditi sunt, Equum Trojanum fabricavit, ostentant." Lib. 

XX. c. ii. Pliny seems to speak of this horse, as if it was 

the same with the battering-ram : " Equum, qui nunc Aries 
" appellatur, in muralibus machinis Epeum ad Trojam inve- 
" nisse dicunt." Nat. Hist. VII. 56. 

Ver. 293—297. 

" *■ Sacra, suosque tibi commendat Troja Penatea : 
" Hos cape fatorum comites: his moenia quaere, 
" Magna pererrato statues quae denique ponto. 
" Sic ait, et manibus vittas, Vestamque potentem, 
" Aeternumque adytis effert penetraiibus ignem." 

* Dryden, in his dedication to the Aeneis, remarks very 
judiciously, that a compliment is here paid to Augustus ; and 
that Virgil plainly touches at the office of high-priesthood with 
which Augustus was invested ; and which made his person 
more sacred and inviolable, than even the Tribunitial power : 
and that it was not for nothing that this most judicious Poet 
made that office vacant by the death of Pantheus, ver. 429, for 
his hero to succeed in it. 

Ver. 351. 

" Excessere omnes adytis * arisque relictis 
" Dii, quibus imperium hoc steterat." 

* This was a general superstitious thought among the 
old Heathens. — See Curtius, lib. IV. of Apollo's preparing 
to quit the Tvrians. — See also Macrob. Sat. lib. III. c. ix.— • 
Plin. lib. XXVIII. c. ii.— Liv. lib. V. 

Ver. 396—401. 

" Vadimus immixti Danais, haud numine nostro : 
" Multaque per caecam congressi praelia noctem 
" Conserimus, multos Danaiim demittimus Orco. 
" Diffugiunt alii ad naves, et littora cursu 
" Fida petunt: pars ingentem formidine turpi 
" Scandunt * rursus equum, et nota conduntur in alvo." 

* This is more outre than any thing I know of in all the 
Aeneid. It may be a pretty thought, but it would perhaps 
better become Lucan than the p-ravitv of Viroil. After the 
discovery of the trick, the horse was a very improper place to 
hide in ; but indeed Virgil represents them seized, " formidine 
" turpi ;" and in such a case people seldom know what they do. 

Ver.416— 418. 
" Adversi rupto ceu quondam turbine venti 


" Confligunt, Zephyrusque Notusque, et laetus Eois 
" Eurus t equis." 

t The author of Polymetis suspects, from this passage, that 
Eurus might be sometimes represented by the antient artists, 
either on horseback, or perhaps in a chariot whirling through 
theair: The Roman poets, says he, sometimes using the ex- 
pression in equis, to signify a person's being in a chariot ; ancl 
so may possibly use Equitare for the same. Flaccus uses an 
expression of another wind (the north), which seems to imply 
his being in a chariot : 

" Fundunt se carcere laeti 

" Thraces equi ; Zephyrusque." Arg. I. ver. 611. 

See Pol. XIII. 10. Horace uses Equitavit of Eurus: 

" Dirus per urbes Afer ut Italas, 

" Ceu flamma per taedas, vel Eurus 
" Per Siculas equitavit undas." 

Lib. IV. Od. iv. ver. 44. 

Ver. 431—436. 

" Iliaci cineres, et flamma extrema meorum, 
" Testor, in occasu vestro, nec tela, nec ullas 
" Vitavisse vices Danaiim ; et, si fata fuissent 
" Ut caderem, meruisse manu. Divellimur inde, 
" Iphitus et Pelias mecum : quorum Iphitus aevo 
" Jam gravior *, Pelias et vulnere tardus Ulyssei." 

* These circumstances are added very properly. That Dido 
might not suspect that Aeneas deserted his friends, who were 
engaged in the same party with him, and ran away, he says : 

" Si fata fuissent 

" Ut caderem, meruisse manu." 

And to prove that it was purely Fate or Providence which pro- 
tected him, he adds, that the two friends preserved with him 
were Iphitus and Pelias; the one very old, the other lame ; 
persons very unlikely to escape by flight. We must farther ob- 
serve, .that Divellimur expresses violence, and by it Aeneas 
declares that, after the loss many friends, it was with 
difficulty and reluctance that he was obliged to retire. " Di- 
" vellimur inde." 

Ver. 567. 

" -f* Jamque adeo super unus eram," etc. 

*f* All this passage (from " Jamque adeo super unus eram," 
to " furiata mente ferebar," ver. 588.) is omitted in the Floren- 


tine manuscript ; and no manner of notice taken of it in the 

* There is a little treatise written by one Franciscus Cam- 
panus in the year 1536, and printed at Milan 1540, relating to 
the 22 disputed verses here, " Jamque adeo super unus eram," 
etc. where Aeneas tells Dido, that whilst Troy was in flames 
he discovered Helen at the altar of Vesta ; and was so far en- 
ra^ed against her, that in his passion he had thoughts of killing 
her, had he not been prevented by Venus. These verses are 
left out of many manuscripts and eclitions of Virgil ; and it is 
pretended they were struck out by Tucca and Varus, as being 
inconsistent with the account which Deiphobus gives of Helen 
in the Vlth book. 

" Me fata mea et scelus exitiale Lacaenae 

" His mersere malis," etc. 

This author shews plainly, that by leaving out those 22 verses, 
the sense and connexion of that part of the poem must utterly 
be destroyed ; and thinks it would be more pardonable tostrike 
out the speech of Deiphobus in the Vlth, than those verses in 
the Ild, supposing it necessary to strike out either : but he ap- 
prehends no necessity of doing either ; both passages, as he 
thinks, being reconcileable. 

The account Aeneas gives of Helen being real according to the 
situation in which he says he himself saw her ; and the account 
Deiphobus gives of her only conjectural, and what he had good 
reason to suspect, but the truth of which he could not be sure 
of, being, as he himself declares, fast asleep when the enemy 
broke in upon him. 

Ver. 681—693. 
: ' Manusinter moestorumque ora parentum, 

" Ecce levis summo de vertice visus Iiili 

" Fundere lumen apex f, tactuque innoxia molles, 

" Lambere flamma comas, et circum tempora pasci. 

" Nos pavidi trepidare metu, crinemque flagrantem 

" Excutere, et sanctos restinguere fontibus ignes. 

" At pater Anchises oculos ad sidera laetus 

" Extulit, et caelo f* palmas cum voce tetendit. 

" Jupiter omnipotens, precibus si flecteris ullis, 
" Aspice nos, hoc tantum : et, si pietate meremur, 
" Da deinde auxilium, pater, atque haec omina firma. 
" Vix ea fatus erat senior, subitoque fragore 
" Intonuit * laevum." 

t 1 This is not a poetical ornament, any more than the account 
of the light seen on Lavinia's hair (Aen. VII. 71 — 101. posth.) 


— It was looked on as a great omen, and even to portend the 
regal dignity to those on whom it appeared. Livy records a 
like phaenomenon happening to Servius Tullius, while yet a 
boy in Tarquinius Priscus's family, (lib. I. §39. See ib. | 41.) 
— " Hominum quoque capita vespertinis horis magno praesagio 
" circumfulgent :" Pliny, of the lambent lights called Castor and 
Pollux, lib. II. c. xxxvi. 

+ 2 This was an attitude used by the Romans of old when they 
prayed, and is said to be used among the Africans to this day. 
Virgil repeats it in other places. 

" Duplices tendens ad sidera palmas, 

" Talia voce refert." Aen. I. 97. 

" Ad caelum tendens ardentia luinina frustra; 
" Lumina, nam teneras arcebant vincula palmas." 

Ib. II. 40(3. of Cassandra. 

Amens animi, et rumore accensus amaro 

" Dicitur ante aras, media inter numina Diviim, 
" Multa Jovem manibus supplex orasse supinis." 

Ib. IV. 205. oflarbas. 

And so Horace, to his servant in the country : 

" Caelo supinas si tuleris manus, 

" Nascente luna, rustica Phidile," etc 

Lib. III. Od. xxiii. 

* Thunder on the left hand was a fortunate and confirming 
omen. When the prophet Amphiaraus in Statius, by order of 
Adrastus king of Argos, consults the heavens, whether tlie peo- 
ple of Argos ought to make war with Thebes in favour of Poly- 
nices against his brother Eteocles, or not: He prays to Jupiter, 
that, if they were to march on, and attack Thebes, he would 
thunder on the left ; but if they ought to stay at home, he would 
then give a signal to the right. 

" Si datur, et duris sedet haec sententia Parcis 
" Solvere Echionias Lernaea cuspide portas; 

" Signa feras, laevusque tones. 

" Si prohibes, hic necte moras; dextrisque profundum 

" Alitibus praetexe diem." 

Statius, Theb. lib. III. 491. 

Ver. 707—710. 
" Age, chare pater, cervici imponere nostrae : 

" Ipse * subibo humeris : nec me labor iste gravabit 
" Quo res cunque cadent, unum et commune periclum 
" Una salus ambobus erit." 



* " Qualis Aeneas patrem gestans pingitur, reverendus et 

hostibus." Appian. lib. IV. 986. + There is a figure of 

this in Polyraetis, p. 64. 

Ver. 745, 746. 

" * Quem non incusavi amens hominumque Deorumque ? 
" Aut quid in eversa vidi crudelius urbe?" 

* Mr. Dryden, very justly, takes notice of the address of 
Virgil, in speaking of the loss of Creiisa here. " It was not for 
" nothing," says he, " that this passage was related with all 
" these tender circumstances : Aeneas told it, Dido heard it." 
Dedication to his Transl. of Virgil. 


Vee. 4—7. 

" Diversa exilia, et *' desertas quaerere terras, 
" Auguriis agimur Divum: classemque sub ipsa 
" Antandro, et Phrygiae molimur montibus Idae: 
" * a Incerti quo fata ferant; ubi sistere detur." 

& 1 Father Catrou has here altered the text, and reads Diver- 
sas; and thinks the repetition a beauty: but certainly there is 
no reason for the alteration ; Desertae, or Vacuae terrae, were 
the most proper to plant colonies in, and exiles to look for : 
and one may observe that Virgil uses the same word Deserta 
(ver. 112. " Desertaque litore Crete") where it is particularly 
urged as an inducement to go and settle in Crete. 

* 2 Ruaeus has the following note on this passage : " Tamen 
" Creiisa monuerat, Aen. II. 781. in Hesperia ad ripas Tybris 
" sedes esse futuras. Ergo, vel non credidit inani Creiisae si- 
" mulacro; vel illud Creiisae vaticinium ex iis est locis, quos 

" Virgilius emendare debuisset." Virgil, a few verses after 

(viz. 186.), gives a good reason why Aeneas did not entirely de- 
pend upon what was told him bv Creiisa ; when he makes An- 
chises, on the like occasion, (viz.) on reflecting on Cassandra's 
prophecies, cry out, 

" Quis ad Hesperiae venturos littora Teucros 
" Crederet?" 

See other reasons given by Father Catrou, in his remarks on this 
place: to which one may add, that this critic does not consider 


that, amor.g otlier things, Crelisa foretold " longa exilia ;" and 
therefore, supposing Aeneas gave entire credit to the vision, he 
could not expect to find an immediate settlement in Italy on his 
first landing, without takiug proper measures to effect it. And 
if so, in what country could he hope to iind the first reception 
and assistance sooner, than Thrace ? " Hospitium antiquum 
" Trojae." 

Ver. 11 — 18. 

" *' Feror exul inaltum, 

" Cum sociis, natoque, Penatibus, et magnis Dis. 
" Terra procul vastis colitur Mavortia campis, 
" Thraces arant, acri quondam regnata Lycurgo : 
" Hospitium antiquum Trojae, sociique Penates, 
" Dum fortuna fuit. *' Feror huc, et litore curvo 
" * 2 Moenia prima loco, fatis ingressus * 3 iniquis ; 
" Aeneadasque meo nomen de nomine fingo." 

*' Feror, twice repeated here. Observe the expression. He 
seems to be forced in by fate, not to go by choice : yet " Hos- 
" pitium antiquum" was reason sufficient for going thither. 

* 2 The city of Aenos ; where Caepio, Cato's brother, died, 
and was there buried by him ; and a stately monument of 
Thasian Marble erected over him : Plutarch, life of Cato the 
younger. It is now called Eno. See Ruaeus. 

* 3 The Poet seems here, by a spirit of prophecy, to foretel 
that this country would be fatal to the descendants of Aeneas ; 
as Constantinople afterwards proved. 

Ver. 22—29. 

" f Forte fuit juxta tumulus, quo cornea summo 
" Virgulta, et densis hastilibus horrida myrtus. 
" Accessi, viridemque ab humo convellere sylvam 
" Conatus, ramis tegerem ut frondentibus aras, 
" Horrendum et dictu video miserabile monstrum. 
" Nam, quae prima solo ruptis radicibus arbos 
" Vellitur, huic atro liquuntur sanguine guttae, 
" Et terram tabo maculant," etc. 

t The only way to judge truly of the antients, in points 
that are purely antient, is to imagine ourselves in their places ; 
in the same circumstances, and with the same sort of ideas they 
had. As we can very seldom do this, we are very often mis- 
taken about them. 

I can't say that I approve this passage ; but is not the fault 
in myself ? Would it have shocked me, had I been born a 
Roman, in the time of Augustus, and had read it soon after the 
Aeneid was published ? 

N 2 


They stocked every thing with Divinities and Intelligences : 
there was not a river, a lake, a grot, or a grove, without 
them. These were not poetical ornaments ; but the real object 
of the belief and religion of the common people ; and the pro- 
fessed religion of the great. 

When they believed every grove and every tuft of trees to 
have some particular divinities belonging to it ; it was but one 
step farther to entertain the notion of Intelligences vitally an- 
nexed to a tree, which was their received notion of the Hama- 
dryades. (See Bayle, Art. Hamad.) 

Those stories of Daphne, Phaeton's sisters, and the like, 
were known stories too; and tolerably well received by the 
most believing part of mankind, the vulgar. 

There is even an Embassador in Livy, that treats a conse- 
crated tree in general as an intelligent being, and as a Deity. 
" Tum ex legatis unus abiens ; Et haec (inquit) sacrata quer- 
" cus, et quicquid Deorum est, audiant foedus a vobis ruptum." 
Lib. III. § xxv. 

Ver. 73—77. 

" Sacra mari colitur medio gratissima tellus 
" Nereidum matri et Neptuno Aegeo: 
" Quam pius Arcetinens oras et littora circum 
" EiTantem, * Mycone celsa Gyaroque revinxit; 
" Immotamque coli dedit, et contemnere ventos." 

m Delos being reputed the birth-place of Apollo, the cir- 
cumjacent islands (therefore called the Cyclades), to make it 
the more famous, sent thither by public order priests, sacri- 
fices, etc. instituting there public solemnities: Sir G. Wheeler, 
p. 53. He was on the spot: and tells us, that the island is but 
small, not exceeding five or six miles about ; that it hath the 
island Rheucia westward, from which it is parted by a channel 
of about half a mile over ; the southern parts of Mycone east; 
and the channel between Mycone and Tino to the north. It is 
now utterly uninhabited ; but the ruins of its former glory 
still remaining, of which Sir George gives a description, with 
a draught of the island. He says, the island lieth low in re- 
spect of the circumjacent isles, which are beyond proportion 
higher, p. 58. 

By Mycone and Gyarus, the Poet probably means all the 
Cyclades, though he najmes only two instead of the whole. He 
adds, Celsa, with respect to what is observed above by Sir 
George Wheeler. — Mycone is not so far distant from Delos, as 
Ferrarius in his Dictionary assureth; it being but four miles at 
the most. It mav have 25 or 30 miles in circumference. Sir 
G. W. p. 62. * 

Statius, in describing a storm in the Aegean sea, says : 


— " Dubiae tnotis radicibus obstant 

" Cyclades : ipsa tua Mycone Gyaroque revelli, 
• " Dele, times ; magnique fidem testaris alumni." 

Thebaid. lib. III. ver. 438. 

Ver. 94—98. 

" * Dardanidae duri, quae vos a stirpe parentum 
" Prima tulit tellus, eadem vos ubere laeto 
" Accipiet reduces : antiquam exquirite matrem. 
" Hic domus f Aeneae cunctis dominabatur oris, 
" Et nati natorum, et qui nascentur ab illis." 

* Observe, the oracle speaks to the Trojans by this name, 
not Teucri, to intimate their descent from Dardanus ; but this 
circumstance Anchises might easily overlook. 

f Homer had said long before, 

Aivsloco (3iri TgOUSGGlV U.V0C%£1 

Kai ■ttouSzs ■zjociSciJv, rot xev (AtloTrio-Qe yivcovlxt. II. T. 308. 

It was not uncommon of old, to have nations entertain pro- 
phecies of their being designed by Heaven to be masters of all 
the world. Such were pretended among the Romans, from 
the very infancy of their state ; and was confirmed on the 
building of the old Capitol ; to which Virgil alludes in another 
place : 

" Dum domus Aeneae Capitoli immobile saxum 
" Accolet, imperiumque Pater Romanus habebit." 

Aen. IX. 449. 

See this proved more at large, in Pol. III. 11. 

, Ver. 102-113. 

" Tum genitor, veterum V volvens monumenta viroruin : 
" Audite, 6 proceres, ait, et spes discite vestras. 
" Creta Jovis magni medio jacet insula ponto ; 
" Mons * 2 ldaeus ubi, et gentis cunabula nostrae: 
" Centum urbes habitant magnas, uberrima regna. 
" Maximus unde pater, si rite audita recordor, 
" Teucrus Rhaeteas primum est advectus in oras, 
" Optavitque locum regno : nondum Ilium et arces 
" Pergameae steterant ; habitabant vallibus imis. 
" Hinc mater cultrix Cybele * 3 , Corybantiaque aera, 
" Idaeumque nemus : hinc fida silentia sacris; 
" Et juncti currum dominae subiere leones." 

*' See Doctor Trapp"s note on Ruaeus's remark ou this pas- 
sage. The Doctor observes, that Ruaeus gives no answer to 


the charge: and the Doctor's answer is very short. I think, 
much more may be said in favour both of Anchises and his son. 
Anchises gives many arguments to justify his interpretation of 
the oracle ; (viz.) their origin from Crete by Teucer, from 
whom they were descended; their mount Ida; their great God- 
dess Cybele, and all the ceremonies used in her worship : all 
Cretan. Besides, for their greater encouragement to go thi- 
ther, they had reason to believe that they should find no oppo- 
sition to their settling there : 

" Fama volat pulsum regnis cessisse." Ver. 121, etc. 

Afterwards, when Anchises was convinced of his mistake, he 
acknowledges that Cassandra had often foretold that Italy was 
the country destined to them : 

'« Et saepe Hesperiam, saepe Itala regna vocare. 1 ' 

But, for his excuse, he says ; 

'« Quis ad Hesperiae venturos littora Teucros 

'« Ci-ederet? aut quem tum vates Cassandra moveret." 

Now when Anchises was so fully persuaded that all the forego- 
ing circumstances concurred evidently in favour of Crete; that 
he had not any regard to Cassandra's prophecy, nor in the least 
thought of Italv ; to what purpose should Aeneas at such a 
time advertise his father of Creusa's prophecy, in opposition 
to an oracle, that seemed so clear for Crete : or how indeed 
could he be supposed to understand a prediction, which was in 
itself very obscure ? It was this : 

'* Ad terram Hesperiam venies, ubi Lydius arva 
" Inter opima virum leni fluit agmine Tybris." 

Aen. II. 781. 

Here we must observe, she does not name Italy, but Terram 
Hesperiam, a western country ; so the Greeks called not only 
Italy but Spain too, as lying west from them ; and the same 
name might be applied by a Trojan to any country lying west 
from Troy. What follows, viz. 

" Ubi Lydius arva," etc. 

could give no light in ascertaining Italy : for the epithet Lydius 
given to Tybris required a long historical explanation, and 
Tybris was then unknown (for this was a new name given to 
the river, the old one, Aibula, being changed, as we find, 
Aen. VIII. 330.); and Aeneas himself hints in the fifth book, 
ver. 83, that this name was unknown, when, addressing himself 
to his fathei -, s ghost, he says ; 


" Non licuit fines Italos, fataliaque arva, 

" Nec tecum Ausonium, quicunque est, quaerere Tybrim.' 

The " quicunque est" seems to be adcletl on purpose to shew 
that the Tyber, as famous as it became afterwarcls, was then 
utterly unknown to them. But supposing Aeneas to have an 
imperfect idea that by Hesperia Creiisa meant Italy, we must 
allow him the same excuse as Anchises makes for himself ; 

" Quis ad Hesperiae venturos littora Teucros 
" Crederet ?" 

It was a country they were strangers to ; and therefore how 
should it enter into their heads to think of settling there ? 
When the Penates afterwards appear to Aeneas, and explain 
the oracle of Apollo expressly in favour of Italy, they describe 
it as any one would do a country before unknown : 

" Est locus, Hesperiam Graii cognomine clicunt ; 
" Terra antiqua, potens armis atque ubere glebae. 
" Oenotrii coluere viri." Ver. 163. 

and when they name Italy they mention it only as reported to 
be called by that name. 

" Nunc fama minores 

" Italiam dixisse."- 

And after this particular description of Italy by the Penates, 
yet still Aeneas was at a loss what part of the country they were 
to go to, and what course to take thither (notwith.standing 
Creiisa had named Tybris) till Hellenus afterwards informs him 
at large, ver. 381, etc. 

* 8 " In medio insulae (Cretae) qua latissima est, mons est Ida 
" altissimus omnium qui in ea sunt." Strab. lib. X. 

* 3 Strabo, speaking of the Curetes, or Corybantes, says; 
" Ingens est diversitas istarum narrationum," etc. Lib. X. 
And, a little afterwards, he adds, — " Sceptius ait, in Creta 
" honores Rheae (i. e. Cybeles) non esse in usu, neque receptos 
" ibi ritus ejus, sed in Phrygia tantum ac Troade ; qui aliter 
" affirment eos fabulam potius quam historiam tradere ; ad quam 
" rem eos fortassis nomina locorum ambigua induxerunt. Ida 
" enim mons est et Trojae et Cretae." 

Ver. 124—127. 

" Linquimus *' Ortygiae portus, pelagoque volamus 
" Bacchatamque jugis Naxon, viridemque Donysam, 
" Olearon, niveamque Paron, sparsasque per aequor 
" Cycladas, et crebris legimus freta * s consita terris." 



* J " Delos olim dicta fuit Ortygia." Strab. lib. X. 

" Delon ita appellatam prodidit Aristoteles quoniam repente 
" apparuerit enata." Plin. lib. IV. c. 12. 

* 2 The most proper word that could be used, alluding to the 

Sporades. Having mentioned the Cyclades by name, Virgil, 

for variety, expresses the latter by a periphrasis. 

Ver. 131—133! 

" Tandem antiquis Curetum allabimur oris. 

" Ergo avidus muros optatae molior urbis, 
" * Pergameamque voco." 

* Pliny reckons Pergamum amongst the cities of Crete. 
L. IV. c. xii. 

Vee. 142— 140. 

" Arebant herbae, et victum seges aegra negabat. 
" Rursus ad * oraclum Ortygiae Phoebumque remenso 
" Hortatur pater ire mari, veniamque precari : 
" Quem fessis finem rebus ferat, unde laborum 
" Tentare auxilium jubeat, quo vertere cursus." 

* This advice of Anchises was very proper : what other 
expedient could be thought of in their distress ? But yet sup- 
posing Aeneas had returned to Delos ; what must have been 
the consequence without the particular intercession of some 
Deity ? Oracles were not used to explain themselves : and 
therefore, without that, the second answer must have been as 
dubious as the first ; and Aeneas left in the same uncertainty as 
before. To avoid this difficulty, Virgil very opportunely in- 
troduces the apparition of the Penates, etc. 

Ver. 147—152. 

" Nox erat, et terris animalia somnus habebat. 
" Effigies sacrae Diviim, Phrygiique Penates, 
" Quos mecum a Troja mediisque ex ignibus urbis 
" Extuleram, visi * 2 ante oculos astare jacentis 
" In somnis, multo manifesti lumine : qua se 
" Plena per insertas fundebat Luna fenestras." 

** Plutarch, in the iife of Julius Caesar, relates a dream or 
vision of Calpurnia, Caesar's wife, the night preceding his 
murder ; which he introduces in the following manner. " As 
" Caesar was in bed with his wife, all the doors and windows of 
" the house fiew open together ; he was startled at the noise, 
" and at the light which broke into the room, and sat upon his 
'• bed, where, by the moonshine, he perceived Calpurnia fast 
" asleep," etc. Virgil was probably well acquainted with the 


story, being about twenty-seven years of age at Caesar's death. 
Jf he may be supposed to allude to some of the aforesaid cir- 
cumstances of that vision, he has very judiciously chosen only 
such as were proper to enforce the clearness of it ; (viz.) 

' Multo manifesti lumine : qua se 

11 Luna," etc. 

and has omitted the other circumstances of all the doors and 
windows of the house flying open together, and the startling at 
the noise ; which were proper preludes to the butchery of 
Caesar, but not to his story. 

** See Dr. Trapp's Translation and note on this passage. 

Ver. 163—168. 

" Est locus, Hesperiam Graii cognomine dicunt ; 
" Terra antiqua, potens armis atque ubere glebae ; 
" Oenotrii coluere viri : nunc fama minores 
" Italiam dixisse, ducis de nomine, gentem. 
" Hae nobis propriae sedes: hinc Dardanus ortus, 
" #* Iasiusque ** pater, genus a quo principe nostrum." 

*' Marianus de Etruria metropoli, asserts; " Dardani 
" fratrem Jasium, qui Cybelem uxorem duxit, in Etruriae agro 
" mansisse, atque inde petiisse Arcadiam, Samothraciam, et 
" Phrygiam, cum Curetibus et magnis Diis. Ea sacrificia anti- 
" quissima renovata demum ab Jasio Corybantis patre tradit 
" Diodorus Siculus. Homerus Odyss. V. et ipse Diodorus 
" Cererem ipsam narrant Jasio nuptam, quod Cybelem et 
" Cererem eaudem esse argumento est," etc. Marianus, cap. v. 

* 2 Some interpreters give a very strange ungrammatical con- 
struction of this place, which may be solved bv supposing that 
Virgil artfully gives the title of Pater, to signifv old Jasius, 
meaning that he lived till he was old ; and joins them verv 
lovingly together, on purpose to discredit and shew his disbelief 
of the story of Dardanus's having mnrdered Jasius, not thinkin^ 
it to their honour, or a thing to be boasted of, to be descended 
from one who was banished from his own country for the murder 
of his brother. I am the more inclined to believe that this was 
Virgil's intention, from observing that he has used the like cau- 
tion with respect to Romulus and Remus, which is almost a 
parallel case ; and though that story of Romulus's murdering 
Remus was a common tradition at Rome, Virgil never g;ives 
the least hint of it ; on the contrary he joins them both to^ether 
very honourably in two several plaees (viz.) ; 

" Hauc Remus et frater." Geor. II. ver. 533. 



and, again, Aen. I. ver. 296. 

" Remo cum fratre Quirinus." 

Ver. 172—179. 

" * Talibus attonitus visis ac voce Deorum 
" (Nec sopor illud erat ; sed coram agnoscere vultu», 
'* Velatasque comas, praesentiaque ora videbar ; 
" Tum gelidus toto manabat corpore sudor), 
" Corripio e stratis corpus, tendoque supinas 
" Ad caelum cum voce manus, et munera libo 
" Intemerata focis: perfecto laetus honore 
" Anchisen facio certum, remque ordine pando." 

* Compare this with the appearance of Mercury to Hanni- 
bal, Sil. Ital. lib. III. from ver. 168. to 216. (particularly, 
" neque enim sopor ille," ver. 198.), and Isis's appearance in a 
dream to Telethusa, Ovid. Met. lib. IX. Fab. xii. 

Ver. 210—212. 
*' Strophades Graio stant nomine di.ctae 

" Insulae * 2 lonio in magno: quas dira Celaeno, 
" Harpyiaeque colunt aliae." 

*' Sir G. Wheeler tells us that the Strophades, called now 
Strovadi or Strivalli, are judged about 50 miles from Zant, and 
30 from the Morea ; very low, and the biggest not above 5 
miles in circuit, p. 45. 

# 2 See Georg. I. ver. 281. 

Ver. 255-257. 

" Sed non ante datam cingetis moenibus urbem, 
" Quam vos dira fames, nostraeque injuria caedis, 
" Ambesas subigat * malis absumere mensas." 

* See Georg. III. ver. 268. 

Ver. 270—276. 

" Jam medio apparet fluctu nemorosa j- 1 Zacvnthos *' 
" * 2 Dulichiumque * 3 Sameque, et Neritos ardua saxis; 
" Effugimus scopulos * + Ithacae, Laertia regna 
" Et terram altricem saevi execramur Ulyssis: 
" Mox et Leucatae nimbosa cacumina montis, 
" Et formidatus nautis aperitur f Apollo; 
" Hunc petinms fessi, et parvae succedimus urbi." 

t 1 Dionysius Halicarnasseus (after having spoken of the va- 
rious stories relating to Aeneas's voyage ; where he is giving 


that which may be most depended upon) says; EaeTSev (from 
Zacynthos) nsXxyiov <noirio~xfA.svoi tov 7t\xv sls AsuxxSx xxlxyovrxi, 
xxlsyjivlwv eri to yjhpiov ' A.xxpvxvwV xxl rxurri Ttxkiv Ispov Atyoooirris 
idquovrxt. Thto y vuv r E?JV sv ry vyioiSi rr) fxslx^u tw ^topuxr» rs 
xxi rr]s TioKtus' xxKsTrxt Sa Atp^ooWojr AlvsixSos. " Agxvlss $s xuroBsv, 
xxi eirl to " Axitov s\§6vlss, oqf^i^ovlxt r» Afx^qxxtxn KoXtth ttqos to 
dxqajlriQiov xxxs7Qev sls AfxQ^xxixv dtyiKvuvTat TtoKiv. Lib. I. p. 40. 

Virgil perhaps makes them stay at Actium, to celebrate the 
games there, in compliment to Augustus; who instituted the 
Actian Games, three years after his victory off this shore ; in 
gratitude to the Actian Apollo, who was said personally to 
assist him in that victory. 

Ovid, who describes this voyage of Aeneas so much in haste, 
does not omit his compliment on the same occasion: 

Versique vident sub imagine saxum 

" Judicis, Actiaco quae nuncab Apolline notaest." 

* Zacynthos, now Zant, one of the famous Currant Islands, 
subject to the state of Venice. Sir G. Wheeler tells us, that it 
is about thirty miles in circuit ; and is one of the most fruitful 
and pleasant places he ever saw. It lieth, he says, about 
thirty miles distant from the Morea, and about ten miles or 
more south from Cephalonia or Same. Pag. 39. 

* s Over against Pescarda (which is a harbour on the east 
side of Cephalonia), is the isle Thiaki, separated from Cepha- 
lonia only by a strait of three or four miles over ; for which 
reason some call it Little Cephalonia. The likeness of its name 
hath made it be taken for Ithaca, one of the principal Isles of 
Ulysses's kingdom; and is placed there by Sanson and Sophi- 
anus. But they may be deceived: for Strabo, speaking of 
Ithaca, gives it but eighty stadiaabout, whichmaketh ten Italian 
miles ; and this island is at the least double. Therefore I be- 
lieve that Ithaca is another little island, seven or eight miles 
from hence, called yet Ithaca: which is much less than this; 
which Sir George Wheeler believes was antientlv called Duli- 
chium, because it hath on the east side a port with the ruins of 
a town called yet Dolichia. In a wood there are to be seen the 
ruins of an old castle, which the islanders tell you wasthe palace 
of Ulysses. Sir G. Wheeler, p. 35, etc. 

* 3 The isle of Cephalonia in Homer's time was called Samos ; 
it was the greatest island of Ulysses's kingdom. And I wonder 
(says Sir G. Wheeler) that Strabo maketh it not above 300 
stadia in circuit, which amount but to 38 Italian miles; and 
Pliny no more than 44 nules ; although indeed it hath more than 
1*20 miles in compass, p. 36. 

* 4 As to the Isle Ithaca, it is desert; and those of Thiaki go 
thither to till it, in its beasons, p. 35. 


* 5 The island of St. Mauro was antiently called Leucada; and 
the modern Greeks call it so yet : for the castle only is properly 
called St. Mauro, from a convent which stood there, whilst it 
was under the Venetians. Strabo says, that it was antiently 
joined to the land ; and that the strait was dug to separate it ; 
which is likely enough; for in the straitest part it doth not 
much exceed flfty paces over, and almost everywhere three or 
four feet of water. It is in this narrowest part of the strait 
that the antient city Leucada had its situation, upon an emi- 
nence a mile from the sea ; of which some remains are yet to be 
seen. Sir G. Wheeler, p. 36. 

t 2 This is meant of the famous statue of Apollo, placed 
on the promontory of Actium: which as it stood so high, was 
visible to the mariners a good way out at sea ; and was much 
revered by them. Pol. VIII. 64 and 65. 

Ver. 283—288. 

" Interea *' magnum sol circumvolvitur annum; 
" Et glacialis hiems Aquilonibus asperat undas. 
" Aere * 2 cavo clypeum, magni gestamen Abantis, 
" Postibus adversis figo, et rem carmine signo; 
" Aeneas haec de Danais victoribus arrnay 

Quaer. If, by " Magnum annum" here, Virgil does not mean 
Quinquennium ; the usual time for celebrating these times ? If 
so, we are hereby informed of the time since Aeneas left Troy. 

* 2 This alludes to the dedication made by Augustus at the 
place after the battle of Actium, as Aeneas's celebrating the 
games there does to his sports. Strabo tells us that, " De 
" praeda ex hostibus capta Caesar dedicavit decem naves, ab 
" uno remorum ordine acta ad deciremem usque, primitias spoli- 
" orum." Lib. VII. 

Ver. 339— 341. 
" Quidpuer Ascanius? superatne, et vescitur aura? 

" Quem tibijam Troja *' 

" Ecquae jam puero est amissae cura * 2 parentis?" 

*' Thisbreak was certainly intended, and is a great beauty. 
Virgil through this whole passage makes Andromache express 

her passionate enquiries in broken sobs. What if we sup- 

pose that Aeneas, perceiving by this beginning that Andro- 
mache was going to enquire after Creiisa, stops her, to prevent 
her naming her name ; and, by some sign, signifiesthat she was 
dead ? It is very common among the Italians to this day to ex- 
press their meaning by signs ; and supposing this to be the case, 
the enquiry in the next verse follows very properly. 

* s Some commentators explain Farentls (Patriae), the sense of 


which would be very good, and be very properly followed by 
the two ensuing verses ; but as it would be unmannerly and iu- 
excusable in Andromache, if she had not known Creiisa's fate, 
not to make the least mention of or enquiry after her, therefore 
we must suppose that she did not know it ; and her condoling 
eompliment to be paid here ; and the word here used (viz.) 
Amissae, is the most proper |hat coukl be used on the occasion ; 
and shews plainly that Andromache condoles the loss of Creiisa, 
and that tenderly without mentioning her name. Ruaeus tells 
us how Andromache might be informed of the story : but sup- 
posing that she could not know it before this interview with 
Aeneas, would these critics have Virgil introduce her enquiring 
of Aeneas where his wife was ? That could not be without 
obliging Aeneas at the same time to relate again in form the 
whole story of the loss of her, which would have been absurd. 
Therefore, allowing she was told by Aeneas, it was necessary 
that it should be in private, and not related here. As we must 
suppose many things to have passed in their discourse touching 
this long voyage, which could not properly be related here : 
and this is agreeable to Horace's rule : 

" In medias res, 

" Non secus ac notas, auditorem rapit; et quae 
" Desperat tractata nitescere posse, relinquit." 

It is sufficient that she hints by the word Amissae, that she knew 
the story. We must suppose that Aeneas answered Andro- 
mache's questions; " Tibi qui cursum venti," etc. " Quid puer 
" Ascanius," etc. though Virgil does not say it. We must like- 
wise suppose that enquiry was made after Anchises, though not 
asserted here ; for we find afterwards presents sent to him: 

" Sunt et sua dona parenti." 

If all had been related in form, in questions and answers, this 
pathetic interview must have proved a very insipid one. 

Ver. 377—383. 

" Pauca tibi e multis, quo tutior hospita lustre* 
" Aequora, et Ausonio possis considere portu, 
" Expediam dictis : prohibent nam caetera Parcae 
" Scire Helenum, t farique vetat Saturnia Juno. 
" Principio Italiam, quam tu jam rere propinquam, 
" Vicinosque, ignare, paras invadere portus, 
" * Longa procul longis via dividit invia terris." 

T Virgil represents the prophet Helenus, as restrained in his 
discoveries of what was to happen to Aeneas, in his going for 
Italv. The great point in which he was thus restrained, was 


Aeneas's delay at Carthage ; and the danger that arose from it, 
of his quite breaking off his voyage, and settling in that city. 
Hence he says afterwards, ver. 440. " If Juno does not pre- 
" vent it, you shall go from Sicily to Italy ;" and it is true, he 
did so; but that was after the second time of his being in 
Sicily : and the whole affair of his being driven to the coast of 
Afric, and his staying so long at Carthage (which happened 
after his first leaving Sicily), is totally dropped by Helenus. 
All he does tell him, is ; how he may escape the other dangers 
in his voyage ; and what he is to do, and where to fix, when he 
is got to Italy. 

* This verse hints at the form of Italy ; which is extended in 
length like a leg, and has one side divided from the other by a 
craggy ridge of mountains. 

Ver. 389—393. 
" Cum tibi solicito secreti ad fluminis undam 
" Litoreis ingens inventa sub ilicibus + sus 
" Triginta capitum foetus enixa jacebit, 
" Alba, solo recubans, albi circum ubera nati; 
" Is locus urbis erit, requies ea certa laborum." 

■f " Quod portenderit factum 30 annis ut Lavinienses condi- 
" derint oppidum Albam. Hujus suis ac porcorum etiam 
" nunc vestigia apparent Lavinii ; quod et simulacra eorum 
" ahenea etiam nunc in publico posita, et corpus matris, quod 
" in salsura fuerit, demonstratur." Varro, De re rust. 1. II. 
c. iv. § 18. 

Ver. 399—402. 

" Hic et Narycii posuerunt moenia Locri, 
" Et Salentinos obsedit milite campos 
" Lvctius Idomeneus: hic illa ducis Meliboei 
" Parva * Philoctetae subnixa Petilia muro." 

* " Thurinorum urbem condidisse Philocteten ferunt, ibique 
adhuc Monumentum ejus visitur." Justin. lib. XX. c. i. 

Ver. 410—413. 
" Ast, ubi digressum Siculae te admoverit orae 
" Ventus, et angusti * ! rarescent claustra Pelori ; 
" Laeva tibi tellus et longo laeva petantur 
" Aequora circuitu : dextrum * 2 fuge littus et undas." 

*' Dr. Trapp has translated tliis very justly : " And strait 
" Pelorus shews its narrow passage." But in his notes he says; 
" One would think the word Rarescent should signify the 

" direct contrary," etc. Any one who only looks on the 

map will observe, that Italy and Sicily must appear at some 


distance to sailors as one land, till they come in a direct line 
with the Straits ; and then tlie Claustra Pelori raust open and 
discover its narrow passage. In tliis point of view Virgil 
should be understood. 

* 2 See the account of Octavius's sufferings in the straits of 
Messina. Appian, from p. 1142 to 1148. edit. Toll. 

Ver. 433-439. 

" * Praeterea, si qua est Heleno prudentia vati, 
" Si qua fides, animum si veris implet Apollo ; 
" Unum illud tibi, nate Dea, praeque omnibus unum 
" Praedicam, et repetens iterumque iterumque monebo; 
" Junonis magnae primum prece numen adora ; 
" Junoni cane vota libens, dominamque potentem 
" Supplicibus supera donis." 

* Observe with how much earnestness Helenus gives this 
admonition ; he repeats it over and over, and insists upon it as 
his principal instruction ; as Aeneas himself observes after- 
wards, ver. 546, " Dederat quae maxima." The occasion, I 
suppose, was ; the Poet hereby pays a compliment to Augustus 
for the temples he built in honour of Juno, notwithstanding 
her former hatred to the Trojans. Compare this with book 
XII. 840. 

Ver. 456, 457. 
" Quin adeas vatem, precibusque oracula poscas : 
" * Ipsa canat, vocemque volens atque ora resolvat." 

* Emphatically, Sibylla herself. See lib. VI. ver. 76. 

Ver. 521, 522. 

" Jamque rubescebat stellis Aurora fugatis: 
" Cum procul * obscuros colles, humilemque videmus 
" Italiam." 

* At such a distance that one scarce distinguishes whether 
they are mountains, or not. Lucan expresses this thought 
very prettily : 

" Dubios vanescere montes." Phars. lib. III. ver. 7. 

Ver. 564—567. 
" Tollimur in caelum curvato gurgite, et ldem 
" Subducta ad manes imos descendimus unda. 
" Ter scopuli clamorem inter cava saxa dedere ; 
" f Ter spumam elisam et rorantia vidimus astra." 

f Mr. Holdsworth thinks this line may possibly mean, " the 
" foam dashed from the rocks, and falling in sparkling drops." 


I wish it would fairly admit of his meaning ; because otherwise 
the sense draws too far toward the extravagant ; though not 
so much as Lucan's, in his storm, where he says, that their sails 
somfttimes touched the clouds, and their keel the bottom of 
the sea : 

" Nubila tanguntur velis, et terra carina." Phars. V. 642. 

Ver. 630—636. 
" Simul expletus dapibus, vinoque sepultus 

" Cervicem inflexam posuit, jacuitque per antrum 
" Immensus, saniem * eructans, ac frusta cruento 
" Per somnum commixta mero; nos, magna precati 
" Numina, sortitique vices, una undique circum 
" Fundimur, et telo lumen terebramus acuto 
" Ingens, quod torva solum sub fronte latebat." 

* This is a verv natural description, and well suited to such 
a brute as Polvpheme ; but would be too gross for the ears of a 
Queen, if we do not consider the story as related by Aeneas, 
" totidem verbis," from Achemenides. However, 1 think it 
was well that supper was over. 

Ver. 682—688. 

" Praecipites metus acer agit quocunque rudentes 
" Excutere, et ventis intendere vela secundis. 
" Contra, * jussamonent Heleni Scyllam atque Charybdim 
" Inter utramque viam, leti discrimine parvo, • 
" Ni teneant cursus: certum est dare lintea retro. 
" Ecce autem Boreas angusta a &ede Pelori 

" Missus adest."- 

* Aeneas is here in such difficulty from the danger of being 
driven on Scylla and Charybdis to avoid the Cyclops, that me- 
thinks he seems somewhat embarrassed even in his account ; till 
a northerly gale springs up, and sets him clear. 



Ver. 24—27. 

" Sed mlhi vel tellas optem prius ima dehiscat ; 
" Vel pater omnipotsns adigat me fulmine ad umbras, 
" Pallentes umbras f l Erebi, noctemque profundam, 
" f 8 Ante, Pudor, quam te violo, aut tua jura resolvo." 

t 1 For the situation of Erebus in the supposed subterraneous 
world, and the propriety of Virgil's description of it in this line, 
seePol.XVI. 4 and 13. 

t 2 Prius, ver. 24, makes this Ante a needless, or rather a 
faulty, repetition. — It was probably, according to Markland' 
conjecture, sante, or sancte pudor, in the old manuscript. 

Ver. 40, 41. 

" Hinc Getulae urbes, genus insuperabile bello, 
" Et Numidae * infraeni cingunt, et inhospita Syrtis." 

* Infraeni here is very improperly interpreted Indomiti, by 
Ruaeus. Virgil certainly means their governing their horses 
without a bridle, by a wand only. See Lucan, lib. IV. 

" Gens fraenorum nescia," etc. 

Martial, lib. IX. Ep. xxiii. 

" Et Massylaeum virga gubernet equum." 

Claudian, De bello Gildon. 

" Sonipes ignarus habenae; 

" Virga regit." 

Silius Italicus describes this horsemanship of the Numidae 
most particularly : 

" Hic passim exultant Numidae, gens inscia fraeni; 
" Queis inter geminas per ludum mobilis aures 
" Quadrupedem flectit non cedens virga lupatis." 

Lib. I. 215. 

Ver. 120—122. 

" His ego nigrantem commista grandine nimbum, 
" Dum trepidant alae, saltusque indagine cingunt, 
" Desuper infundam, et tonitru tcaelum omne ciebo." 



f That Juno and Minerva shared the high privilege of 
managing the thunder, with Jupiter, is proved at large in Pol. 
VI. 80. 

Ver. 141—150. 

" Ipse ante alios f pulcherrimus omnes 

" Infert se socium Aeneas, atque agmina jungit. 

" Qualis, ubi liybernam Lyciam, Xanthique fluenta 

" Deserit, ac Delum maternam invisit Apollo, 

" Instauratque choros : mixtique altaria circum 

" Cretesque Dryopesque fremunt, pictique Agathyrsi : 

" Ipse jugis Cynthi graditur, mollique fluentem 

" Fronde premit crinem fingens, atque implicat auro: 

" Tela sonant humeris. Haud illo segnior ibat 

" Aeneas: tantum egregio decus enitet ore." 

f Virgil, in speaking of Aeneas, has often an eye toward 
Augustus: how particularly so in-this comparison of Aeneas to 
Apollo, see Pol. VIII. 1, and 10 to 22. — The Apollo here de- 
scribed has a great resemblance to the famous Belvedere Apollo, 
Ib. 23. 

Ver. 165. 

" Speluncam Dido f , dux et Trojanus eandem 
" Deveniunt." 

f Mr. Addison used to observe, " that Virgil was more judi- 
" cious in the use of his epithets than Homer. Homer's usual 
" epithet for his hero (said he) is Tto&zs wxvs, or 7iodx^y.r,s ; and 
" is used by him of Achilles whether he is fighting, standing, 
" sitting, or lying down. VirgiFs most common epithet for his 
" hero, is Pius, or Pater ; and I have considered what passage 
" there is in any part of the Aeneid, where either of these ap- 
" pellations would be the most improper for him : and this, I 
" think, is his meeting with Dido in the cave ; where Pius 
" Aeneas would have been absurd, and Pater Aeneas a bur- 
" lesque. The Poet has therefore judiciously dropped them 
" both for Dux Trojanus: which he has repeated twice ; in 
" Juno's speech, and in his own narration : for he very well 
" knew, a loose action might be consistent enough with the 
" usual manners of a soldier ; though it became neither the 
" chastity of a pious man, nor the gravity of the father of a 
" people." Fromthe Tatler, N°. VI. It was this observation 
of his, wliich lie had communicated before to his school-fellow 
Steel, which discovered to the former who was the author of the 
Tatlers; and, in about half a year after, engaged him to join in 
the work: and so, at the long run, was the occasion of all his 
fine Spectators, etc. 


Ver. 181—183. 

" Monstrum horrendum, ingens; cui quot sunt corpore 
" Tot vigiles oculi subter (mirabile dictu), 
" Tot linguae, totidem ora sonant, tot subrigit aures." 

t In Pol. (pl. XXIX.) is a iigure of Fame, the under side of 

whose wings is all studded with eyes. 1 am apt to imagine, 

that some of the lower painters of old used to represent Fame 
(as some of the moderns have done of late) with eyes and ears 
all over her body ; even to her fingers' ends : for which, in par- 
ticular, Lucian seems to ridicule them in the following passage. 
TloXucJlov asxulov avx.Trstpriva.s, Toaocula. aw/.ocos' cus xala ro TBpoc- 
7w^cf, xou (>ict tcuv ovuyjuv riY.rtY.ow. Tom. II. p. 756. ed. Blaeu. 
Lucianhere calls Fame, to Tspalco^ss, asVirgil cails her Monstrum, 

Ver. 246, 247. 
Jamque volans apicem et latera ardua cernit 

st Atlantis duri, caelum qui t vertice fulcit." 

t In another place Virgil says, that he supports it with his 
shoulder (Aen. VIII. 137.); and Ovid says in one place, he sup- 
ports it with his shoulders (Fast. V. 169.); and in another, 
with his neck (Met. VI. 175.) These seeming contrarieties are 
reconciled by the Farnese Atlas : in which figure he is repre- 
sented as supporting the globe of the heavens, at the same time, 
with his head, neck, and shoulders. See Pol. pb XXXIV. 

Ver. 345—361. 

" Italiam magnam Grynaeus AjdoIIo, 

" Italiam Lyciae + jussere capessere sortes: 

" Hic amor, haec patria est. Si te Carthaginis arces 

" Phoenissam, Libycaeque aspectus detinet urbis : 

" Quae tandem Ausonia Teucros considere terra 

" Invidia est ? et nos fas extera quaerere regna. x. r. X. 

t Aeneas's reason for leaving Dido is the very strongest that 
could have been given, to an Heathen. " He had repeated 
' ' commands from the Gods to leave her ; and therefore could 
" not stay." 

The reason why it sounds so weak to many of the modern 
critics must be ; either from those who were then looked upon 
as Gods beinsc now seen in a ridiculous light ; or from our critics 
not havuig so strong a notion of the interposition of Providence 
as the Heathenshad. 

I do not remember that any one of these critics has ever ob- 
served that this speech is left unfinished by Virgil : and yet a, 

o % 


good-naturecl critic, that was not satisfied with the reasons 
given, might well say, " that Virgil probabiy had others in re- 
" serve, had he lived to complete his work." 

Ver. 402—405. 

lt Ac veluti ingentem formicae farris acervum 
" Cum populant, hiemis memores, tectoque reponunt: 
" It * nigrum campis agmen, praedamque per herbas 
" Convectant calle angusto." 

m Jodicus Badius Ascensius, in his notes cn Horace, lib. I. 
Sat. vii. observes, that this verse is taken from Ennius, who 
speaks it de Barris, i. e. Nigris Elephantis; from whence Vir- 
gil very beautifully applies it to ante. 

Ver. 435-440. 

" Extremam hanc cra veniam ; miserere sororis: 
" Quam mihi cum dederit, cumulatum *' morte remittam. 
" Talibus orabat, talesque miserrima fietus 
" Fertque refertque soror: sed nuliis ille movetur 
" Fletibus, aut voces ullas tractabilis audit. 
" Fata obstant: * 2 placidasque viri Deus obstruit aures." 

^ 1 Quaer. If this must not be supposed to be spoken aside, 
so as not to be overheard by her sister ? Otherwise it contra- 
dicts what follows. 

* 2 Aeneas in his speech to Dido's shade, lib. VI. 460, speaks 
to the same purpose, and owns that he loved her : 

" Invitus, Regina, tuo de Iittore cessi:" etc. 

And Anchises's ghost declares as much to Aeneas : 

" Quam metui, ne quid Libyae tibi regna nocerent !" 

Lib. VI. 694. 
The greatest souls are subject to this passion. 

Ver. 509—511. 
" Stant arae circum: et crines effusa sacerdos 
" Tercentum tonat ore Deos ; Erebumque Chaosque, 
" f Tergeminamque Hecaten tria virginis ora Dianae." 

" t Ora vides Hecates, in tres vertentia partes." 

Ovid. Fast. I. ver. 141. 

*' Diana interim est alte succincta, venatrix; et Ephesia, 
"- mammis multis, et veribus extructa; et Trivia, multis capiti- 
" bus et multis manibus horrifica." Minutius Felix, § XXI. 
p«, 108. ed. Davis. 


Her own proper namc, under this appearance, was Hecate. 
Trivia is only an accidental one ; from her statues Peing usually 
placed where three streets (or ways) met together. 

Ver. 560—562. 

" Nate Dea, potes hoc sub casu ducere somnos? 
" Nec, quae circumstent te deinde pericula, cernis ? 
" Demens .' nec * Zephyros audis spirare secundos ? 

* How does this agree with the beginning of the fifth book ? 
Unless by Zephyros is meant only fine weather ? — But supposing 
we take lt for the south-westerly winds ; we must consider this 
only as a vision to hasten Aeneas's departure ; and, therefore, m 
this place, when Mercury is hurrying him to be gone instantly, 
it would have been ridiculous to have made him dream that the 
wind was contrary ; it was necessary to represent it as^ favour- 
able as it coulcl blow, yet I see no necessity of his finding lt se> 
when awake : it was then (we will suppose) northerly ; yet he 
obeys the admonition, and rows out of the harbour. Compare 
this with the second verse of the fifth book : 

Fluctusque atros Aquilone secabat," 

Eia age, rumpe moras : * varium et mutabile sempei" 

" Femina."- 

* Dryden, in his dedication to the Aeneis, observes, that this 
is the sharpest satire, in the fewest words, that ever was made 
on womankind ; for both the adjectives are neuter, and Animal 
must be understood to make them grammar. Virgil, says he, 
does well to put those words into the mouth of Mercury, etc. 


" Idem omnes simul ardor habet : rapiuntque, ruuntque ; 
" Litora deseruere ; * latet sub classibus aequor." 

* From their going close and compact together. 

Ver. 600-612. 

" Non potui abreptum divellere corpus, et undis 
" Spargere ? non socios, non ipsum absumere ferro 
" Ascanium, patriisque epulandum apponere mensis? 
" Verum anceps pugnae fuerat fortuna ! fuisset. 
" Quem metui moritura ? faces in castra tulissem, 
" Implessemque foros flammis ; natumque patremque 
" Cum genere extinxem, memet super ipsa dedissem. 


" * Sol, qui terrarum flammis opera omnia lustras : 
" Tuque harum interpres curarum, et conscia Juno, 
" Nocturnisque Hecate triviis ululata per urbes, 
" Et Dirae ultrices, et Dii morientis Elisae, 
" Accipite haec, meritumque malis advertite numen, 
" Et nostras audite preces." — 

* Dr. Trapp here remarks that after all the rage and mad- 
ness, and variety of passion, expressed in the most rapid style, 
with short quick sentences, questions, , exclamations, etc. in 
Dido^s foregoing speech ; she here, in the very next words 
(between which and the foregoing she must be imagined to have 
paused, and panted, and taken breath), cools, and settles, falls 
into the long, and slow style, and prays for plagues upon the 
head of her false lover, with such religious formality, and so- 
lemnity of horror, as is enough to chill one's blood, while one 
reads it. See his Introductory Remarks on the fourth book, 

part II. At the conclusion of this excellent remark he has the 

following observation : " I much question whether Virgil did 
310 1 leave the last verse imperfect at, 

" Imprecor, arma armis." Ver. 629. 

" And whether some editor did not fill it up with, 

— " pugnent ipsique nepotes;" 

" Which seems (says he) to be a very flat and bald hemistich 
" (more like one of Ovid's than of VirgiPs), especially at the 
" very conclusion of so noble a speech ; and yet more especially 
*' since it is a tautology with, 

" Tum vos, O Tyrii, stirpem, et genus omne futurum 
" Exercete odiis," etc. 

I must beg leave to differ from this excellent critic. Let us 
consider then the whole drift of these twenty-three lines : Dido 
having invoked all the Gods and Goddesses, proper to be ap- 
plied to on this occasion, to revenge her on Aeneas, is by them 
inspired with a kind of prophetic spirit, to call down such 
judgments upon him, and his posterity, as were afterwards in 
some measure fulfilled. The first part of her imprecation is 
levelled at Aeneas. And here we must observe, that Virgil 
takes this opportunity, which he has not elsewhere done, of 
hinting at the latter part of Aeneas's history, after he had killed 
Turnus (viz.) ; his short reign, and the manner of his death : 
Ver. 618, etc. It is true, indeed, that scarce any of these curses 
against Aeneas were completed according to the full import of 
the words, or, as we may suppose Dido wished. But we know 


by a parallcl case tliat the terrible curse of the Harpy was ac- 
complished in a joke : and even the predictions of oracles, which 
were seemingly most dreadful, often ended in trifles. The latter 
part of Dido's imprecation relates to the posterity of Aeneas. 
And this we find actually fulfilled in Hannibal, in the frequent 
breach of leagues ; and the perpetual enmity between the 
Romans and Carthaginians, till the latter were certainly de- 
stroyed. Dido, not contented to stop here, entails the com- 
pletion of her curses upon all the descendants of the Cartha- 
ginians : 

" pugnent ipsique nepotes." 

This seems to take in Juba more particularly, who descended, 
as it is said, i\'om a sister of Hannibal ; and so the imprecation 
is continued to VijrgiPs own time. There is a passage in Lucan 
to this purpose, which supposes Juba derived a natural hatred 
to the Romans from this very cause, his descent from the Car- 
thaginians. When Pompey, after the battle of Pharsalia, was 
consulting with his friends what course to take, and some of 
them proposed to fly for succour to Juba, Pompey opposed it 
and said ; 

" Anceps dubii terret solertia Mauri : 

" Namque memor generis, Carthaginis impia proles 

" Imminet Hesperiae, multusque in pectore vano est 

" Hannibal, obliquo maculat qui sanguine regnum, 

" Et Numidas contingit avos." Phars. lib. VIII. 283. 

Plutarch likewise tells us, that when Cato was for defending 
Utica against Caesar, his friends opposed his shutting himself 
up there, because they suspected the Uticenses, as being of the 
race of the Carthaginians. In short, it was the general opinion 
of the Romans, that Hannibal and the Carthaginians had tainted 
the whole country. 

Ver. 612-629. 

Si tangere portus 

Tnfandum caput, ac terris adnare necesse est ; 
Et sic fata Jovis poscunt, hic terminus haeret : 
At * x bello audacis populi vexatus et armis, 
Finibus extorris, complexu avulsus Iiili, 
Auxilium imploret, videatque indigna suorum 
Funera : nec, cum se sub leges pacis * a iniquae 
Tradiderit, regno aut optata luce fruatur ; 
Sed * 3 cadat ante diem, mediaque * 4 inhumatus arena. 
Haec precor ; hanc vocem extremam cum sanguine fundo. 
; Tum vos, 6 Tyrii, stirpem et genus omne futurum 


" Exercete odiis ; cinerique haec mittite nostro 

" Munera : nullus amor populis, nec foedera sunto. 

" Exoriare aliquis nostris ex ossibus ultor, 

" Qui face Dardanios ferroque sequare colonos ; 

" Nunc, olim, quocunque dabunt se tempore vires, 

" Litora litoribus contraria, fluctibus undas 

" lmprecor, arma armis : pugnent ipsique nepotes." 

* T " Quasi has inferias sibi Saguntinorum ultimae dirae in. 
" illo publico parricidio incendioque mandassent ; ita manibus 
" eornm, vastatione Italiae, captivitate Africae, ducum et regum, 
" qui id gessere bellum, exitio parentatum est." Florus, 
lib. II. c. vi. To which Minellius has this note ; " Non leve 
" momentum habere putabantur pereuntium imprecationes, 
" adversus eos qui salutem eorum injuste impugnaverant," etc. 
See likewise the curse of Eumenes, Justin. XIV. iv. 

* 2 Iniquae may here signify unequal, as it often does : and 
so be fulfilled by the peace with Latinus, notwithstanding Aeneas 
had the advantage of the conditions. The ambiguity of the 
word makes it suit better with the prophetic style. 

* 3 Aeneas lived to be old, as Anchises assures, lib. VI. 764. 
" Quem tibi longaevo," etc. therefore this curse of Dido was 
accomplished by fame only, or vulgar opinion. 

* 4 Dionysius Halicarnasseus says ; " Commisso acri praelio, 
" multisque utrinque caesis, Aeneae corpus nusquam apparuit : 
" alii in Deos translatum putarunt, alii mersum fluvio juxta 
" quem proelium fuerat. Latini templum Aeneae condiderunt, 
" cum inscriptione, Jovi Indigeti, seu Patri Divo terrestri, qui 
" fluvii Numici undas gubernat." Lib. I. Juvenal hints at 
this tradition ; when speaking of Hercules and Aeneas, he says ; 

" Alter aquis, alter flammis ad sidera missus." 

Sat. XI. 63. 

Silius Italicus agrees with Virgil that Aeneas had quiet pos- 
session of the kingdom of Latinus ; and enjoyed it for some 
time. At the beginning of his eighth book, when Anna, Dido's 
sister, is relating the story of her being driven on the coast of 
Laurentum, she says ; 

" Ecce autem Aeneas sacro comitatus Iiilo, 
" Jam regni compos, noto sese ore ferebat." 

Lib. VIII. 71. 

And a few verses before she says, this was two years after the 
death of Dido : 

" Ast ea dum flavas bis tondet messor aristas 
" Servata interea sedes ; nec longius uti 
" His opibus Battoque fuit."-- — - 


Ver. 659, 660. 
" Dixifc, et os impressa toro, moriemur inultae? 
'* Sed moriemur, ait : sic, t sic, juvat ire sub umbras." 

T It is at this instant that she stabs herself (like the tyrants 
in our tragedies — Thus, thus, 1 thank thee ! — when they give 
two or three repeated strokes of the poniard). Her last reso- 
lution is taken immediately before this ; and she has given the 
blow before ver. 663. 

*- Methinks, says Dr. Trapp, I see her strike two strokes 
while she pronounces these words : and I am confident Virgil 
intended by that repetition to convey that image to the mind. 
As in another place ; 

" Pallas te hoc vulnere, Pallas 

" Immolat." 

See his Introductory Remarks to this Book; part II. 


Ver. 1—4. 
" Interea medium Aeneas jam classe tenebat 
" Certus iter, fluctusque atros * Aquilone secabat, 
" Moenia respiciens, quae jam infelicis Elisae 
" Collucent flammis." 

* I cannot agree with Ruaeus that Virgil means by Aquilone 
the wind in general : at least I think he would not in this place 
have expressed himself by Aquilone, if he meant a contrary 
southerly wind, though not favourable, to shew his hero's re- 
solution : and this thought is still heightened by " fluctus 
atros ;" he was determined to be gone, though the wind was 
contrary and the sea black, and rough weather. This explana- 
tion corresponds exactly with Dido's speech to Aeneas, upon 
her first discovery of his intention to leave her : 

" Quin etiam hiberno moliris sidere classem, 

" Et mediis properas Aquilonibus ire per altum ; 

" Crudelis!" Lib. IV. 310. 

And when Dido finds Aeneas deaf to her entreaties, and deter- 
mined to be gone, she then desires her sister Anna to prevail 
on him, only to defer his voyage till he might go more easily, 
when the winds were favourable : 


" Quo ruit? extremum hoc miserae clet munus amanti ; 
" Expectet facilemque fugam, ventosque ferentes." 

Lib. IV. 429. 
Ver. 10—21. 

" Olli caeruleus supra caput astitit imber, 
" Noctem hiememque ferens ; et inhorruit unda tenebris. 
" Ipse gubernator puppi Palinurus ab alta : 
" Heu ! quianam tanti cinxerunt aethera nimbi ? 
*' Quidve, pater Nuptune, paras? Sic deinde locutus, 
*' Colligere arma jubet, validisque incumbere remis ; 
*' Obliquatque sinus in ventum, ac talia fatur: 
" Magnanime Aenea, non, si mihi Jupiter auctor 
*' Spondeat, hoc sperem Italiam contingere caelo. 
" * Mutati transversa fremunt, et vespere ab atro 
" Consurgunt venti; atque in nubem cogitur aer. • 
" Nec nos obniti contra, nec tendere tantum 
" Sufficimus." 

* It might here be objected, that as Aeneas, verse 2, set 
out from Carthage with a contrary wind, its shifting to the 
west was rather an advantasre to him and ought to have made 
Palinurus rejoice rather than complain. But to this we may 
answer ; that although the northerly wind is far from being 
favourable from Carthage to Italy ; yet supposing it regular 
and steady, as it commonly is from that quarter, they might 
sail out with it and row ; whereas upon the wind changing, it 
immediately threatened a storm : 

" Supra caput astitit imber 

" Noctem hiememque ferens, et inhorruit unda tenebris." 

Ver. 11. 

This obliged them to take to their oars ; " Colligere arma, 
" validisque incumbere remis ;" the storm increasing and blow- 
ing a hurricane across them, " transversa fremunt," they could 
no longer make use of their oars, " nec obniti contra nec ten» 
" dere sufficimus." Upon this they are forced, " flectere viam 
" velis," to hoist their sails ; and go directly before the wind, 
which drove them to the coast of Sicily, as fortune and the 
Gods directed. 

Ver. 116—122. 

" Velocem Mnestheus agit acri remige Pristin, 
" Mox Italus Mnestheus, genus a quo nomine Memmi: 
" Ingentemque Gyas ingenti mole Chimaeram, 
" Urbis opus ; triplici pubes quam Dardana versu 
" Impellunt, terno consurgunt ordine remi. 

* Sergestusque, domus tenet a quo Sergia nomen, 

Centauro invehitur magna.' 


* See an account of Sergius, Appian, lib. IV. 989. There / 
is a triumphal arch still remaining at Pola in honour of the 

Ver. 129—131. 

" Hic viridem Aeneas + frondenti ex ilice metam 
" Constituit, signum nautis, pater ; unde reverti 
" Scirent, et longos ubi circumflectere cursus." 

+ This was in the wintor (from IV. 309 anteh.) : but the 
Ilex is an evergreen. They are very frequent in Italy, where 
they call thein Ilce: and begin to be not uncommon in England: 
we call them Evergreen Oaks. 

Horace speaks of the Quercus and Ilices together, lib. III. 
Od. 33. 10.— Ep. I. xvi. 9.— and Virgil, G. III. 332. 

The leaf of the Ilex is like that of Holly ; only of a darker 
dirtier green : " Ilice sub nigra." Ecl. VI. 54. 

" Duris ut ilex tonsa bipennibus 

" Nigrae feraci frondis in Algido." Hor. lib. IV. Od. iv. 58» 

Ver. 144—147. 

" Non tam praecipites bijugo certamine campum 
" Corripuere, ruuntque effusi carcere currus ; 
" Nec sic immissis aurigae undantia lora 
" Concussere jugis, pronique in verbera pendent." 

* See Pope's Odyssey, book XIII. note on verse 98. 

Ver. 235—238. 

" Dii, quibus imperium est pelagi, quorum aequora curro; 
" Vobis laetus ego hoc candentem in litore taurum 
" Constituam ante aras voti reus, extaque salsos 
" * Porriciam in fluctus, et vina liquentia fundam." 

* " Exta Deis cum dabant, Porricere dicebant." Varro De 
Re Rust. lib. I. c. xxix. 

Ver. 250, 251. 

" Chlamydem auratam, quam plurima circum 

" Purpura * Maeandro duplici Meliboea cucurrit." 

* " Maeandrus genus picturae dictum a similitudine flexus 

" amnis qui appellatur Maeandrus." " Solevano adornare e 

" guarnire 1'estremita delle veste con certe strisce di porpora 
" riportate con lavori di questi Maeandri." Buanorroti's 
Medaglioni, p. 93, where he represents in a plate the iigure of 
some Goddess in a habit hemmed with such Maeanders. 


Ver. 379. 
" Manibusque inducere * caestus." 

* See Fabretti, Column. Trajan. c. viii. et ver. 403. posthac. 

Ver. 490—493. 

" Convenere viri, s 1 dejectamque aerea sortem 
" Accepit galea : et primus clamore secundo 
" Hyrtacidae ante omnes exit locus Hippocoontis ; 
" Quem modo navali Mnestheus certamine * 2 victor 
" Consequitur." 

-^ 1 Ruaeus here, in his interpretation, turns this into the 
plural : and Dr. Trapp in a note f on the place, says, that if 
any edition favoured his conjecture he should rather think it 
should be Dejectas Sortes the plural, for a reason too plain to 
be mentioned. — But they had not observed that Virgil at least 
never chooses to use this word in the plural, but when he is 
speaking of oracles or predictions, unless in Book VI. 22. 
which is likewise on a solemn mournful occasion. 

* 2 " Who was victorious, a conqueror, one of the con- 
" querors, who got one of the prizes:" Either of these ex- 
pressions answer VirgiPs meaning ; and therefore I am very 
much surprised that Dr. Trapp should except against the woi*d, 
and not think it good sense. See his note on the place. The 
first part of this remark in answer to La Cerda is right ; but I 
wish he had stopped there, without giving us the latter part. 

Ver. 568, 569. 

" Alter Atys, genus unde * Atti duxere Latini : 
" Parvus Atys, pueroque puer dilectus Iiilo," 

¥ This is a compliment to Augustus, who, by his mothei -, s 
side, was descended from the Atii ; for Augustus's mother, 
Atia, was daughter to M. Atius Balbus by Julia, Julius 
Caesar's sister. As Julius Caesar is represented under the cha- 
racter of Ascanius, the alliance between Caesar's family and 
the Atian is prettily foretold and represented as in embryo in 
this verse ; 

" Parvus Atys, pueroque puer dilectus Iiilo." 

The family of Atius was of Aricia. See Suetonius in Octav. 
et Vulpii Latium Vetus, tom. IV. p. 91. 

Ver. 731—735. 

" Ditis tamen ante 

" Infernas accede domos ; et Averna per alta 


" Congressus pete, nate, meos. Non me impia namque 

" tTartarahabent, ttristesque umbrae; sed amoena piorum 

" Consilia, Elysiumque colo. 11 

•(- Are not these the"three divisions of Hades, that are described 
so much more distinctly in the next book? If so, the reading 
should be " Tristesve umbrae;" not " Tristesque umbrae," as 
in the Delphin edition; and much less not " Tartara habent, 
tristes umbrae;" as in Mattaire's. 

Ver. 738,739. 
Torquet tmedios nox humida cursus, 

" Et me saevus equis Oriens afflavit anhelis.' 

t There was a distinction that prevailed very early among 
the Romans, of the civiland the natural day. The natural day 
was most commonly reckoned from sunrise to sunset; the civil 
day, from midnight to midnight again. Virgil, in speaking per- 
sonally of the latter, calls it Oriens : a name that was not much 
used in his time; but which he (as a professed lover of antiquity 
and of their antient words) chose to use, where it was more 
proper than Sol (or even Dies) would have been. 

Macrobius, in speaking of this passage, says ; " Virgilius 
** id ipsum ostendit, ut hominem decuit poeticas res agentem, 

" recondita atque operta veteris ritus significatioiie : his 

" enim verbis diem, quem Romani civilem appellavere, a. sexta 
" noctis hora oriri admonet." Saturn. lib. I. c. iii. 

Ver. 743—745. 

" Haec r«emorans, cinerem, et sopitos suscitat ignes: 
" Per^sineumque Larem, et canae penetralia Vestae 
« Parre pio et plena supplex veneratur * acerra." 

* Acerra and Lanx were both used for the Thura, etc. in sa- 
crifices; the former signifying a small dish or plate, the latter a 
large one, as is expressly said~by Ovid: 

" Nec, quae de parva Dis pauper libat acerra 
" Thura minus, grandi quam data lance, valent." 

De Ponto, lib. IV! Ep. viii 

Ver. 813, 814. 

" Tutus quos optas portus t accedet Averni: 
" Unus eiit tantum, amissum quem gurgite quaeret." 

f Venus desires Neptune to grant Aeneas a safe voyage from 
Sicily to Latium (ver. 796 — 798.); and Neptune answers, that 
he sHall come safe to the coast of Cumae : 


" Tutus quos optas portus accedet Averni." 

Ts that a satisfactory answer to lier request ? 

The Florentine manuscript reads it accedit. Will not that 
set it right ? As if he had said; " He is going on to the port of 
" Avernus, as safely as you could wish: (and he shall go on as 

" safely the rest of his voyage)." Nothing is more common 

in Virgil than this way of not mentioning expressly what may 
be easily inferred: it is one of the distinguishing differences 
between his and Horaer's manner of writing. 

* Mr. Spence informs me, that a very good Florentine manu- 
script has Accedit : and observes that, when Venus requests of 
Neptune for Aeneas, 

— — " Liceat Laurentem attingere Tybrim,'''' 

it is very odd that Neptune should promise only to briug him 

safe half way, " Tutus portus accedet Averni:" and there- 

fore imagines it should be Accedit. — By which Neptune assures 
her that her request is so far granted, that Aeneas is already 
entering into the port of Cumae : or rather that she might be 
assured he was as safeas if he was already arrived there; for it 
is plain by what follows that he was not yet arrived. — But, after 
all, I would rather choose to put the stop after Accedet, and 
construe Averni with Gurgite. 

Ver.854— 860. 

*' + Ecce Deus ramum Lethaeo rore madentem, 
" Vique soporatum Stygia, super utraque quassat 
" Tempora ; cunctantique natantia lumina solvit. 
" Vix primos inopina quies laxaverat artus: 
" Et superincumbens, cum puppis parte revulsS.- 
" Cumque * gubernac , lo, liquidas projecit in undas 
" Praecipitem." 

-y VirgiPs account of Palinurus's death is in the strong ori- 
ental taste. — In this place it is said ; " That a God took away all 
" his vigilance, toi*e off the rudder he should have guided, and 
" flung him overboardwithit into the sea :" inanother (VI.351.) 
" That the God had nothing to do in it; but that it was wholly 
" owing to himself." There are frequent instances of the very 
same orientalism in Homer, and in the sacred writings. 

* It is not improbable, that Virgil may here allude to an ac- 
cident which happened to Augustus: " Alia tempestate in tra- 
" jectu bis conflictatus, primo inter Promontoria Peloponnesi 
" atque Aetoliae, rursus circa montes Ceraunios, utrobique 
" parte Liburnicarum demersa, simulque ejus in qua vehebatur 
" fusis armamentis, et gubernaculo diffracto." Sueton, in Aug. 



Ver. 1—2. 

" Src fatur lacrymans : classique immittit habenas: 
" Et tandem Euboicis * Cumarum allabitur oris." 

* Baiae was reckoned formerly the port of Cumae; and that 
Aeneas landed there appears from Ovid's account, who says ex- 
pressly that he came to the shores of Curaae, leaving Naples to 
the right hand and Misenum to the left: 

" Has ubi praeteriit et Parthenopeia dextra 
" Moenia deseruit; laeva de parte canori 
" Aeolidae tumulum, et loca foeta palustribus ulvis 
" Littora Cumarum, vivacisque antra Sibyllae 
« Intrat."- Met. XIV. 105. 

Ver. 9—12. 

" At pius Aeneas arces quibus altus Apollo 
" Praesidet, horrendaeque procul secreta #1 Sibyllae, 
" * 8 Antrum immane, petit: magnam cui mentem animumque 
" Delius inspirat vates, aperitque futura." 

** In Virgil's account of Aeneas's preparation for his descent 
into hell, most people are apt to confound the Priestess of the 

Sibyl, and the Sibyl herself together. The Priestess's name 

is Deiphobe, the daughter of Glaucus; which was not the name 

of any of the Sibyls. The Sibyl herself was a Goddess; and 

as such required an introductress to her : and Scipio, in Silius 
Italicus (lib. XTII.), has the Priestess Autonoe to conduct him 

to this veiy Sibyl. Virgil calls Deiphobe, generally, by the 

name of Sacerdos ; and the Sibyl, Vates, and Dea : Silius calls 
Autonoe only Vates; and the Sibyl, Vates, Major Vates, Mag- 
na Sacerdos, Veri facunda Sacerdos, Docta comes Triviae, 
Phoebei pectoris umbra Fatidica, Cymes anus, Virgo, Sibylla, 

and Umbra Sibyllae. The Priestess comes to conduct 

Aeneas to the temple where the Sibvl was, ver. 35; and it is 
she that speaks to ver. 55 : It is the Sibyl herself that spealcs 
afterwards, from ver. 82 to 155. The Priestess appears again 
ver. 244; and is succeeded again by the Sibyl, from ver. 258 
to the end. 

The whole course of the thing is thus : 

Aeneas puts in with his fleet near Cape Miseno, ver. 2. He 


sets out from thence for Cumae ; and stops in the portico of 
Apollo's temple there, whilst Achates goes for the Priestess, 
ver. 13. She comes, ver. 35; and introduces him into the temple, 
ver. 41 ; where he makes hisprayer, ver. 56; and has the answer 
from the Sibyl herself, ver. 83, etc. who orders him to search for 
the Golden Bough; and to bury the person, who lies dead in his 
fleet. He returns; and finds that person to be Misenus, 
ver. 162. 

Aeneas himself assists in getting the wood for Misenus's fu- 
neral pile, ver. 183, which, at the same time, occasions his find- 
ing the Golden Bough, ver. 187. He carries it to the Sibyl, 
ver. 211 ; and returns to pay his last rites to Misenus, ver. 232. 
Aeneas goes to tne lake of Avernus, ver. 236, between his 
fleet and the city of Cumae, and is met there by the Priestess, 
ver. 244. They perform the sacrifice, ver. 250. The Sibyl 
comes, ver. 258; and leads the way, ver. 262, through the cave, 
to hell. 

* 2 The Sibyl's Grot, (as it is called), by which Virgil makes 
Aeneas descend into hell,has one openingby the Lake Avernus; 
and had another at Cumae : and there was a passage went all 

under the hill fromone to the other. -f- Virgil makes Aeneas 

go quite through it, by his perpetual way of inferring things, 
rather than saying them directly : and then return the nearest 
way (ver. 900.) to his fleet, and set sail for Caieta. Ovid says 
expressly, that he came out at Cumae : 

" Talia convexum per iter memorante Sibylla, 
" Sedibus Euboicam Stygiis emergit in urbem 
" Troius Aeneas ; sacrisque a, more litatis 
" Litora adit nondum nutricis habentia nomen." 

Met. XIV. 1.57. 

Mr. Holdsworth had some thoughts of publishing an exact 
map of all that part of the country that lies between Cape 
Miseno and Gaeta ; which would be the best comment on a 
great part of the Sixth Aeneid, or at least help to illustrate it 
much better than any of the commentators have done. 

* Augustus shewed particular regard to the oracles of the 
Sibyl.— Strabo, speaking of the oracle of Jupiier Ammon in 
Afric, tells us that it was entirely neglected in his time : T^v 
'Pw/xaiwv aqxHfJLEWv rois 2i£u7.\yis ^nny.ois xxt rois Tupprmy.oi<; 
$Eo7rpo7riois ^ioc ts o-7rXaJx,vwv, y.a.1 o§vi9ajar, xzi oWr,jU,a<yy. Lib. XVII. 
And Suetonius, speaking De Pontificatu Augusti, says;_" Quic- 
" quid fatidicorum librorum Graeci Latinique generis nullis 
" vel parum idoneis auctoribus vulgo ferebatur, supra duo 
" millia contracta undique cremavit : at solos retinuit Sibyllinos 
" (hos quoque delectu habito) condiditque duobus forulis 
" auratis sub Palatini Apollinis basi." 


Ver. 20—23. 

" * In foribus, letum Androgeo : tum pendere poena3 
" Cecropidae jussi (miserum !) septena quotannis 
" Corpora natorum : stat ductis sortibus urna. 
" Contra elata mari respondet Gnosia tellus." 

* We are to consider this as a sculpture, where Crete is to 
be shewn at a great distance from Athens, in a farther corner 
of the piece, and represented in relief ; the sea, in a plainer 
surface, lying between.— The parts of the piece are very well 

The folding doors of the temple of Apollo on the Palatine 
hill, built by Augustus, were adorned in like manner with 
stories in relief ; as we find by Propertius (lib. II. El. 29.) 
here alluded to. 

" Et valvae Lybici nobile dentis opus. 
" Altera, dejectos Parnassi vertice Gallos; 

" Altera, moerebat funera Tantalidos. 
" Deinde inter Matrem Deus ipse interque Sororem 

" Pythius in longa carmina veste sonat : 
" Illic aspicias scopulis haerere Sorores, 

" Et canere antiqui dulcia furta Jovis : 
" Ut Semele est combustus ; ut est deperditus lo ; 

" Denique ut ad Trojae tecta volavit Avis." 

Fores in this place cannot mean the doors of the temple, 
but some outward part leading to the temple : for Virgil makes 
his hero amuse himself with perusing the history of Daedalus 
carved there, whilst Achates was gone to call the Priestess. 
She afterwards, " vocat alta in templa :" after which it is said; 
" Ventum erat ad limen." And again afterwards, " Ante 
" fores. 11 These last Fores cannot be the same with theformer 
The latter may signify properly the doors of the inner or prin- 
cipal part of the temple, where the oracles were given (the 
Sanctum Sanctorum, as I may call it) ; the former Fores must 
mean the first approach to the temple. See Georg. III. ver. 26. 
and Aen. I. ver. 509. 

Ver. 24— 20. 

" Hic crudelis amor Tauri, suppostaque furto 
" Pasiphae, mistumque genus, prolesque f biformis 
" Minotaurus inest ; Veneris monumeuta nefandae." 

t The Minotaur is represented in antiques as mostly human, 
but with the head of a bull. Mr. Dryden, in his translation of 
this passage, has just reversed the form of him ; for he says, 

" The lower part a beast,]a man above." 


Such of the antients as describe the form of the Minotaur most 
exactly, agree with the antient artists. 

*" Minoi brachia Tauri." 

Stat. Achil. I. 192. 

— — — " Theseus 
" Centumurbes umbone gerit, centenaque Cretae 
" Moenia : seque ipsum monstrosi ambagibus antri 
" Hispida torquentem luctantis colla juvenci : 
" Alternasque manus circum, et nodoso ligantem 
" Brachia, et abducto vitantem cornua vultu." 


Eve/aov7o au%v avQpuitoi aYpioi, /3sxs(paXoi, xspala E^ov7fj* oiov zsup 
7ifA,iv rov Mtvolxuqov avx7r\uT%oi. Lucian's True Hist. lib. II. 
p. 407. ed. Bourdelotii. 

Ver. 33—36. 
Quin protinus omnia 

" Perlegerent oculis : ni jam praemissus Achates 
" Afforet ; atque una Phoebi Triviaeque * sacerdos, 
" f Deiphobe Glauci." 

* That Virgil, by Sacerdos, means a Priestess attending on 
the Sibyl, is manifest by his whole account ; for at Cumae the 
Sacerdos comes to Aeneas, and is conversing some time with 
him ; whilst the Sibyl is within in the cell, and does not appear 
till the doors open. Again afterwards, at the lake Averno, the 
Priestess with Aeneas performs the sacrifices in the night, in the 
absence of the Sibyl, and then she appears ; for Virgil expressly 
says that after the sacrifices were perfbrmed, 

" Ecce autem, primi sub lumina solis et ortus, 

" Sub pedibus mugire solum, etc. 

" Adventante Dea." 

Without this distinction between the Vates and Sacerdos, that 
is, between the Sibyl and the Priestess, this whole passage would 
be very unintelligible. It is true that afterwards in hell, on the 
banks of Acheron, he calls the Sibyl " longaeva Sacerdos." 

t The name of the Priestess is Deiphobe, that of the Cu- 
maean Sibyl was Demo. Pausanias, p. 828. (ed. Khunii, 1696.) 

Silius Italicus imitates Virgil in this, as in many other things. 
The name of his inferior Priestess is Autonoe. See latter part 
of the note on ver. 237. posth. 


Ver. 51—53. 

u Cessas in vota precesque 

" Tros, ait, Aenea? cessas? neque enim ante dehiscent 
" * Attonitae raagna ora doraus." — 

* Ruaeus's interpreting " Attonitae domiis" by " Antri 
" terrifici," and supposing this epithet given to the cave, " quia 
" attonitos ac trepidos facit," is very unpoetical. The Poet's 
thought is certainly to make the house convulsed, as well as the 
Priestess. The parallel he makes of Death being called Pallida, 
" quia pallorem inducit," is likewise wrong. When Horace 
says, " Pallida Mors aequo pulsat pede;" he must make Death 
personal to knock at the door ; and if Death appears in person, 
it ought to be Pallida. 

Ver. 98—101. 

" Talibus ex adyto dictis Cumaea Sibylla 
" Horrendas canit ambages, antroque remugit, 
" Obscuris vera involvens : ea * fraena furenti 
" Concutit, et stimulos sub pectore vertit Apollo." 

* So Lucan, in speaking of the Priestess of Delphi, says ; 

" Accipit et fraenos ; nec tantum prodere vati, 
" Quantum scire, licet." Lib. V. 176. 

Ver. 106, 107. 
Quando hic inferni janua regis 

" Dicitur, et tenebrosa palus * Acheronte refuso." 

* This lake, called Acherusia, lies between Cumae and 
Misenum. So Strabo describes it : UXwcnov $s rr/s Ky/Aer to 

M»<7r;vov axpcJlriQiov, xai sv to iAsla%u Ay^zpucna X<ptva), rr^ haXaoans 
avayjjcis ri<r rsva/w^f . It is a diiferent lake from the Avernus ; 
and Silius |Italicus, as well as Virgil, speaks of it as such, 
lib. XII. where, after having described Avernus, he adds; 

" Hinc vicina palus (fama est Acherontis ad undas 
" Pandere iter) caecas stagnante voragine fauces 
" Laxat ; et horrendos aperit telluris hiatus, 
" Interdumque novo perturbat lumine Manes." 

f Mr. Holdsworth also refers to Mr. Pope's Odyssey, B.X. 
note on ver. 602. That note is on the directions for Ulysses's 
descent to hell. 

" This whole scene is excellently imagined by the Poet, as 
" Eustathius observes; the trees are all barren, the place is 
" upon the shores where nothing grows; and all the rivers are 

p 2 


" of a melancholy signification, suitable to the ideas we have 
" of those infernal regions. Ulysses arrives at this place, where 
" he calls up the shades of the dead, in the space of one day ; 
" from whence we may conjecture, that he means a place that 
" lies between Cumae and Baiae, near the lake Avernus in 
" Italy; which, as Strabo remarks, is the scene of the necro- 
" mancy of Homer, according to the opinion of antiquity. He 
" further adds, that there really are such rivers as Homer men- 
" tions, though not placed in their true situation ; according to 
" the liberty allowed to poetry. Others write, that the Cim- 
" merii once inhabited Italy, and that the famous cave of Pausi- 
" lypo was begun by them about the time of the Trojan wars : 
" Here they offered sacrifice to the Manes, which might give 
" occasion to Homer's iiction. The Grecians, who inhabited 
" these places after the Cimmerians, converted these dark habi- 
" tations into stoves, baths, etc. 

" Silius Italicus writes, that the Lucrine lake was antiently 
" called Cocytus, lib. XII. 

" Ast hic Lucrino mansisse vocabula quondam 
" Cocyti memorat. 

" It is also probable, that Acheron was the antient name of 
" Avernus, because Acherusia, a large water near Cumae, flows 
" into it by concealed passages. Silius Italicus informs us, that 
" Avernus was also called Styx. 

" Ille olim populis dictum Styga, nomine verso, 
" Stagna inter celebrem nunc mitia monstrat Avernum." 

" Here Hannibal offered sacrifice to the Manes, as it is recorded 
" by Livy; and Tully aflirms it from an antient Poet, from 
" whom he quotes the following fragment: 

" Inde in vicinia nostra Averni iacus 

" Unde animae excitantur obscura umbra, 

" Alti Acherontis aperto ostio."—^ 

Ver. 125—126. 

" Tunc sic orsa loqui vates: Sate sanguine Divum, 
" Tros Anchisiade, f facilis descensus Averni," etc. 

t " Omnia proclivia sunt; facile descenditur : itaque quam- 
" vis podagricus esset, momento temporis pervenit ad januam 
" Ditis." Seneca, Apoth. Claudii. 

Ver. 140—144. 
" Non ante datur telluris operta subire, 

" Auricomos quam quis decerpserit arbore foetus; 


" Hoc sibi pulchra suum ferri Proserpina munus 
" Instituit. Primo avulso non deficit alter 
" Aureus, et simili frondescit * virga metallo.'" 1 

* Mercury by his Caduceus opens and shuts the gates of hell ; 
and therefore very properly puts a bough or twig into Ulysses's 
hand, when he was goirig into those regions. The power of the 
Divine Rod was grown into a proverb amongst the Romans, as 
appears from Cicero: " Quod si omnia nobis, quae ad victum 
" cultumque pertinent, quasi Virgula Divina (ut aiunt) suppe- 
" ditantur," Offic. lib. I. — The most antient histories, sacred 
and profane, give us sufficient testimonies of the use of the 
Virga, on solemn occasions. 

Ver. 182—188. 
Advolvunt ingentes montibus ornos. 

" Nec non Aeneas opera inter talia primus 

" Hortatur socios, paribusque accingitur armis. 

" Atque haec ipse suo tristi cum corde volutat, 

" Aspectans sylvam immensam, et sic ore precatur: 

" Si # nunc se nobis illo aureus arbore ramus 
" Ostendat nemore in tanto!" 

* The discovery of the Golden Bough, at the same time that 
Aeneas was seeking for timber in the woods for the funeral of 
Nisenus, is artfully interwoven. 

Ver. 203, 204. 

" Gemina super arbore sidunt, 

" Discolor unde auri per ramos * aura refulsit." 

* Ruaeus explains the word Aura by Fulgor. — 

So, possibly, Horace^s 

" Tua ne retardet 
" Aura maritos." Lib. II. Od. viii. 24. 

Ver. 212—216. 

" Nec minus interea Misenum in litore Teucri 
" Flebant, * x et cineri ingrato suprema ferebant. 
" Principio pinguem taedis et robore secto 
" Ingentem struxere pyram: cui frondibus atris 
" Intexunt latera, et * 2 ferales ante cupressos 
" Constituunt." 

*' The solemn funeral of Misenus prepares the mind for the 
descent into hell ; and Virgil likewise takes this opportunity of 
celebrating so remarkable a promontory near his favourite city, 


* 2 Ovid alludes to the same custom, when he says: 

" Funeris ara mihi ferali cincta cupressu 

" Convenit." De Trist. lib. III. El. penult. 

t Dr. Middleton says (Mon. p. 86.), " that it was customary 
" among the Romans, when any great man died, to have a cy- 
" press tree placed on each side of his door ; and when the body 
" was carried out, these were carried after him in the funeral 
" procession. Hence Horace's ; 

" Linquenda tellus, et domus, et placens 
" Uxor: neque harum, quas colis, arborum 

" Te praeter invisas cupressos, 
" Ulla brevem dominum sequetur." Lib. II. Od. xiv. 24. 

Ver. 237—242. 

" f Spelunca alta fuit, vastoque immanis hiatu, 
" Scrupea, tuta lacu nigro nemorumque tenebris ; 
" Quam super haud ullae poterant impune volantes 
" Tendere iter pennis; talis sese halitus atris 
" Faucibus effundens supera ad convexa ferebat; 
" (Unde locum Graii dixerunt nomine Avernum.)" 

f Virgil calls it Spelunca here, and Antrum, 268'posth. He 
describes it as near the lake of Avernus (238, etc), with a wide 
opening (237 et 262), covered with dark woods (238 ;) and a 
dark passage afterwards, 270 — 272. 

" Ad Avernales scopulos et opaca Sibyllae 

« Antra." Stat. Sylv. V. iii. 173. 

" Penitus via longa patescat 

" Manibus egregiis. Eat," etc. Ib. III. iii. 28. 

Statius mentions Baiae, the Tecta Sibyllae, and Misenus's 
Promontory together. Sylv. V. iii. 173. — See ib. IV. iii. 24 
et 133. 

Ovid's description of the Cave of Sleep (Met. XI. 592.), is 
much more like what they call the SibyPs Grot at present, than 
this opening described by Virgil. 

Quaer. Where that place Tacitus speaks of? " Nero, ut 

" erat incredibilium cupitor, effodere proxima Averno juga 
" connixus est; manentque vestigia irritae spei." Annal. 
lib. XV. 

The entrance is more distinctly marked in Silius Italicus, lib. 
XIII. Scipio goes to Autonoe the priestess of Apollo: she tells 
him what sacrifices he is to prepare ; bids him come with them 
just after midnight, " ad fauces vicini Averni," the "• turbida 


" portae ostia Tartareae;" ancl promises to meet him there,and 
cafl forth the Sibyl. When he comes, he finds Autonoe within 
the cave. She performs part of the sacrifice. Scipio sees into 
hell ; and talks with Appius : the Sibyl comes, and tastes the 
blood; and Autonoe goes away. The Sibyl foretells his future 
actions ; describes hell to him ; enables him to know the per- 
sons that taste the blood, and points out others to him. The 
Sibyl returns to the shades, and Scipio to his companions, lin. 

Ver. 243-247. 

" ** Quatuor hic primum nigrantes terga juvencos 
" Constituit, frontique invergit vina sacerdos; 
" Et, summas carpens media inter cornua setas, 
" Ignibus imponit sacris libamina prima, 
" Voce vocans * 2 Hecaten, caeloque Ereboque potentem." 

*' See Mr. Pope's account of the antient sacrifices, in his 
•Remarks on the Odyssey: B. XIV. ver. 469, and other places 
of Homer. 

* 2 Hecate and Diana are the same Deity ; not Proserpina, as 
Ruaeus thinks; which immedfately appears by ver. 251. And 
Statius, in his Balneum Etrusci, Sylv. I. 5. expressly calls 
Diana by the name Hecate. « 

" Hic velox Hecate velit et deprensa lavari:" 

alluding to the story of Actaeon. 

Ver. 249—251. 

Ipse atri velleris agnam 

" Aeneas * matri Eumenidum magnaeque sorori 

" Ense ferit ; sterilemque tibi, Proserpina, vaccam." 

* Silius Italicus, on the like occasion, makes this sacrifice to 
Alecto and Megaera. 

" Inde tibi, Alecto ; tibi, nunquam laeta Megaera," etc. 

Lib. III. 

Ver. 285—289. 

" Multaque praeterea variarum monstra ferarum, 
" Centauri in foribus stabulant, + Scyllaeque biformes; 
" Et centum geminus Briareus, ac Bellua Lernae 
" Horrendum stridens, fiammisque armata Chiunaera : 
" Gorgones, Harpyiaeque, et forma tricorporis umbrae." 

t The word Scyllae is sometimes used for auy thing of a coii- 


fused and imaginary make. — Lucretius speaks of them in the 
same manner : 

" Centauros itaque, et Scyllarum membra videmus, 
" Cerbereasque canum facies." — ■ IV. 737. 

that is, \ve make these odd mixtures of animals in our own 
fancy. He speaks of them again, V. 876—892. 

Ver. 298, 299. 

" Portitor has horrendus aquas et flumina servat 
" Terribili * squalore Charon." 

* Mr. Holdsworth here refers to Note the first, Book XI. 
of Mr. Pope's edition of Homer's Odyssey. Where Mr. Pope 
says ; 

* I will take this opportunity briefly to mention the original 
' of all these fictions of infernal rivers, judges, etc. spoken of 
c b}' Homer, and repeated and enlarged by Virgil. They are 
c of Aegyptian exti-act, as Mr. Sandys (that faithful traveller, 
' and judicious poet) observes, speaking of the mummies of 
' Memphis,' p. 134. 

" These ceremonies performed, they laid the corpse in a boat 
" to be wafted over Acherusia, a lake on the south of Mem- 
" phis, by one only person, whom they called Charon ; which 
" gave Orpheus the invention of his infernal ferryman; an ill- 
" favoured slovenly fellow, as Virgil describes him, Aen. VI. 
" About this lake stood the shady temple of Hecate, with the 
" ports of Cocytus and Oblivion, separated by bars of brass, 
" the original of like fables. When landed on the other side, 
" the bodies were brought before certain judges ; if convinced 
" of an evil life, they were deprived of burial ; if otherwise, 

" they suffered them to be interred." This explication 

shews the foundation of those antient fables of Charon, Rha- 
damanthus, etc. and also that the poets had a regard to truth 
in their inventions, and grounded even their fables upon some 
remarkable customs, which grew obscure and absurd only 
because the memory of the customs to which they allude is lost 
to posterity. 

Veu. 378, 379. 

" * Tua finitimi longe lateque per urbes, 

" Prodigiis acti caelestibus, ossa piabunt." 

* Markland, in his notes on Statius, taking occasion to 
quote these two verses, attacks them in the following furious 
manner — " Qui locus, nisi omnia me fallunt, insigni absurdi- 
" tate foetus est. Si enim Finitimi, quomodo Longe lateque 
" per urbes ? idem ac si dixisset, Finitimi longinque piabunt 


" tua ossa: quod sane mirum ducerem, nisi quod nihil mirum 
" habendum est in poemate tam imperfecto." See Markland^s 
Statius, lib. III. 127. — This critic ought to have been sure 
that this was a blunder in Virgil, not in himself, before he 
brought so severe a charge against him as he does in this place, 
and likewise at the latter end of his preface. For my part I 
see no absurdity in the passage. Virgil makes the Sybil com- 
fort Palinurus by assuring him that the people bordering on 
the shore, where he was murdered, should be persecuted by 
judgments from heaven, throughout all the cities of their terri- 
tories ; and be therefore compelled to expiate his death, and to 
perform his funeral rites, and erect a monument to his memory. 
Supposing Virgil to have said finitimi simply, without any 
other addition, this word, strictly speaking, might have meant 
only the nearest inhabitants ; perhaps a few fishermen in their 
huts : but Virgil is to be understood in a larger sense. All 
Lucania suffered for the death of Palinurus, as appears by the 
passage quoted on this occasion by Mr. Markland from Servius. 
Therefore Finitimi must here mean, not barely the inhabitants 
next immediately adjoining, but the whole people of the ad- 
joining province, who were punished throughout all their dis- 
tricts, far and near, which Virgil expresses by " Longe la- 
" teque per urbes." 

Ver. 412—416. 

Simul accipit alveo 

" Ingentem Aeneam. Gemuit sub pondere cymba 
" Sutilis, et multam accepit rimosa paludem. 
" Tandem trans fluvium incolumes vatemque virumque 
" Informi limo glaucaque exponit in ulva." 

* See Montfaucon, tom. IV. part. II. 1. ii. c. 2. — Leather 
boats are now used in several places in England and Wales, 
and called Coracles. But Lucan tells us, that the boats used 
by the Aegyptians, when the Nile overfloAved, were made of 
Papyrus : 

" Sic cum tenet omnia Nilus, 

" Conseritur bibula Memphitis cymba papyro." 

Lib. IV. 135. 

And as it is generally allowed that the poets in their stories 
concerning the infernal regions alluded to customs in Aegypt, 
it is probable that Virgil chooses the same sort of boat as was 
used on the Nile. 

Ver. 417—423. 

" Cerberus haec ingens latratu regna trifauci 
" Personat, adverso recubans immanis in antro. 


tf Cui vates, horrere videns jam colla colubris, 
" Melle soporatam et medicatis frugibus offam 
" Objicit : ille fame rabida + tria guttura pandens, 
" Corripit objectam ; atque immania terga resolvit 
" Fusus humi, totoque ingens extenditur antro." 

+ So Ovid ; 

" Nec uti villosa colubris 

" Terna Medusaei vincirem guttura monstri." 

Met. X. ver. 22. (of Orpheus). 
And Horace ; 

" Cessit immanis tibi blandienti 

" Janitor aulae 
" Cerberus: quamvis furiale centum 
" Muniant angues caput ejus: atque 
" Spiritus teter, saniesque manet 

" Ore trilingui." 
Lib. III. Od. xi. ver. 2. (of Mercury's great descent into hell). 

He is also represented witb snakes about his neck, in the 
Vatican Virgil. See Pol. pl. XXXVII. i. and XXXVIII. i. 

Ver. 434—437. 
" Proxima deinde tenent moesti loca : qui sibi letum 
" Insontes peperere manu, lucemque perosi 
" * Projecere animas. Quam vellent aethere in alto 
" Nunc et pauperiem et duros perferre labores!" 

* Projicere signifies properly to cast off or throw away as 
vile and contemptible. See Lucan, VI. 626. 

" Corpora caesorum tumulis projecta negatis ;" 

and in many other places. 

Ver. 459—462. 

— — " Per sidera juro, 
" Per superos, et si qua fides tellure sub ima est, 
" Invitus, regina, tuo de litore cessi: 
" Sed me jussa Deum, quae * nunc has lre per umbras, 
" Per loca senta situ cogunt noctemque profundam, 
" Imperiis egere suis." 

* A fine thought is couched here, for this insinuates to Dido, 
that leaving her was hell to him ; and that only those powers 
which sent him hither could have forced him to quit her. 

Ver..770— 579. 

" Continuo sontes ultrix accincta flagello 
" Tisiphone quatit insultans : tortosque sinistra 


" Intentans angues, vocat agmina saeva sororum. 

" # Tum demum horrisono stridentes cardine sacrae 
" Panduntur portae. Cernis, custodia qualk 
" Vestibulo sedeat ? facies quae limina servet ? 
" Quinquaginta atris immanis hiatibus Hydra 
" Y Saevior intus habet sedem : tum Tartarus ipse 
" f s Bis patet in praeceps tantum, tenditque sub umbras; 
" Quantus ad aethereum caeli suspectus Olympum." 

* This break is wrong, Virgil does not intend to open the 
gates of hell to give his hero a view of the horrid scene within, 
as some of the commentators undersland it ; but means, that 
after the criminals are tried and found guilty, they are con- 
ducted by the Furies to the gates, which open to receive them. 
The scene is deseribed by Sibylla. 

f Fiercer than the common Hydra, the Bellua Lernae ; 
which he places without ; " primis in faucibus Orci." Ver. 
273 et 287, anteh. 

t 2 Homer makes it as far from earth to hell downwards, as 
it is upwards from earth to heaven : it has been observed, that 
two of the best Poets since have enlarged it gradually, Virgil 
to twice, and Milton to thrice that depth: but, if I mistake 
not, Hesiod of old has carried the mind further than either of 
them : it would please you to see how exact he is in his mea- 
sures : " An anvil," says he, " will be nine days complete in 
" falling from heaven to earth; and as many ln falling from 

" our earth to Tartarus." 0£oy. ver 722. This is the dis- 

tance from us to the gates of Tartarus only : he afterwards 
carries the mind much farther, in this description : 

" There lie the treasures of the stormy deep 

" Of earth, and water, and extended darkness. 

" A dreadful chasm! squalid and uninform'd, 

" And hateful ev'n to Gods. Whoe'er, within 

" The dreadful op'ning of its gates, should plunge 

" Prone thro' the great abyss; twelve times the course 

" Of the pale moon, should feel its storm and tempest 

" In dire descent ; still hurry'd on precipitate, 

" Amidst the various tumult and confusion 

" Of disagreeing natures. Oft the pow'rs 

" Immortal cast their eyes upon these regions, 

" And shudder at the sight." (=>coy. 744 

From Essay on Mr. Pope's Odyssey ; Evening V. p. 253. 

Ver. 601 — 607. 

" Quid memorem Lapithas, Ixiona, Pirithoiimque ? 
" Quossuper atra silex jamjam lapsura, cadentique 


" Imminet assimilis. Lucent genialibus altis 

" Aurea fulcra toris, epulaeque ante ora paratae 

" Regifico luxu: Furiarum fmaxima juxta 

" Accubat, et manibus prohibet contingere mensas ; 

" Exurgitque facem attollens, atque intonat ore." 

f It appears from Statius, that this Fury (whom Virgil does 
not name) was Megaera. 

" Ultrix tibi torva Megaera 

" Jejunum Phlegyam, subter cava saxa jacentem, 
" Aeterno premit accubitu; dapibusque profanis 
" Instimulat: secl mista famem fastidia vincunt." 

Theb. I. ver. 715. 

Virgil on this occasion calls her Furiarum maxima ; which 
may signify either a chief, or the chief, of the Furies ; but, 
considering her sisters 1 characters (who are, at least, her equals), 
I think it should be taken in the former sense here. 

Ver. 656—659. 

" Conspicit ecce alios dextra laevaque per herbam 
" Vescentes, laetumque choro paeana canentes, 
" Inter t odoratum lauri nemus : unde superne 
" Plurimus Eridani per sylvam volvitur amnis." 

f This is, I think, the most pleasing idea in all Virgil's 
Elysium : aad, possibly, he had an eye in it to the famous valley 
of Tempe in Thessaly, reckoned the most delightful spot in the 
whole world ; and beautified, in particular, by the fall of the 
river Peneus, from mount Pindus ; with woods on each side of 
it. (See Ovid's Met. lib. I. ver. 568 to 572:) 

May I add another conjecture here, which would yet give 
farther beauty to this part in VirgiPs Elysium? It is, that he 
may possibly mean, that the groves on each side of his cascade 
are groves of orange-trees ; and consequently as pleasing in 
their smell as in their look. Orange-trees were first brought 
into Italy in Virgil's time. As they were so lately introduced 
among them, the Romans had as yet no name for them ; and it 
is therefore that Virgil, where he is supposed by some very good 
iudges to speak of this tree in his Georgics, is forced to point 
it out, by a good deal of circumlocution ; and by describing it 
very particularly. It is a tree which, according to his account, 
was brought into Italy from Media, whose fruit had a sharp, 
sour taste ; he says, that it was very good for the stomach and 
breath, and an excellent remedy against infections and poisons ; 
that it was a large tree (as the orange trees are much larger in 
Italy than witli us, and much larger in Media than in Italy) ; 


that the leaf of it was very mucli like the leaf of the laurel ; but 
that it was distinguished from the laurel, by its lasting flowers, 
and by the fine perfume that they cast all around it. (Georg. 
lib. II. ver. 126 to 135.) As they had then no distinct name 
for orange-trees, Virgil may here call them laurels, from their 
likeness to that tree ; but, at the same time, he takes care to 
distinguish tliem from the common laurel, by mentioning the 
most striking character of them, their fine smell : " Odoratum 
" lauri nemus." 

Veb. 660-665. 

" Hic manus, ob patriam pugnando vulnera passi ; 
" Quique sacerdotes casti, dum vita manebat ; 
" Quique pii vates et Phoebo digna locuti ; 
" Inventas aut qui vitam excoluere per artes ; 
" Quique sui memores alios fecere merendo : 
" Omnibus his niveu cinguntur tempora * vitta." 

* Canini, in his Iconografia, plate xxvn, on Homer's medals, 
observes thus: " Tiene il capello ligato da una fascia. — Era 
" questa fascia di lana candida, come si comprende dalle parole 
" di Platone quando vuole che nella sua republiea non si riceva 
" il Poeta ; ma si bene, come cosa maravigliosa s'honori, spar- 
" gendovi sopra il capo unguenti odoriferi e coronandoli di 
" lana. Unguentum in caput ejus eftundentes, lanaque coro- 
" nantes." And then adds, " Virgilio dice portarsi questa 
" candida banda in segno di celeste honore :" and quotes these 
verses; " Quique Sacerdotes," etc. 

Ver. 719— 721. 

" O pater, anne aliquas ad caelum hinc ire putandum est 
" Sublimes animas ? iterumque ad tarda reverti 
" Corpora? quae t lucis miseris tam dira cupido ?" 

f This may shew that Virgil had nobler notions of life and 
death than Homer ; as Lucan has nobler than either of them. 

Ver. 724—727. 

" * Principio caelum, ac terras, camposque liquentes, 
" Lucentemque globum Lunae, Titaniaque astra 
" Spiritus intus alit ; totamque infusa per artus 
" Mens agitat molem, et magno se corpore miscet." 

* See Dr. Trapp's excelleut remarks on this place, ver. 933 
of his translation. 

222 on the aeneids. 

Ver. 756-759. 
" * Nunc age, Dardaniam prolem quaedeinde sequatur 
" Gloria, qui maneant Itala de gente nepotes, 
" Illustres animas, nostrumque in nomen ituras, 
" Expediam dictis, et te tua fata docebo." 

* See Dr. Trapp^s note on this place, to which may be added 
what I have observed, Georg. III. ver. 27. 

Ver. 830—835. 

" *' Aggeribus socer Alpinis, atque arce * 2 Monoeci 
" Descendens, gener adversis instructus Eois! 
" Ne, pueri, ne tanta animis assuescite bella : 
" Neu patriae validas in viscera vertite vires. 
" Tuque * 3 prior, tu parce, genus qui ducis Olympo : 
" Projice tela manu, sanguis meus." — 

*' Aggeribus, very properly; the Alpes being always 
looked upon as the ramparts of Italy. So Tully, in Orat. m 
L. Pisonem, calls them Alpium vallum; and Philippica 5ta, 
Alpium murum. " Ejus furorem ne Alpium quidem muro 
" prohibere possemus." 

* 2 See Lucan's description, lib. I. ver. 405. 

Lucan does not explain where Caesar passed the Alpes when 
he went from Gaul to the Rubicon ; he only says in short, 
lib. I. ver. 183, 

" Jam gelidas Caesar cursu superaverat Alpes." 

But it is pretty evident from other places in Lucan, that the 
passes of the Maritimae Alpes, that is, the passes between 
Provence and Italy, were known to J. Caesar; for when he 
marched from Italy into Spain, after Pompey's retirement 
from Brundusium, he passed the Alpes, and came directly to 

" Agmine nubiferam rapto superevolat Alpem : 
" Cumque alii famae populi terrore paverent, 
" Phocais in dubiis ausa est servare juventus 

" Non Graia levitate fidem," etc. 

Lucan. lib. III. 299. 

A very noble trophy was raised to Augustus at Torbia near 
Monaco ; of which see an account in Theatre des Etats du 
Duc de Savoye, vol. II. The ruins of this trophy are still 
seen on a hill about three miles above Monaco, and are very 
considerable ; appearing, as one sees them at a little distance 
from sea, like the Torre Magne at Nismes. 


Caesar himself tells us in his Commentaries, at the end of 
the first book of the Civil War, that after his conquest of 
Petreius and Afranius, he sent his army into Italy by the river 
Var: " Ex Hispania ad Variun flumen est iter factum." De 
Bell. Civ. lib. I. From whence the road goes through the ter- 
ritory of the Prince of Monaco. 

* 3 We are informed by History, that, before the Civil War 
actually broke out, Caesar offered, by his friends at Rome, and 
by letters to the Senate, to lay down his command, upon con- 
dition that Pompey was obliged to do the same. See Appian, 
de Bell. Civ. lib. II. from p. 735 to 740. edit. Tollii. See 
likewise Plutarch's Lives of Caesar and Pompey. N. B. Ap- 
pian tells us, that when Caesar had passed the Rubicon after 
his proposals were rejected ; " Senatus nec opinata impressione 
" Caesaris territus, ut imparatus, sibi metuebat, non admissa- 
" rum Caesaris conditionum aequissimarum tum demum poeni- 
" tens, postquam timor a contentione eos ad recta consilia tra- 
«' duxerat." p. 740. 

Ver. 841, 842. 

" Quis te, magne Cato, tacitum; aut te, Cosse, relinquat? 
*' Quis Gracchi genus? aut geminos, duo f fulmina belli, 
" Scipiadas?" 

•f There is perhaps no one word in the whole Roman lan- 
guage, whose signification is more distinctly determined by 
their antient writers themselves, than that of the word Ful- 
men. One could give several absolute definitions of it. in their 

own words. " Si ln nube luctetur flatus aut vapor, toni- 

'* trua edi ; si erumpat ardens, fulmina ; si longiore tractu ni- 
" tatur, fulgetra." Plin. Nat. Hist. lib. II. c. xliii. 

'* Quum autem se in nubem induerint, ejusque tenuissimam 
" quamque partem coeperint dividere ac disrumpere, idque 
" crebrius facere et vehementius, tum et fulgores et tonitrua 
" existere: si autem nubium conjiictu ardor expressus se emi- 
" serit, id esse fulmen" Cicero, de Divin. lib. II. § 64. 

" Isrneus ille 

" Vortex, quod patrio vocitamus nomine fulmen." 

Lucretius, VI. ver. 297. 

When we are taught (as we generally are) to translate the 
word Fulmen by the word Thunder, we use a word that is apt 
to give an idea of noise, without any idea of the light, for a 
Latin word which gave an idea of light, without any idea of 
the noise. 

This mistake is very apt to make people lose the beauty of 
several passages in the old Roman writers ; as, for instance, 


where Clcero speaks of the " fulmina verborum," or Virgil 
calls the two Scipios the " duo fulmina belli." 

The meaning of Virgil in this expression is opened to us, 
more at large, in a simile of Lucau's ; which, by the way, is 
one of the best, perhaps, in the whole Pharsalia. It is where 
he is giving us the character of Julius Caesar, toward the 
opening of that poem. 

" Acer, et indomitus, quo spes quoque ira vocasset 
" Ferre manum ; et nunquam temerando parcere ferro ; 
'* Successus urgere suos, instare favori 
" Numinis, impellens quicquid sibi summa petenti 
" Obstaret; gaudensque viam fecisse ruina. 
" Qualiter expressum ventis per nubila fulmen 
" Aetheris impulsi sonitu mundique fragore 
" Emicuit, rupitque diem ; populosque paventes 
" Terruit, obliqua praestinguens lumina flamma : 
" In sua templa furit ; nullaque exire vetante 
" Materia, magnamque cadens magnamque revertens 
" Dat stragem late, sparsosque recolligit ignes." 

Lib. I. ver. 157. 

Where Mr. Pope makes use of the same image to point out 
the particular character of the late Earl of Peterborough ; 

" He, whose lightning pierc'd th' Iberian lines;" 

how much of the beauty and justice of it would have been lost, 
had he used the word thunder, instead of the word he has 
used ? 

Ver. 847—853. 

" f Excudent alii spirantia mollius aera, 

Credo equidem ; vivos ducent de marmore vultus ; 

Orabunt causas melius ; caelique meatus 
" Describent radio, et surgentia sidera dicent : 
lt Tu reo-ere imperio populos, Romane, memento ; 
" Hae tibi erunt artes ; pacisque imponere morem ; 

Parcere subjectis, et debellare superbos." 

f The Romans did not stick at owning, that the Greeks ex- 
ceeded them in all the polite arts, and in every branch of lite- 
rature. This passage is a remarkable proof of it ; and one 
might load several pages with others from their writers both in 
verse and prose. — The Roman arts were the arts of war and 
government. " Ego Romanis artibus, virtute, opere, armis, 
" vincam," says Camillus to the Schoolmaster of Falisci : Liv. 

lib. V. ^ xxvii. " Ut virtutis a nostris, sic doctrinae sunt 

ab illis exempla repetenda:" Cic. de Orat. lib. III. § cxxxvi. 


Ver. 872— «74. 

" Quantos ille viriim magnam Mavortis ad urbem 
" Campus aget gemitus ! vel cjuae, Tiberine, videbis 
" Funera, cum f tumulum praeterlabere * recentem !" 

t Part of the sepulchre, in which the ashes of Marcellus 
were deposited (and which was built by Augustus, for Julius 
Caesar, himself, and the rest of his family), is still remaining. 
It stands in the Campus Martius, near the banks of the Tyber ; 
and when one sees it, puts one strongly in mind of these verses 
of Virgil, where he speaks of the funeral of that prince. It 
is what they now call the Mausoleum Augusti. 

* " Tumulum recentem ;" the Mausoleum lately built by 
Augustus for his familv. Suetonius says ; " Id opus inter Fla- 
" miniam viam ripamque Tyberis sexto suo consulatu extruxe- 
" rat." Marcellus died in the llth Consulship of Augustus ; 
and was probably the first of the family, who took possession 
of this noble Mausoleum ; as appears by the following epi- 
gram, quoted by Nardini : 

" Condidit Agrippam, quo te, Marcelle, sepulcro, 
" Et cepit generos jam locus iste duos," etc. 

This occasioned the epithet Reeentem, See the description 

of this Mausoleum by Strabo. 

Ver. 893—896. 

" Sunt geminae Somni * portae : quarum altera fertur 
" Cornea, qua veris facilis datur exitus umbris : 
" Altera, candenti perfecta nitens elephanto ; 
" Sed falsa ad caelum mittunt insomnia Manes." 

* Statius mentions the gates of hell at the end of his Epic^- 
dion ad Patrem : 

" Inde tamen venias melior, qua porta malignum 
•• Comea vincit ebur ; Somnique in imagine monstra. 
" Quae solitus." Sylv. lib. V. iii. 288. 






Our subject having necessarily engaged us in a large historical 
account of the Mysteries ; yet the form of the discourse not 
having afforded us an opportunity hitherto to take notice of 
their Shews and Representations, one of the rnost important 
parts of the Mysteries, and the onlv one remaining unspoken 
to ; Virgil, in affording us a fresh proof of the sentiments of 
the best and wisest anaongst the anlients, concerning the service 
of the doctrine of a future state to society, will give us the 
opportunity we sought for : so that nothing will now be want- 
ing to a thorough intelligence of this curious and interesting 
circumstance of antiquity. 

We hope, then, to make it very evident, that the masterpiece 
of the Aeneis, the famous sixth book, is nothing else but a 
description, and so designed by the author, of his hero's initia- 
tion into the Mysteries; and of one part of the Spectacles of 
the Eleusinian: where every thing was done in shew and 
machinery ; and where a representation of the history of Ceres 
afforded opportunity of bringing in the scenes of Heaven, Hell, 
Elysium, Purgatory, and all that related to the future state of 
men and heroes. 

But to make this, which hath at first sight so much the air of 
a paradox, the less shocking, it will not be improper to inquire 
into the nature of the Aeneis. 

Homer's two poems had each a plain simple story, to convev 
as simple a moral ; and in this kind he is justly esteemed excet- 
lent. Virgil could make no improvements here : the Greek 
poet was complete and perfect ; so that the patrons of the 



Roman, and even Scaliger himself, are confined to seek for 
his superior advantages in his episodes, descriptions, similes, 
and in the chastity and correction of his thoughts and dic- 
tion; while all have overlooked the principal advantage he 
had over his great predecessor. He found the Epic Poem in 
possession of the first rank of human compositions; but thisdid 
not satisfy his large ambition : he was not content that its subject 
should be to instruct the world in morals, much less in physics, 
which was the ridiculous imagination of someantients, thoughhe 
was fond of those inquiries, but aspired to make it a system of 
Politics. Accordingly the Aeneis is indeed as much suchin verse, 
by example, as the republics of Plato and Tully were in prose, 
by precepts. Thus he advanced the Epic to a new state of per- 
fection; and as Paterculus says of Menander, — " inveniebat, ne- 
" que imitandum relinquebat." For though everyonesaw that 
Augustus was shadowed out in the person of Aeneas, yet imagin- 
ing those political instructions, which were designed for the ser- 
vice of mankind at large, to be for the sole use of his master, they 
missed of its true nature: and in this ignorance, the succeeding 
epic writers, following a poem whose genius they did not un- 
derstand, wrote worse than if they had only taken Homer, and 
his simple plan for their guides. A great modern Poet, and 
best judge of their merit, assures us of this fact ; and what 
we have said helps to explain it : " The other epic poets," says 
this justly admired writer, ■* have used the same practice (that 
** of Virgil, of running two fables into one) but generally 
" carried it so far as to superinduce a multiplicity of fables, 
*' destroy the unity of action, and lose their readers in an un- 
" reasonable length of time. a " 

Such was the revolution Virgil brought about in this no- 
blest region of poetry ; an improvement so great, that the sub- 
blimest genius had need of all the assistance the best poet could 
lend him : nothing less than the joint aid of the Iliad and 
Odyssey being able to furnish out the execution of his great 
idea: for a system of politics delivered in the example of a 
great prince, must shew himin every public circumstance of life. 
Hence was Aeneas, of necessity, to be found voyaging with 
Ulysses, and fighting with Achilles : and I am persuaded, that 
that great admirer of Virgil, and best imitator of his correct- 
ness, last quoted, will be pleased to find this the case, rather 
than what he assigns for his master's conduct, in the following 
words: " Virgil, for want of so warm a genius, aided himself by 
" taking in a more extensive subject, as well as a greater length 
" of time, and contracting the design of both Homer's poems 
« into one V 

a Preface to the lliad of Homer. 
b See the same Preface. 


But if the improved nature of liis subject necessitated him to 
violate that simplicity in the fable which Aristotle, and his in- 
terpreter Bossu, find so divine in Homer c ; he gained consider- 
able advantagesby it in other circumstances of the composition : 
For now, those ornaments and decorations, for whose insertion 
the critics could give no other reasons than raising the dignity 
of the poem, become necessarily inherent in the subject. Thus 
the choice of princes and heroes for actors of the scene, which 
were, before, only to grace it, now constitute the essence of 
the Poem d : and the machinery and intervention of the Gods, 
on every occasion, which were to create the marvellous, become, 
in this improvement, an indispensable part of the action. It is 
in the very spirit of antient legislation, as we find in the begin- 
ning of tliis book, where we see the principal care of the Law- 

iver was to possess the people with the belief of a Providence. 

his then is the true reason of so much machinery in the Aeneis ; 
for whichmodern critics accuse the author of wantof iudo-ment; 
as following Homer too closely m a poem wrote ia the refined 
and enlightened age of Rome e . An excellent writer, and one 
who ought never to be mentioned but in terms of the highest 
esteem, speaking of the marvellous in Virgil: says, " If there be 
" any instance in the Aeneid liable to exception upon this account, 
" it is in the beginning of the third book, where Aeneas is repre- 
" sented as tearing up the myrtle that droppedblood. This cir- 
" cumstance seems to have the marvellous without the probable, 
" because it is represented as proceeding from natural causes 
" without the interposition of any God, or rather supernatural 
" power capable of producing it f ." But when this amiable wri- 
ter made this remark, he appears not to have recollected what 
Aeneas says on the occasion : 

" Nymphas venerabar agrestes, 
" Gradivumque patrem, Geticis qui praesidet arvis, 
" Rite secundarent visus, omenque levarent." 

c Nous ne trouverons point, dans la Fable de 1' Eueide, cette simplieite qu" 
Aristote a trouvee si divine dans Homere. — Traite du Poeme Bpique. 1. 1. c 11. 

'' " Le retour," says Bossu . " d"un homme en sa maison, et la querelle 

'• de deux autres, n'ayant rien degrand en soi, deviennent desactions illustres et 
'• importantes, lorsque dans le choix des noms, le Poete dit que c'est Ulvsse qai 
" retourne en Ithaque, et que c'est Achille et Ajramemnon qui querellent." — He 
gocs on — " Mais il y a des actions qui d'elles memes sont tres importantes, 
" comme Ppst.ablissement, ou /a ruineiVun etat.ou iVune Reliqion. Telle est donc 
" Paction de 1'Eneide, 1. 2. c. 19." Ile saw here a remarkable difierence in the 
subjects: it is strange this should not have led him to see that the Aeneis is of a 
different species. 

'- Ce qui est beau dans Homere pourroit avoir £te mal reeti dans les ouvrages 
d'un Poete du tems d'Auguste. Idem, ib. 1. 3. c. 8. De Cadmirable. 

f Mr. Addison's Works,vol. 3. p. 316. quarto edition, 1721. 


Now these kind of omens, for there were two sorts 5 , were 
always supposed to be produced by the intervention of a super- 
natural power ; as was the raining of blood so frequently related 
by the Roman annalists. And the Poet was certainly within the 
bounds of the probable, while he told no more than what the 
gravest historians recorded in every page of their annals. But 
this was not done to make us stare. He is, as we observe, in a 
legislativecapacity,and writes to possess the people of the inter- 
position of the Gods, in omens and prodigies; which was in the 
method of the old Lawgivers. So Plutarch, as quoted above, tells 
us that " with divinations and omens Lycurgus sanctified the 
" Lacedaemonians, Numa the Romans, Ion the Athenians, and 
" Deucalion all the Greeks in general ; and by hopes and fears 
" kept up in them the awe and reverence of Religion." The 
scene of this adventure is laid, with the utmost propriety, on 
the uncivilized, inhospitable shores of Thrace, to inspire horror 
for barbarous manners, and an inclination and appetite for 
civil policy. 

On this account itis that our Poet here deserts the Mytholo- 
gists, and makes the age of civil Policy, (the time when men 
were first brought out of a state of nature) the golden age, 
and Saturn to govern in it. Thus Evander says, (Lib. 8.) 

" Haec nemora indigenae fauni nymphaeque tenebant — 
" Queis neque mos, neque cultus erat ; neque jungere tauros, 
" Aut componere opes norant, aut parcere parto: 
" Sed rami atque asper victu venatus alebat. 
" Primus ab aethcrio venit Saturnus Olympo, — 
" Is genus indocile, ac dispersum montibus altis, 
" Composuit legesque dedit." 

s Ulysses, in Homer, menlions both these sorts in the following lines: 

Z-y; WKTip^ £<' /yt.' 

i'/ifi-/iv <n; f/,oi (pd<r0u lytipo/itvuv uvfydtfwv 
"EvfroHtv, 'ixrtxrhv ?; Aio; ripa; «XXo <pu.vnrco. 

But tobe more particular, and esact; the word Omen in its proper sense signifies 
" futurae rei signum, quod ex sermone loquentis capitur." Tullv says, 1. 1. 
Divin. " Pythagorei non solum voces deorum observarunt, sed etiam hominum 
" quae vocant Omina.'' This sort of Omen v>as supposed to depend much upon 
the will of the person concerned in it. Hence thejplirases " accepii omen,[arripuit 
" omen." This, as we say, was its primary and proper signification. It was 
afterwards applied to things, as well as words. So Paterculus speaking of the 
head of Sulpicius, on the rostrum, says it was " velut omen imminentis proscrip- 
" tionis." And Suetonius of Augustus, " Auspicia quaedam et omina pro certis- 
" simis observabat- Si mane sibi calceus perperam, ac sinister pro dextero in- 
" duceretur.ut dirum :" It was used still in a larger sense, to signifv an Augury, 
as by TuUy tle div. 1.1. 

" Sic aquilae clarum firmavit Jupiter omen." 
And lastlv in the most generical sense of all, for a prodigy in general, as in the 
place before us. From hence ifappears, as we said above, that Omens were of 
two sorts, the proper and improper; the proper sorl was supposed to be natural ; 
the improper sort, supernatural. But the Omen in question is of the latter kind. 


Whereas Ovid, who speaks the sense of tlie Mythologists, 
makes the golden age to be the state >>fnature, and Saturn to 
^overn there, before the ereetion of civil policy. 

" Aurea prima sata estaetas, quae, vindice nullo, 

" Sponte sua sine lege fidem rectumque colebat. 
" Poena metusquc aberaut: nec verba Minacia Fixo 
" Aere legebantur ; nec supplex turba timebant 

" Judicis ora sui. 

" Ipsa quoque immunis rastroque intacta, nec ullis 
" Saucia vomeribus, per se dabat omnia tellus: 
" Contentique cibis nullo cogente creatis, 
" Arbuteos foetus, montanaque fragra legebant, 
" Cornaque et in duris haerentia mora rubetis, 
" Et quae deciderant patula Jovis arbore glandes. 

" Ver erat aeternum 

" Postquam Saturno tenebrosa in Tartara misso. — 

" Tum primum subiere domos. — 

" Semina tum primum longis Cerealia sulcis 

" Obruta sunt, pressique jugo gemuere juvenciV 

For it served the grave purpose of the philosophic poet to 
decry the state of nature; and it suited the fanciful paintino-s 
of the mvthologic poet to recommend it. 

But everything in this poem poinrs to great and public ends. 
The turning the ships into sea-deities in the TXth book, has the 
appearance of something infinitely more extravagant, than the 
myrtle dropping blood, and has been more generailv and se- 
verely censured ; and, indeed, if defended, it must be"on other 
principles. The philosophic commentators on Homer's poem, 
had brought the fantastic refinement of allegory into oreat 
vogue. We may estimate the capacity of VirgiPs jud^ment 
in not catching at so alluring a bait, by observing that some of 
the greatest of modern epic poets, who approached nearest to 
Virgil in genius, have been betrayed by it. Yet, here and there, 
our poet, to convey a political precept, has employed an incre- 
nious allegory in passing. And the adventure in question is, I 
think, of this number. By the transformation of the ships into 
sea-deities, he would insinuate, I suppose, the great advantao-e 
of cultivating a naval power ; such as extended commerce, 
and the dominion of the ocean; which in poetical language, is 
becoming: deities of the sea. 

" Mortalem eripiam formam, magnique jubebo 
" Aequoris esse Deas." 

He explains the allegory more clearly in the following book, 

h Metam. Lib. ]. 


where he makes these transformed sea-nymphs accompany 
Aeneas, and his fleetof auxiliaries, through the Tyrrhene sea. 

" Atque illi medio in spatio chorus, ecce, suarum 
" Occurrit comitum ; nymphae, quas alma Cybele, 
" Numen habere maris, nymphasque e navibus esse 

" Jusserat. 

" Agnoscunt longe regem, lustrantque choreis." 

This ministerial hint was the more important and seasonable, 
as all Octavius's traverses, in his way to empire, were from his 
want of a sufficient naval power ; first, in his war with Brutus 
and Cassius, and afterwards with Sextus, the son of Pompey the 
Great. Nor was it at this time less fiattering to Augustus; to 
whomthe Alexandrians erected a magnincent temple, porticoes, 
and sacred groves; where he was worshipped under the title of 
Caesar, the Protector and Patron of Sailors, So he became a 
sea-god at the head of these goddesses. For, as one of his flat- 
terers said — 

" Praesenti tibi maturos largimur honores: 
" Jurandasque tuum per nomen ponimus aras." 

As the not taking the true scope of the Aeneis, has occasioned 
mistakes, to VirgiFs disadvantage, concerning the Plan and 
Conduct ofthe Poem ; so hath it likewise concerning the cha- 
racters. The piety of Aeneas, and his high veneration for the 
Gods,, so much offends a celebrated French writer ', that he says 
" the hero was fitter to found a Religion than a Monarchy." 
But he did not know that the image of a perfect Lawgiver is 
held out t.o us in Aeneas ; and had he known that, he had per- 
haps been ignorant, that it was the ofiice of such to found Reli- 
gions and Colleges of Priests, as well as States and Corpora- 
tions. And that Virgil tells us this was his, 

" Dum conderet Urbem, 
" Inferretque Deos Latio." 

But his humanity as much offeWs our Critic as his piety, 
and he calls him a mere St. Swithin, always raining. The 
beauty of this representation escaped him. It was neces- 
sary to shew a perfect Lawgiver as touched with all the affec- 
tions of humanity ; and the example was the more to be en- 
forced, because we experience vulgar Politicians but too much 
divested of these common notices. Nor is the view in which 
we place this Poem, less serviceable to the vindication of his 
other characters. The learned author of the inquiry into 
the Life and Writings of Homer, who hath now first initiated 

' Monsieur De St. Evremont . 

op tiu: sivrn AENEID of viugil. '-235 

us into the mvsteries of tho Greek Poet, will forgive me for 
differing from him, in thinking that that uniformity of manners 
in the Aeneis was the efiect of design, not, as he would have 
it, of custom and habit : " Virgil," says he, " had seen much 
" of the splendour of a Court, the magnificence of a Palace, 
" and the grandeur of a Royal Equipage: accordingly his re- 
" presentations of that part of life, are more august ahu stately 
" than Homer's. He has a greater regard to decency, and those 
" polished manners, that render men so much of a piece, and 
" make them all resemble one another in their conduct and be- 
" haviourV For tliis work being a system of Politics, the 
eternity of a government, the form of a magistrature, and plan 
of dominion being, as this fine Writer observes, familiar with the 
Roman Poet,nothing coukl be more to his purpose, than thisre- 
presentation of polished manners : it being the LegisIator's office 
to tame and breakmen to humanity ; and to make themdisguise 
at least, if they cannot be brought to lay aside their savage 

But this key to the Aeneis not only clears up a great many 
passages obnoxious to the critics, but adds, an infinite beauty 
to a vast number of incidents throughout the whole poem. 

Permit me only to observe, that this was the second species of 
the Epic poem;- our own countryman, the great Milton, having 
produced the third: for just as Virgil rivalled Homer, so 
Milton emulated them both. He found Homer possessed of the 
province of Moralitv ; Virgil of Politics; and nothing left for 
him but that of Religion. This he seized, as aspiring to share 
with them in the government of the poetic world. And, by 
means of the superior dignity of his subject,he hath got to the 
head of that Triumvirate which took so many ages in forming. 
These are the three species of the Epic Poem ; for its largest 
province is human action, which can be considered but in a 
moral, a political, or religious view ; and these the three 
great Creators of them; for each of these Poems was struck out 
at a heat, and came to perfection from its first essay. Here 
then the graud scene is closed, and all further improvements of 
the Epic at an end. 

It being granted then, that the Aeneis is in tlie style of an- 
tient legislation, it is hard to think so great a master in his art 
would overlook a doctrine, that we have sliewn, was the foun- 
dation and support of antient politics ; namely, tnat of a future 
state of Rewards and Punishments. Accordingly, in imitation 
of his models, Plato andTulIy,in their Vfsionof Erus and Dream 
of Scipio, he hath given us a complete system of it. Again, as the 
Legislator took care to support this doctrine by a very extraor- 

k Page 325. 


clinarv institution and commeinorated it therein, with all the 
ponip of spectacle; we cannot but confess a descriptioiLof 
those Shews would add a peculiar grace and elegance to 
the poem ; and that the pomp and solemnity of the representa- 
tions would be apt to invite him to attempt it, as affording 
matter for all the embellishments of poetical description. Ac- 
cordingly we say, he hath done this likewise ; and, that the 
descent of Aeneas into Hell, is no other, than an enigmatical 
representation ofhis initiation into the Mysteries. 

Virgil, in this poem, was to represent a perfect Lawgiver, in 
the person of Aeneas; but initiation into the Mysteries was what 
sanctified his character and function. For it was no wonder 
that the Legislator should endeavour by his own example, to 
ennoble an institution that was of his own creating : accord- 
ingly, we find all the antient Heroes and Legislators were 

There was another reason for the Legislator's initiation, 
which held particularly with regard to the Greek Legislator's 
participation of the Egyptian Mysteries, and that was the im- 
portant instructions he there received in matters of the highest 
moment concerning mankind, as we may see in the second Sec- 
tion of the third Book 1 . 

Now all this the Poet seems clearly to have intimated in the 
speech Anchises's Shade makes to his son. 

" Lectos Juvenes, fortissima corda, 

" Defer in Italiam. Gens dura atcpie aspera cultu 
" Debellanda tibi Latio est. Ditis tamen ante 

" Infernas accede domos 

" — Huc casta Sibylla 
" Nigrarum multo pecudum te sanguine ducet, 
" Tumgenus omne tuum,et, quae dentur moenia disces m ." 

While the Mvsteries were confined to their native country, 
Egvpt ; and while the Greciau Legislators went thither for ini- 
tiation, as a kind of designation to their ofnce; the ceremony 
would naturally be spoken of in high allegorical terms. The 
^enius of the Egyptian manners partly contributed thereto ; 
much more the humour of travellers ; but most of all the arts 
of Legislators ; who, returning into their own country, to 
civilize a barbarous people by Laws and Arts, found it very 
profitable for themselves, and necessary for thepeople, in order 
to raise their own characters, and to establish the fundamental 
principle of a future state, to represent that initiation, in which 
they saw the state of departed mortals represented in ma- 
chinery, as an actual descent into Hell. Thus did Orpheus, 

1 Page 312—3. m Aen.V. v. 729, etseq. 


Bacchus, and others. And this way of apeaking continued even 
after the Mysteriea were introdnced into Greece, as appeara by 
the Fables "of Hercules's, Castor and Pollux^s, and Theseus's 
descent into Hell. But the aUegory generally carried some- 
thing with it that discovered the truth conveyed under it. So 
Orpheus is said to get to Hell by the power of his harp: 

" ThreTcia fretus cithara, fidibusque canoris:" 

Which plainlv declares it to be in qnality of Legislator: the 
Harp being the known symbol of his Laws, by which he hu- 
manized a rude and barbarous people. Again, in the lives of 
Hercules and Bacchus, we have the true History, and the 
Fable founded on it, recorded together. For we are told, 
that they were in fact initiated into the Eleusinian Mysteries ; 
and tliat it was just before their Descent into Hell, as an aid 
and security in that desperate atteinpt n . Which, in plain 
speech, was no more than that they could not safely see the 
Shews till they were initiated. Again, near Eleusis there was 
a well called Callichorus; and, adjoining to that, a Stone, on 
which, as the tradition went, Ceres sat down, sad and weary, 
on her coming to Eleusis. Hence the Stone was named Age- 
lastus, the Melancholy Stone°: so Ovid, 

" Hic primum sedit gelido moestissima Saxo, 
" Illud Cecropidae nunc quoque triste vocant.*" 

On which account it was unlawful for the initiated to sit upon 
that Stone. " For Ceres," savs Clemens, " wandering about 
" in search of her daughter Proserpine, when she came to 
" Eleusis, grew weary, and sat down melancholv on the side 
" of a well. On which account, to this verv day, it is un- 
" lawful for the initiated tO sit down there, lest they who are 
" now become perfect should seero to imitate her in her deso- 
" late condition ''." Mov\ 1<m ns ->>. vvlial rhei t»->ll us cohcern- 
ing Theseus's Descent inr<> Hell. — •■ There is also a Stone," 
says fche scholiast on A ristophanes, " called bv the Atheniahs. 
'-* Agelastus ; on which, they sav, Theseus <h\ vvhen he was 
" meditatihg his Descent into Hell. Hence the Stone had its 
" name. Or perhaps because Ceres sat there weeping when 
" she sought rroserpine V This Tradition, methinks, plainlv 

n — K«; raus itioi RgaxXiu n xv.i Sievuo-ov, koTiiovJu; ei; uhav, zroenoev Xoyo; \v6oi0i ftv>,- 
ir.vut, xui re §doo-o; rr.; \xuat zroouu; zxu^u r~,; 'EXiu<rivia; huvo~a<r(at. Auctor Axiochi. 

° '; -zzirou- 

P ' KXoifLivr, yuo r, A/foj xa[u Z,f,?r.o-rv r~; 3vyu'lee; -.~; xoqt,;, ■s>'.Bt rr,v '~~Xluo-~va aofo- 
kuuvii, xui Qpiurt l-racah^U Xuxouuivr,. Tovre ro~i; /; u-—uyeoiu'irui ilo-iri vuv, 
iva ur, ioxohv 01 ■ririXio-u.ivot fitft.uo-6ut r~v oluoofeivrv. Cleniens Protrep- 

1 ~~?t di xui ' Ayi/.xro; zririu xuXou/uivn izuiu ro~; .Ktr.vuiet;. e~ou xuSicrui tpuzi l Sr,7iu 
fttXXovra xuruSuiviiv 11; aSov. "hv xat -rouvofzu r~ —rirsu. '}; en \ku \.^u'.7i. r, -a.ur.rra 
xXaieue-z, ercv i^ r>:. -.,..:. Schol. Eqtlit. /WiStOph. 1. 7Si. 


intimates that the descent of Theseus was his entrance into the 
Eleusinian Mysteries ; and that this entrance wa9 a fraudulent 
unlawful intrusion, as we shall shew hereafter it indeed was. 

Both Euripides and Aristophanes seem to confirm our inter- 
pretation of this Descent into Hell. Euripides, in his Her- 
cules Furens, brings the Hero, just come from Hell to succour 
his family, and destroy the tyrant Lycus. In revenge of 
this, Juno persecutes him with the Furies ; and, in his rage, 
he kills his wife and children, mistaldng them for enemies. 
When he comes to. himself, he is consolated by his friend The- 
seus ; who would excuse him by the criminal examples of the 
Gods : a thing, which as I have observed above, mightily en- 
couraged the people in their irregularities ; and was therefore 
provided against in the Mysteries, by the detection of the 
errors of Polytheism. Now Euripides seems plainly enough 
to have told us what he thought of the fabulous Descents into 
Hell, by making Hercules reply like one just come from the 
Celebration of the Mysteries, and intrusted with the dKopp-rfla. 
" The Examples," says he, " which you bring of the Gods, 
" are nothing to the purpose. I cannot think them guilty of 
" the crimes imputed to them. I cannot apprehend how one 
" God can be the sovereign of another God. — A God, who is 
" truly so, stands in need of no one. Reject we then these 
" ridiculous fables, which the Poets teach concerning them.'* 
The comic Poet, in his Frogs, hath shewn us plainly what he 
understood by the ancient Hero's Descent into Hell, in the 
equipage he gives Bacchus, when he brings him inquiring the 
way of Hercules. We are to observe then, that it was the 
custom, as we are told by the Scholiast on the place, at the 
celebration of the Eleusinian Mysteries, to have what was 
wanted in those rites, carried on asses. Hence the proverb, 
" Asinus portat Mysteria :" accordingly, the Poet introduces 
Bacchus, followed by his buffoon servant Xanthius bearing a 
bundle in like manner, and riding on an ass. And lest the 
meaning of this should be mistaken, on Hercules's telling Bac- 
chus that the inhabitants of Elysium were the initiated, Xan- 
thius puts in, and says, " and I am the Ass carrying Myste- 
" ries." 

Here then, as was the case in many other of the antient 
fables, the pompousness of the expression betrayed willing 
posterity into the miraculous. But why need we wonder at it, 
in the genius of ancient times, which delighted to tell the com- 
monest things in a highly iigurative and uncommon manner ; 
when a writer of so late an age as Apuleius, either in imitation 
of antiquity, or rather, according to the received phraseology 
of the Mysteries, describes his initiation in this manner : " Ac- 
" cessi confjnium mortis; et calcato Proserpinae limine, per 


" omnia vectus elementa remeavi : nocte media vidi solem can- 
" dido coruscantem lumine, Deos inferos et Deos supe.ros. 
" Accessi coram, et adoravi de proximo r." Aeneas could not 
have described his night's journey after he had been let out of 
the Ivory Gate, to his companions in other terms, had it been 
indeed a journey into Hell. 

We see then, Virgil was obliged to have his hero initiated ; 
and that he had the authority of fabulous antiquity to call this 
initiation a Descent into Hell. And surely he made use of his 
advantage with great judgment; for this fiction animates the 
relation, that, delivered without an allegory, had been too 
cold and fiat for the Epic Poem. 

We see, from the Hero's urging the example of those Heroes 
and Lawgivers, who we have shewn had been initiated before 
him, that his request was only for an initiation. 

" Si potuit manis arcessere conjugis Orpheus, 

" Threicia fretus cithara fidibusque canoris : 

" Si fratrem Pollux alterna morte redemit, 

" Itque reditque viam toties : quid Thesea magnum, 

" Quid memorem Alciden ? etmi genus ab Jove summo." 

It is to be observed, that Theseus is the only one of these an- 
tient heroes not recorded in History to have been initiated, 
though we have shewn so evidently that his Descent into Hell 
was, like that of the rest, only a jmrticipation of the Mys- 
teries. The reason is, because his entrance was a violent in- 

But an old Poem, under the name of Orpheus, entitled, 
" A Descent into Hell," had it been now existing, would, 
perhaps, have shewn us that no more was meant than Orplieus's 
initiation ; and that the idea of this sixth Book was taken from 
thence. Further, that it was customary for the Poets of this 
age to exercise themselves on the subject of the Mysteries ap- 
pears from Tully, who desires Atticus, then at Athens and 
initiated, to send Chilius, a Poet of eminence s , an account of 
the Eleusinian Mysteries ; in order, as it would seem, to insert 
into some Poem he was then writing. " Chilius te rogat et 
" ego ejus rogatu 'EYMOAITI AfiN IT.ATPIA V On which 
Victorius observes " Uailqia fere omnes excusi quemadmodum 
" est in antiquis, habent : ut intelligat ritus patrios et institu- 
" tiones illius sacrae familiae, et augusta Mysteria, ut inquii 
" Cicero 2. de Legibus." Thus it appearsthat both the antient 
and modern Poets afforded him a pattern for his undertaking. 
However this be, Servius saw thus far into VirgiPs design, 

>' L. 11. Prope finem. s See Lib. I. Ep. 16, ad Atticum. 

« Lib. I, Ep.9.adAtticum. 

240 \Y\RBi RTOVS l:\ 4 M]\"\TIG\ 

as to say, " that many things were here delivered in the pro- 
" found learning of the Aegyptian theology u ." And we have 
shewn that the doctrines taught in the Mysteries, were invented 
by that people. But though 1 say this was our Poefs general 
design, I would not be supposed to think he followed no other 
guides. Several of the Episodes are borrowed from Homer ; 
and several of the philosophic notions from Plato: some of 
which will be taken notice of in their place. 

The great agent in this affair is the Sibvl ; and, as a virgin, 
she sustains two principal and distinct parts : that of the in- 
spired Priestess, to pronounce the Oracle ; (whose connexion 
with the Mysteries is spoken of above) and that of Hierophant, 
to conduct the initiated through the whole celebration. 

Her first part begins, 

" Ventum erat ad limen, cum Virgo, poscere fata 

" Tempus, ait. Deus, ecce, Deus 

" O tandem magnis pelagi defuncte periclis," etc. 

and ends, 

'.* Ut primum cessit furor, et rabida ora quierunt." 

Her second part begins at, 

" Sate sanguine Divum, 
" Tros Anchisiade," etc. 

and continues through the whole book. 

We have observed, that the initiated had a guide or' con- 
ductor, called 'IsqoQavrvs, Mw>aya>yoh 'Iegevs-, indifferently of 
either sex x , who was to instruct him in the preparatory cere- 
monies, and lead him to, and explain the Shews and Spectacles. 
Accordingly, Virgil hath given Aeneas the Sibyl ; vvhom he 
ealls Vates, magna Sacerdos, et docta Comes, words of equi- 
valent signification. And as the She Mystagogiie was devoted tu 
a single life y , so was the Cumaean Sibyl, vvhom he calls Casia 
Sibvlla. The reason why a Priestess is giveh to.coiiducl him, 
is because Proserpine presides in thi> vvhole affair. And the 
name of the Priestess in the Eleusinian Mysteries shows that 
she properly belonged to Proserpine ; though slie was also 
called the Priestess of Ceres. " The Ancients," says Porphy- 
rius, " called the Priestesses of Ceres M&aao-a.i, as being the 
" Ministers or Hierophants of the subterraneous Goddess, and 

u Multa per altam Scientiam Theologicorum Aegyptiorum. 

x Tas iiolia.; [ Ajj^^o;] MiXlffffas \yJ.Xov» 01 vor/irai. Scliol. Eurip. llippol. ~SU- 
Xto-ffa; Kuoiu; ra; rn; A/^rireo; iloua; §y.o-i- Schol. i'n;d. 1' yiilioil. 

>' Hierophanta apud Athenas eviratui virnm, et aetefna debilitate fit castus. 
Hieron. ad Geion. de Monogamia, Kai rli 'BEPO$ANTHN xqu rds 'IEEO*ANTIAA2, 

xai rov a , uhoZ%ov, xa) ra: a/./.a; hpiict; (tvioimts 'i\uv ?:|av». <» '<■ xui r.~ A,'..u/,rox- voo- 
fQloSai ruvrw (fwi- Schol, Sophocl.Oedip. Col.V. 673. — SirS l to - ' roioZro; i£ ~U;x- 


11 Proserpine herself MsXm^r z ." And Aeneas addresses her, 
as an aspirant to the Mysteries would address the Hiero- 

Potes namque omnia : nec te 

" Nequidquam lucis Hecate praefecit Avernis." 
And she answers much in the language of those sacred ministers, 
" Quod si tantus amor, etc. 

— et Insano juvat indulgere labori ; 
Accipe quae peragenda prius." 

For insanus is the same as kvQHt7ia.<nx.os, and this, as we are told 
by Strabo, was an inseparable circumstance of the Mysteries 3 . 

The first instruction the Prophetess givesAeneas, is to search 
for the Golden Bough, sacred to Proserpine, 

" Aureus et foliis et lento vimine ramus, 
" Junoni infernae sacer." 

Servius can make nothing of this circumstance. He supposes 
it might possibly allude to a tree in the middle of the sacred 
grove of Diana's temple in Greece : where, if a fugitive came 
for sanctuary, and could get off a branch from this tree, which 
was carefully guarded by the priests, he had the honour to go 
to handy-cuffs with one of them, and, if he overcame him, to 
take his place. Though nothing can be more foreign to the 
point in question than this rambling stuff, yet the Abbe Banier, 
the best interpreter of the Fables of the Ancients, is forced, for 
want of a better, to take up with this solution b , after Servius. 
Now we say, that under this branch is obumbrated the Wreath 
of Myrtle, with which the initiated were crowned at the cele- 
bration of the Mysteries c . 1. Because the Golden Bough is 
said to be sacred to Proserpine, and so we see w r as the Myrtle : 
Proserpine only without Ceres is mentioned all the way through- 

rrutitv %o\itiv osv, Yiov wawoWs/sJVcta/, xui clToXavnv rov yu.fji.ov* xu\uft.uoutvuv iwxooffwxov ovra 

It was for this reason that these female Hierophants were called 'MiXto-o-at, as is 
well observed by the Schol. on Pind. in Pyth. the Bee being, arnoug the ancients, 
the symbol of Chastity; 

" Quod nec concubitu indulgent, nec corpora segnes 
" In Venerem solvunt " 

2 De antro Nymph. 

a T»i A^jjrg* vh &JX ro 'OPriASTIKOX zrciv, xcu ro Bu.y.%iy.ov, xcti ro x<>Z" i ° y > **' 
ro •aioi rcc; riXiroc; fiv^incv. 1. 10. 
b Explicat. Histor. des Fables, vol. 2. p. 133. Ed. 1715. 
~M.vofivns fKpdvoj Ifi^uvovvjo oi fAiftur,uiv(t, SchoL Aristoph. Ranis. 


out ; partly because the initiation is described as an actual 
descent into Hell ; but principally because, when the rites of 
the Mysteries were performed, then Ceres and Proserpine were 
equally invoked; but when the Shews were represented, then 
Proserpine alone presided : but this book is only a i*epresentation 
of the Shews of the Mysteries. 2. The quality of this Golden 
Bough, with its " lento vimine," admirably describes the tender 
Branches of Myrtle. 3. The doves of Venus are made to 
direct Aeneas to the tree : 

" Tum Maximus Heros 
" Maternas agnoscit aves." — 

They fly to it, and rest upon it, as on an accustomed perch, be* 
longing to the family : a place where they loved to be : for the 
Myrtle was consecrated to Venus, as every one knows. 

" Sedibus optatis gemina super arbore sidunt." 

But there is a greater propriety and beauty in this conduct, 
than appears at first view. For not only the Myrtle was dedi- 
cated to Proserpine as well as Venus, but the Doves likewise, 
as Porphyry informs us d . 

But the reader may ask, why is this Myrtle-branch repre- 
sented to be of gold ? Not merely for the sake of the marvel- 
lous, he may be assured. A Golden Bough was literally part 
of the sacred equipage in the Sheivs, a burthen which the Ass, 
who carried the Mysteries, we may be sure, was chiefly proud 
of. This branch was sometimes wreathed into a crown, and 
worn on the head; at other times, it was carried in the hand. 
Clemens Alexandrinus tells us (Strom. lib. 5. p. 568.) from 
Dionysius Thrax, the grammarian, that it was an Egyptian cus- 
tom to hold a branch in the act of adoration. And of what 
kind these branches were, Apuleius tells us, in his description 
of a procession of the Initiated in the Mysteries of Isis : " Ibat 
" tertius, attollens Palmam Auro Subtiliter Foliatam, necnon 
" mercurialem etiam Caduceum." (Metam. lib. xi. p. 383.) The 
Golden Branch, then, and the Caduceus, were related. And 
accordingly Virgil makes the former do the usual office of the 
latter, in affording a free jaassage into the regions of the dead. 
Again, Apuleius, describing the fifth person in the procession, 

" Quintus auream vannum Aureis congestam Ramulis." 


d Tn; Tt $ig<$ «rjdf, •xu^u. ro <plg£u» vov tyu.<f\a.i ) <pa<r)v ot zfoXko) rovvofiX <ruv SloXoywv. 
hgov yu.% cnvTris h foirlK. Porph. de Abst. 1. 4. § J6. 


So that a Golden Bough, we see, was an important implement, 
and of very complicated intention in the Shews of the Mys~ 

Aeneas having got this Bough, or being crowned with Myrtle, 
that being necessary, as is seen above, to initiation, 

" Sed non ante datur telluris operta subire, 
" Auricomos quam quis decerpserit arbore foetus. 
" Hoc sibi pulchra suum ferri Proserpina munus 
" Instituit." 

The Poet tells us he carried it into the Sibyl's Grot : 

" Et vatis portat sub tecta Sibyllae." 

And this was to design initiation into the lesser Mysteries : for 
Dion Chrysostom 6 tells us, this was done h oin-ntxccri //.jx§w, m a 
little narrow chapel, as we must suppose the Sibyl's Grot to 
be. The initiated into these were called Nlusai. 

He is then led by the Sibyl, his Mystagogue, to the scene of 
the Descent : 

" His actis, propere exequitur praecepta Sibyllae. 

" Spelunca alta fuit, vastoque immanis hiatu 

" Scrupea, tuta lacu nigro nemorumque tenebris." 

His reception is thus described : 

" Sub pedibus mugire solum et juga coepta moveri 
" S)'lvarum; visaeque canes ululare per umbram,^ 
" Adventante Dea. Procul 6, procul este, profani, 
" Conclamat vates, totoque absistite luco." 

How true a description this was of the opening of the Shews in 
the Mysteries, may be seen by the fine description which 
Claudian^rq/<?s<9£a^y and without disguise makes of the entrance 
into these tremendous rites, where he counterfeits the raptures 
and astonishment of one of the initiated, and throws himself, as 
it were, like the Sibyl into the midst of the scene. 

** Furens antro se immisit aperto." 

Thus he breaks out : 

" Gressus removete, Profani, 
" Jam furor humanos nostro de pectore sensus 

" Expulit 

" Jam mihi cernuntur trepidis delubra moveri 
" Sedibus, et claram dispergere fulmina Iucem, 

Orat. 12. 

R 2 


" Adventum testata Dei. Jam magnus ab imis 
" Auditur fremitus terris, templumque remugit 
" Cecropium ; sanctasque faces attollit Eleusin ; 
" Angues Triptolemi stridunt, et squamea curvis 
" Colla levant attrita jugis — 
" Ecce procul ternas Hecate variata figuras 
" ExoriturV 

And how exactly both descriptions agree to the relations the 
ancient Greek writers have left us of these things, may be seen 
from the general view Dion Chrysostom gives us of initiation in 
these words : " Just so it is as when one leads a Greek or Bar- 
" barian to be initiated iii a certain mystic dome, excelling in 
" beauty and magnificence ; where he sees many mystic sights, 
'* and hears in the same manner a multitude of voices ; where 
" darkness and light alternately affect his senses ; and a thou- 
" sand other uncommon things present themselves before him g ." 

The " visaeque canes ululare per umbram," is clearly ex- 
plained by Pletho in his Scholia to the magic Oracles of 
Zoroaster : " It is the custom in the celebration of the Mysteries, 
" to present before many of the initiated, phantasms of a canine 
" fio-ure, and other monstrous shapes and appearancesV 

The Procul 6 Procul este Profani of the Sibyi, is a 
literal translation of the formulary used by the Mystagogue, 
at the opening of the Mysteries : 


The Sibyl then bids Aeneas arm himself with all his courage, being to encounter most dreadful appearances : 

" Tuque invade viam, vaginaque eripe ferrum : 
" Nunc animis opus, Aenea, nunc pectore firmo." 

And we soon find the hero in a fright : 

" Corripit hic subita trepidus formidine ferrum 
" Aeneas, strictamque aciem venientibus offert." 

And thus affected the antients represent the initiated , on his 
entrance into these rites. " Entering now into the mystic 
" dome," says Themistius, " he is filled with horror and amaze- 
" ment. He is seized with solicitude, and a total perplexity. 
" He is unable to move a step forward, or how to begin right 
" the road that is to lead him to the place he aspires to. Till 

'" De Raptu Proserp. sub initio. 

s Orat. 12. s ; 

11 "Eiah to7; zroWoTs ruv n^vfihav tpu.UwSai KCtrcc t«s rsXjraj nwubn riw, r-tti uaIu; 
a^oKol» rcls !"««?«} <pd<rf*cclcc. 


" the Prophet (the Vates) or conductor laying open the vestibule 
" of the temple 1 ." — So Proclus: " As in the most holy Mys- 
" teries, before the Scene of the mystic Visions, there is a terror 
" infused over the minds of the initiated ; so," &c k . And we 
presently see that which occasioned it ; for Aeneas is now en- 
gaged amongst all the real and imaginary evils of life ; all the 
diseases of mind and body ; all the " Terribiles visu formae," 
the Centaurs, Scyllae, Chimaera, Gorgons, and Harpies : and 
these are they which Pletho, in the place quoted above, calls 
dXkomrcx. ra.s fxoqQxr <pzo-/Aa.rx, as seen in the entrance of the 
Mysteries ; and which Celsus tells us were presented likewise 
in the Bacchic rites 1 . These are said to be " Vestibulum ante 
" ipsum," and Themistius tells us that that was the scene of all 
the terrors, rx. zygoiruXaia. roy vecu. 

On the opening of this scene, the Poet stops short in his Nar- 
ration ; and breaks out into this solemn Apology : 

" Dii, quibus imperium est animarum, umbraeque silentes ; 
" Et Chaos et Phlegethon loca nocte silentia late, 
" Sit mihi fas audita loqui : sit numine vestro 
" Pandere res alta terra et caligine mersas." — 

Conscious that he was about to engage in an impioas kind of 
undertaking, such as revealing the Mysteries was g"enerally 
esteemed to be. Claudian, in the Poem taken notice of before, 
who professes openly to treat of the Eleusinian Mysteries, at a 
time when they were in little veneration, yet in compliance to 
old custom, exeuses his undertaking in the very same manner : 

" Dii, quibus in numerum, etc. 

" Vos mihi sacrarum penetralia pandite rerum, 
" Et vestri secreta poli, qua lampade Ditem 
" Flexit Amor, quo ducta ferox Proserpina raptu 
" Possedit dotale Chaos ; quantasque per oras 
" Sollicito genetrix erraverit anxia cursu ; 
" Unde datae populis leges, et glande relicta, 
" Cesserit inventis Dodonia quercus aristis" 1 ." 

Had the revealing the Mysteries been as penal at Rome, as it 
was in Greece, Virgil had never ventured on this part of his 
Poem. But yet it was esteemed an impiety 11 ; he therefore 

■ Orat. in Patrem. 

flfrto iv rou; a.yiu]arou; nXflou; zfpo ruiv fii/fixwv QiccfAxr&iv iKTXn^is <ruv fiunulvi-jy, 

euru. In Plat. Theol. 1. 3. c. 18. 

Toi; iv rou; ~Ru.x^ikou; ri\(\ou; ra <pdio-p.Oiloi xou Ci'iu.otreo ■sfponfi.fsgi, Oriff. cont. 
Cels. 1. 4. p. 167. 

m De Raptu Proserpinje, 1. 1. sub init. 

u Athenis initiatus [Augustus] cum postea Romae pro tribunali de privi- 

legio sacerdotum AtticaeCereris quaedam secretiora proponsrentur, 
dimisso concilio et corona clrcumstantium, solus audiit disceptantes. Sueton. 
1. 2. Octav. Aug. c. 93. 


does it covertly, and raakes this Apology to those who saw into 
his meaning. 

The hero and his guide now enter on their journey : 

" Ibant obscuri sola sub nocte per umbras : 
" Perque domos Ditis vacuas, et inania regna. 
" Quale per incertam lunam sub luce maligna 
" Est iter in sylvis : ubi coelum condidit umbra 
" Juppiter, et rebus nox abstulit atra colorem." 

This description puts me in mind of a passage in Lucian's 
Dialogue of the Tyrant. As a company made up of every con- 
dition of life, are voyaging together into the other world, 
Mycillus breaks out, and says : — " Bless us ! how dark it is ! 
' Where now is the fair Megillus ? Who can tell here whether 
' Simmiche or Phyrna be the handsomer ? Every thing is alike 
' and of the same colour ; and no room for comparisons be- 
' tween beauties. Nay my old cloak, which but now presented 
' to your eyes so irregular a figure, is become as honourable a 
' wear as his majesty's purple. For they are both vanished, 
' and retired together under the same cover. But my friend, 
' the Cynic, where are you ? give me your hand : You are in- 
' itiated in the Eleusinian Mysteries. Tell me now, do you 
' not think this very like the blind march they make there ? 
' Cy. Oh extremely : and see, here comes one of the Furies, 
' as I guess, by her equipage, with her torch, and her terrible 
' looks°." 

They come now to the banks of Cocytus. Aeneas is sur- 
prised at the crowd of ghosts that hover round it, and appear 
impatient for a passage. He is told by his guide, that they are 
such, whose bodies have not had the rites of sepulture ; and are 
therefore doomed to wander up and down for a hundred years, 
before they are permitted to cross it. 

" Haec omnis, quam cernis, inops inhumataque turbaest: 

" Portitor ille, Charon; hi, quos vehit unda, sepulti. 

" Nec ripas datur horrendas, nec rauca fluenta 

" Transportare prius, quam sedibus ossa quierunt. 

" Centum errant annos, volitantque haec litora circum. 

" Tum demum admissi stagna exoptata revisunt." 

But we are not to think this old notion took its birth from 
the superstitious vulgar. The propagating it was one of the 
wisest contrivances of antient Legislation. And that it came 
from this forge, we liave no reason to doubt, because it was 
originally Aegyptian. Those profound masters of wisdom, in 

° Luciani Cataplus. 


contriving for the safety of their fellow-eitizens, found nothing 
would more contribute to it, than the public and solemn inter- 
ment of the dead ; private murders, without this provision, be- 
ing casily and securely perpetrated. They thereforeintroduced 
the custom of the most public and pompous funeral rites. And 
both Herodotus and Diodorus Siculus observe, that they were, 
of all people, the most circumstantially ceremonious in them. 
But, to secure the observance, by the force of religion, as well 
as custom, they taught that the deceased could not retire to a 
place of rest in the other world, till these rites were paid to 
nim in this. And the notion spread so wide, and fixed its root 
so deep, that the substance of the superstition remains, even to 
this day, in most civilized countries. By so effectual a method 
did the Legislator gain his end, the security of the citizen. 
There is one circumstance, which, if well considered,will shew us 
of how great moment the rites of sepulture were thought by the 
antients. The three greatest of the Greek Poets are withoutques- 
tion, Homer, Sophocles, and Euripides. Now, in the judgment 
of modern critics,the performance of funeralrites for Patroclus, 
Ajax and Polynices, in the Iliad, the Ajax and the Phoenicians, is 
a vicious continuation of the story which violates the unity of 
the action. But these men did not consider, that the antients 
esteemed funeral rites to be an inseparable part of the history 
of any one's death. And that therefore those great masters of 
unity and decorum could not think the action ended, till that 
important circumstance was settled. 

But the Egyptian Legislator found afterwards another use in 
this opinion; and, by artfully turning it as a punishment on in- 
solvent debtors, grounded on it an institution of great advantage 
to society: for, instead of that general custom of modern bar- 
barians to bury insolvent debtors alive, this polite and humane 
people had a law that denied burial to them when dead. The 
terrorof which, we are told, gained itsdesired effect. And here 
the learned Marsham seems to be mistaken, when he supposes, 
that from this interdiction of sepulchral rites, sprung up the 
Grecian opinion of the wandering of unburied ghosts 11 . For it is 
plain, from the nature of the thing, that the law was founded on 
the opinion, which was Egyptian; and not the opinion on the 
Law, because the opinion was the only sanction of the Law. 

On the whole, had not our Poet adjudged it a matter of 
much importance, he had hardly dwelt so long upon it, or re- 
turnecl again ^o it q , or laid so much stress on it, or made his 
hero so attentively consider it. 

p Ab interdictae apud Aegyptios sepulturae poena, inolevit apud Graecos opi- 
nio insepultorum corporum animas a Charonte non esse admissas. — Canon Chro- 
nicus, Secidum 1 ] . sect- 3. 

i V, 373, et seq. 

*"*" waprt;rton*s examination 

" Constitit Anchisa satus, et vestigia pressit, 


But having added — " Sortemque animo miseratus iniquam ;" 
and Servius commented, " Iniqua enim sors est puniri propter 
" alterius negligentiam : nec enim quis culpa sua caret Sepul- 
" chro;" Mr. Baylecries out r , « What injustice is this! Was it 
« the fault of these souls that their bodies were not interred?" 
But not knowing the original of this opinion, he did not see its 
use ;_ and so attributes that to the blindness of religion, which 
was the issue of wise policy. Virgil, by his " sors iniqua," means 
no more than that in this, as well as in several other civil in- 
stitutions, a public good was often a private injury. 

The next thing observable is the Ferry-man, Charon ; and 
ne, the learned well know, was a substantial Egyptian ; and, as 
an ingenious writer says, fairly existing in this world. The 
case was plainly thus : The Egyptians, like all other people, in 
their descriptions of the other world, used to resemble it to 
something they were well acquainted with in this. In their 
funeral rites, which, as we observed, was with them a matter of 
greater moment than with any other nation, they used to carry 
their dead over the Nile, and through the marsh of Acherusia ; 
and there put them into subterraneous vaults: the ferry-man, 
here employed, being in their language called Charon. Now 
in their descriptions of the other world,in the Mvsteries, it was 
natural for them to borrow from these circumstances in the 
funeral rites. And that they themselves actually transferred 
these realities into the MT0O2, and not the Greeks, as their 
later writers generally imagine, might be very easily pro/ed if 
there was any occasion. 

Charon is appeased at the sight of the Golden Bough. 

" Ille admirans venerabile donum 

" Fatalis Virgae, Longo Post Tempore visum." 

But itis represented asthe passportof all the antient heroeswho 
had descended into hell; how then could it be said to be " longo 
" post tempore visum," Aeneas being so near the times of those 
heroes ? To explain this, we must have in mind what hath been 
said above of a perfect Lawgiver's being held out in Aeneas, 
and of Augustus's being shadowed under the Trojan Chief. So 
that here Virgil is thinking of his master ; and the insinuation 
is, that the Roman Emperor, in a latter age, should rival the 
fame of the first Grecian Lawgivers. 

* Quelle bjustice ! etoit-ce la faute de ces ames que leurs corps n'eussent pas 
ete enterr£s. Respons. aiuv Quest. d'un Provincial. p. 3. c. 22. 


But Aeneas hath now crossed the river, and is come into the 
proper regions of the dead. The first thing that occurs to him 
is the Dog Cerberus: 

" Haec ingens latratu regna trifauci 
" Personat, adverso recubans immanis in Antro." 

This is plainly the phantom in the Mysteries, which Pletho tells 
us above, was in the shape of a dog, xwuj^ri nvx. And in the 
fable of Hercules' descent into Hell, which, we have shewn, 
signified no more than his initiation into the Mysteries, it is said 
to have been, amongst other things, for fetching up the dog 

To appease his rage, the prophetess gives him a medicated 
cake, which casts him into a slumber. 

" Cui vates, horrere videns jam colla colubris, 
" Melle soporatam ct medicatis frugibus offam 
" Objicit. Ille fame rabida tria guttura pandens 
" Conripit objectam, atque immania terga resolvit 
" Fusus humi, totoque ingens extenditur Antro." 

The cake was of poppy-seed (for so I understand " medicatis 
" frugibus") made up with honey. Honey, as we have shewn 
above, was sacred to Proserpine, who on that account Avas called 
MsXirwSr,*. And the poppy, to Ceres. " Cereale Papaver," 
savs Virgil, on which words Servius thus comments, " vel quod 
" est esui, sicut frumentum, vel quo Ceres usaest ad oblivionem 
" doloris; nam ob raptum Proserpinae Vigiliis defatigata, gus- 
" tato eo acta est in SoporemV To the same purpose Ovid in 
speaking 6f Ceres: 

" Illa soporiferum parvos initura Penates 
" Colligit agresti lene papaver humo: 

" Dum legit, oblito fertur gustasse palato, 
" Longamque imprudens exsoluisse famem'." 

The regions are, according to VirgiPs division, in three 
parts: 1. Purgatory, 2. Tartarus, 3. Elysium. For Deipho- 
bus, in the first, says, 

" Discedam, explebo numerum, reddarque tenebrisV 

And in the second it is said of Theseus, 

•" Sedet, aeternumque sedebit 
" Infelix Theseus." 

6 Adl. l.Georg. v. 212. l L. 3. Fast. 

■ But the nature and end of this Purgatory the Poet describes at large, frcm 
v. 736. to v. 745. 


The mysteries divided them in the very same manner. So 
Plato, in the passage quoted above, speaks, as taught there, of 
souls sticking fast in mire and filth, and remaining in dark- 
ness, till a long series of years had purged and purified them. 
And Celsus, in Origen, we have seen, says that eternal punish- 
ments were taught in the Mysteries. 

Of all the three states, that of Tartarus only was eternal. 
There was, indeed, another, in the antient Pagan Theology, 
which had the same relation to Elysium that Tartarus had to 
Purgatory, the extreme of reward, as Tartarus of punishment. 
But then this state was not in the infernal regions, but in Hea- 
ven. Neither was it the lot of common men, but reserved for 
heroes and demoits ; beings of a superior order, such as Her- 
cules, Bacchus, &c, who became Gods on their admission into 
Heaven, where eternitv wasthe consequence of their deification. 

Cicero distinguishes the two orders of souls, according to the 
vulgar theology, in this manner. " Quid autem ex hominum 
" genere consecratos, sicut Herculem et ceteros coli lex jubet, 
" indicat omnium quidem animos immortales esse; Fortium 
" Bonorumque Divinos." — De Legg. Lib. 1. Cap. 12. 

And here it is very observable to our purpose, that the vir- 
tues and vices which the Poet recapitulates, as stocking these 
three divisions with inhabitants, are such as most immediately 
affect society. A plain proof that he was directed by the same 
views with the institutors of the Mysteries. 

Purgatory, the first division, is inhabited by suicides, extrava- 
gant lovers, and ambitious warriors : and in a word, by all 
those, who had given a loose to the exorbitancy of their pas- 
sions ; which made them rather miserable than wicked. It is 
remarkable that amongst these we find one of the initiated: 

" Cererique sacrum Polyboeten." 

Which was agreeable to the public teaching in the Mysteries, 
that initiation without virtue wasof nouse; though with vir- 
tue the initiated had great advantages over other men in a 
future state. 

But, of all these disorders, suicide being most pernicious to 
society, the Poet hath more distinctly marked out the misery of 
this condition: 

" Proxima deinde tenent moesti loca, qui sibi lethum 
" Insontes peperere manu, lucemque perosi 
" Projecere animas. Quam vellent aethere in alto 
" Nunc et pauperiem et duros perferre labores!" 

Here he keeps close to the Mysteries; which not only forbade 


suicide, but taught on what account it was criminal. " That 
" which is taught in the Mysterics" says Plato, " concerning 
" these matters, of man's being placed in a certain watch, or 
" station, which it is unlawful to fly from, or forsake, is a pro- 
" found doctrine, and not easily fathomed*. 

Hitherto all goes well. But what must we say to the Poefs 
putting children, and men falsely condemned, into his Purga- 
tory ? For though the modern Roman Faith and Inquisition 
send these two sorts of persons into a place of punishment, yet 
the genius of antient Paganism had a far gentler spirit. It is 
indeed difficult to tell what these inmates have to do here. 

x 'O^Iv ovv Iv AIIOPPHTOI- Xiyofiivo; TSipi uvruv Xoyo;, cl; 'iv nvi <p?xga io-f&iv 01 uvGgai-xoi 
xu) h oCibvi iuvrov \x ruvr^; Xvnv sro' ucrooiopuffxnv, fayu; rs ri; fcoi (puivfjui xui x paoio; On- 
hTv Phaed. p. 62. Ser. Ed. tom. 1. The very learned Mr. Dacier translates h 
aTo'opr>roi; , dans les Mystercs ; and this agreeably to his vast knowledge of antiquity . 
For oi*oppnja was used by the antients, to signify not only the grand secret taught in 
theMysteries, butthe Mysteries themselves : as appears from innumerable places 
in their writings. Yet the French translator of Pufndorfs Law of Nature and 
Nations, 1. 2. c. 4. sect. 19. Note (1), accuses him of not understanding- his au- 
thor. " Mr. Dacier fait dire a Platon que l'on tenoit tous les jours ces discours 
" au peuplo dans les ceremonies et dans les Mvsteres. II seroit a souhaiter qu'il 
" eut allegue quelque autorite pouretablir un fait si remarquable. Mais il s'agit 
" ici manifestement des instructions secretes que les Pythagoriciens donnoient 
u a leurs inities, et lesquelles ils decouvroient les raisons les plus abstruses, et les 
" plus particuliers des dog-mes de leur philosophie. Ces instructions cachees 

" s'appelloient avoppflz Ce que Platon dit un peu aupararant de Philolaiis, 

" Philosophe Pythagoricien, ne permit pas de douter que la raison, qu'il rap- 
" porte ici comme trop abstruse et difiicile k comprendre, ne soit celle que don- 
" noient les Pythagoriciens." He says, it was to be wished Dacier had some 
authority for so remarkable a fact. Ile hath this verv passage : which is autho- 
rity enough. For the word a-roppyj&c signifies the Mysteries, and cannot here 
mean the secret Doctrines of the Philosophers ; as will be shewn presently. But 
those who want farther authority, may have it, amply, in the nature and end pf 

the Mysteries, as explained above. He says, it is evident, Plato is here 

talking of the secret instructions which the Pythagoreans gave to their initiated, 
in which they discovered their most abstruse and pavticular doctrines. This can- 
not possibly be so, for a very evident reason. The philosophy of the Pythago- 
reans, like that of other sects, was divided into the Exoterical and Esoterical ; 
the Open taught to all, and the Secret taught to a select number. But the impk ty 
ofsuicide was a doctrine in the lirst division taught to all, as serviceable to so- 
ciety : " Vetatque Pythagoras injussu imperatoris, id est, Dei, de praesidio et 
" statione vitae decedere," says Tully,in his book of Old Age ; who, in his Dream 
of Scipio, writ in the Exoteric way, condemns Suicide, for the very same reason. 
But inanepistle to a particular friend, which certainlywas of theEsoteric kind, he 

approves of it. '•' Ceteriquidem, Pompeius, Lentulus tuus, Scipio, Afranius, 

foede perierunt. At Cato praeclare. Jam istuc quidem, cum volemus, licebit." 
L. 9. Ep. 18. It could not be therefore, that the impiety of Suicide could be 
called one of the afoppyfiu of Philosophy ; for, on the contrarv, it v, as one of their 
populardoctrines. But this willbefuller seen when we come to speak of the Philo- 

sophers in the next book. He concludes, that as Plato had spoke of Philolaiis 

a liltle before, it cannot be doubted but that he speaks of the reason against Sui- 
cide, as a doctrine of the Pythagorean philosophy. What has been said above, 
utterly excludes any such interpretation. But thougli it did not, his reason will 
not infer it. There is nothing in the context that shews Plato had Philolaiis in 
his mind here. That this was a doctrine, thoivgh not of the Esoteric kind, in the 
Pythagoric school, I readily allow. The Mysteries, and that, held an infinite 
number of things in common : we have seen this in part already, and when we 
come to speak of. Pythagoras., we shall shew how this happened. 


And the commentators, as is their use, observe a profound 
silence. Let us first examine the case of the infants ; which we 
shall find can be cleared up only in our view of things ; and 
should therefore be considered as another strong presumption 
of its truth. 

" Continuo auditae voces, vagitus et ingens, 
" Infantumque animae flentes in limine primo: 
" Quos dulcis vitae exortes, et ab ubere raptos 
" Abstulit atra dies, et funere mersit acerbo." 

These appear to have been the cries and lamentings that Proclus 
tells us were heard in the Mysteries y . So that we only want to 
know the original of so extraordinary an opinion. Which I take 
to have been just such another institution of the Legislator, for 
the preservation of the ofFspring, as that about Funeral Rites 
was for the parents. And nothing sure could more engage 
parents to the care and preservation of their voung, than so 
terrible a doctrine. Nor are we to think, that their instinctive 
fondness needed no enforcement, or support to the discharge of 
this natural duty : for that most degenerate and horrid practice 
among the antients, of exposing infants, was universal; and had 
almost erased morality and instinct. So that it needed the 
strongest and severest check : and I am well persuaded it was 
that which occasioned this counterplot of the magistrate, in 
order to give instinct fair play, and call back banished nature. 
Nothing indeed could be more worthy of his care : for the de- 
struction of children, as Pericles finely observed of youth, is likc 
cutting off the spring from the year. 

Here Mr. Bayle is again scandalized : " The first thing that 
" occurred on the entrance into the other world was the station 
" assigned to infants, who lamented and cried without ceasing; 
" and, next to it, that of men unjustly condemned to death. 
" Now what could be more shocking or scandalous than the 
" punishment of those little creatures who had yet committed 
" no sin, or of those persons whose innocence had been oppressed 
" by calumny 2 ?" The first case we have already cleared up ; 
the second we shall consider presently. But it is no wonder 
Mr. Bayle could not digest this doctrine of the infants ; for I 
am very much mistaken if it did not stick with the great Plato 
himself. Who, relating the Vision of Erus the Pamphylian, 

1 Ka.) t<h: (tvengioif rov; ftvfiKOv; 0PHXOT2 (UifiKas ■a , aotiXr l (pafih . In Comment. 
in Platonis Remp. I. 10. 

z La premiere chose que Pon rencontroit a 1'entree des Enfers, etoit la station 
des petits enfans, qui ne cessoient de pleurer, et puis celle des personnes injuste- 
ment condamnees a la mort. Quoi de plus choquant, de plus scandaleux, que la 
peine de ces petites creatures, qui n ? avoient encore commis nul peche ; ou que la 
peine de ceux, dont 1'innocence avoit ete opprim^e par la calomnie ? Respom, 
aux Quest. d'un Prov. p. 3. c. 22. 


concerning the distribution of rewards and punishments in a 
future state, when he coines to the condition of infants, passea 
it over in this remarkable manner : — " But of childrenwho died 
in their infancy, he reported certain other things not worthy 
to be recordedV Erus^s account of what he saw in ano- 
ther world, is a summary of what the Egyptians taught of that 
matter. And I make no question, but the thing here unworthy 
of being recorded, was the doctrine of Infants in Purgatory : 
which Flato (not reflecting on this original and use) appears to 
have been shocked at. 

But now, as to the falsely condemned, the most perplexing 
difficulty in the whole Aeneis, we must seek another solution : 

" Hos juxta, falso damnati crimine mortis ; 
'* Nec vero hae sine sorte datae, sine judice sedes. 
" Quaesitor Minos urnam movet : ille silentum 
" Conciliumque vocat, vitasque et crimina discit." 

Here appears a strange jumble as well as iniquity in this de- 
signment : the falsely accused b are not only in a place of pu- 
nishment, but, being first represented under one predicament, 
they are afterwards distinguished, some as blameable, others as 
innocent. To clear up all this confusion, we must transcribe 
an old story told by Plato in his Gorgias : " There was this 
" law concerning mortals in the time of Saturn, and is now 
" always enforced by the Gods; that he who had lived a just 
" and pious life, should at his death be carried into the Islands 
" of the Blessed, and there possess all kinds of happiness, un- 
" tainted with the evils of mortality : but that he who had lived 
" unjustly and impiously, should be thrust into a place of 
" punishment, the prison of divine justice, called Tartarus. 
" Now the judges, with whom the execution of this law was 
" intrusted, were, in the time of Saturn, and under the infancy 
" of Jove's government, living men, sitting in judgment on the 
" living ; and decreeing and appointing their abodes on the very 
" day on which every one should die. This gave occasion to 
" iniquitous and perverse judgments : on which account Pluto, 
" and those to whom the care of the happy Islands was com- 
" mitted, went to Jupiter, and told him, that men came to them 
" wrongly judged, both wlien acquitted and when condemned. 
" To which the Father of the Gods made this reply : I will 
" put a stop to this evil, says he. These wrong judgments are 
" partly occasioned by the corporeal covering of the persons 

a Twv ds tufu; yivoftivaiv, X.0C1 oXiyov %oovov faiovvruv Tio) aXXtt iXlytv 0*fK ASIA 
MNHMH2; De Rep. 1. 10. p. 615. Ser." Ed. 

b Servius on the place characterizes them in this manner :— -'' Qui sibi per 
" simplicitatem adesse nequiverunt." 


" judged ; for they are tried while living : now many have their 
" corrupted minds hid under a fair outside, adorned with birth 
" and riches ; and when they come to their trial, they have 
" many witnesses at hand to testify for their good life and con- 
" versation : this perverts the process, and blinds the eyes of 
" justice. Another cause of this evil is, that the judges them- 
" selves are likewise encumbered with the same corporeal co- 
" vering : the mind is hid and enveloped in eyes and ears c , and 
" an impenetrable tegument of flesh. All these are bars and 
" obstacles to right judgment, as well their own covering, as 
" the covering of those they judge. In the first place then, 
" says he, we are to provide that they d no longer have a fore- 
" knowledge of the day ofdeath, which they now foresee: we 
" shall therefore give this in charge to Prometheus, to take 
" away their prescience ; and then provide that they who come 
" to judgment be stripped naked of all their disguises : for they 
" are from henceforth to receive it in another world. And as 
" they are to be quite stripped, it is but fit the judges should 
" be so too : that, at the arrival of every new inhabitant, they 
" being divested of ail family and relations, and every worldly 
" ornament left behind, soul may look on soul, and be thereby 
" enabled to pass a righteous judgment. I therefore, who 
" foresaw all these things before you felt them, have taken care 
" to constitute my own sons judges : two of them, Minos and 
" Rhadamanthus, are Asiatics ; the third, Aeacus, an Eu- 
" ropean: these, when they die, shall have their tribunal erected 
" in the Shades, just in that part of the highway where the two 
" roads divide, the one leading to the happy Islands, the other 
" to Tartarus : Rhadamanthus shall judge the Asiatics, and 
" Aeacus the Europeans. But to Minos I give the superior 
" authority of hearing appeals, when any thing obscure or difii- 

c TheorigiBal to 'O$0cckftou< xa) Zra, adds ooo vja;, teeth. If this bc the true reading, 
I presume Plato intended by it, to ridicule the Athenian judges; who, like more 
modein ones, out of impatience for their dinner, sometimes acquit or condemn 
before they were possessed of the merits of the cause : but as this seems toc ludi- 
crous a circumstance for the subject, I suspect it rather to be an unmeaning 
blundcr of some old transcriber. 

d That cIutovs and durcZv relate here only to the judges, appears plain from the 
following considerations. 1 . Plato is speaking only of the judges from the words 
h oiv 6ix.ccsu), &c, and resumes the subject of those judged at the words tTur» 
yvpvov;. 2. A judicature is here abolished, and the circumstance of the abolition 
is the taking away a prescience. If it was not only the prescience of the judges, it 
was their authority, and the taking it away was indeed the abolition of the juris- 
diction, which is the point proposed. But if it was the general prescience of 
mankind, then it was no authority, and the taking it away was no abolition of the 
jurisdiction, contraiy to what it is here proposed to be. It is true, it appears that 
the persons judged had a knowledge of the day of judgment, by being so well pro- 
vided to evade an impavtial examination. But this we must reasonably suppose 
to be effected by that advantage, which the practice of all judicatories give, in 
giving notice to the person judged of his day of trial. 


" cult shall perplex the other's judgments ; that every one may 
M have his due abode assigned him with the utmost equity e ." 

The matter now begins to clear np ; and we see plainly that 
the circumstance of the falsely condemned alludes entirely to 
this old fable : ancl that by " falso damnati crimine mortis," 
Virgil did notmean, as one would imagine, " innocentes addicti 
" morti ob injustam calumniam," but " homines indigne et 
" perperam adjudicati ;" not men faUely condemned, but 
wrongly Judged, whether to acquittal or conviction : for con- 
demnation being oftenest the sentence of justice, the greater 
part is put figuratively for the whole 1 " : what follows, 

" Nec vero hae sine sorte clatae, sine judice sedes," 

" Vitasque et crimina discit," 

agreeing only to this interpretation (as supposing a wrong sen- 
tence in acquittal, as well as condemnation), confirms the truth 
ofit; and thus the whole becomes consistent. One only diffi- 
culty remains, and that, to coufess the truth, hath arisen rather 
from a mistake of VirgiPs than of his readers. We find these 
people yet unjudgecl, fixed already in an assigned district, with 
other criminals, in Purgatory. But they are wrong stationed, 
through an oversight of the Poet; which, had he lived to per- 
fect the Aeneis, doubtless he would have reformed : for we see, 
by the fable, they should have been placed on the borders of 
the three divisions, in that part of the high road that divides 
itself in two, which lead to Tartarus and Elysium ; thus, 
afterwards, described by the Poet : 

" Hic locus est, partes ubi se via findit in ambas. 
" Dextera, quae Ditis magni sub moenia tendit: 
" Hic iter Elysium nobis ; at laeva malorum 
" Exercet poenas, et ad impia Tartara mittit." 

It only now remains to consider the ground and original of the 
Fable ; which, I think, was this : It was an Egyptian custom, 
as we are told by Diodorus Siculus, for judges to be appointed 
at every one's interment ; to examine their past lives, and to 

e Tom. 1. p. 523. Serr. Ed. 

f He thatthinks this too licentious a figure, perhaps will be inclined to believe, 
that the Poet wrote, 

" Hos juxta, falso damnati tempore mortis :" 

Which both points up to the fable, from whence this circumstance was borrowed, 
and hints at the original of that fable as here explained; and besides this agrees 
best with the context. But a transcriber not knowing what to make of " terapore 
mortis," (it being oiily to be explained by this passage of Plato) migbt be easily 
tempted to change it into " crimine mortis." 


condemn and acquit, according to the evidence. These judges 
were of the priesthood ; and so, it is probable, taught, like the 
priests of the Church of Rome, that their decrees were ratified 
in the infernal Shades : partiality and corruption would, in 
time, pervert their sentence ; and spite and favour prevail over 
Justice : as this might scandalize the people, it would be found 
necessary to teach that the judgment, which influenced every 
one's final doom, was reserved for the judicature of the other 
world. However the priest took care that all should not go 
out of his hands : and when he could be no longer Judge, he 
contrived to turn Evidence ; and no doubt found his account in 
it : as appears by this antient inscription, " Ego Sextus Anicius 
" Pontifex testor honeste hunc vixisse : Manes ejus inveniant 
" quietem g ." 

This I take to be what gave birth to the general fable : but 
there is one circumstance this does not so clearly account for ; 
namelv, of the judges passing sentence in life, and predicting 
the day of the criminal's death ; and the order to Prometheus, 
on the abolition of their judicature, to take away this gift of 
prescience. To understand these things, we must suppose, 
what is very probable, that the custom, mentioned above by 
Diodorus, was only the succession of a more early one ; where 
the priests judged the living criminal for those crimes that the 
civil tribunal could not so conveniently take notice of ; which 
is the only justifiable use of an ecclesiastical jurisdiction, with 
coactive power. If this be so, then, by " predicting the day of 
" the criminaPs death" was meant " the infliction of a capital 
" punishment ;" and, by " Prometheus^s taking the gift from 
" them," the " civil magistrate's abolition of the jurisdiction :" 
and this name was not ill assigned to him, who forms the minds 
and manners of the people by the plastic arts of society. This, 
in my opinion, was the original of Plato's fable : and he seems 
plainly to have had that original in mind, when he makes 
Socrates introduce it thus : " Hear then, as they say, a cele- 
" brated tale ; which you, I imagine, will call a fable, but I 
" a true story 1 '." 

I hope this perplexed matter is now unravelled. How much 
it wanted explanation, may be seen by what one of the greatest 
geniuses of his time hath said of it in a discourse wrote to illus- 
trate Aeneas"s Descent into Hell : " There are three kinds of 
" persons," says this celebrated author, " described, as being^ 
" situated on the Borders ; and I can give no reason for their 
" being stationed there in so particular a manner, but because 
" none of them seem to have had a proper right to a place 

s Fabius Celsus Inscript. Antiq. 1. 3. 

h 2HKP. "Axm ih (Qutri) uk/.k ku.XoZ >.oyx- h ffv (tiv hywn (mi$m s us lyu oiftcti lyu 
"hl Xoyw. 



" among the dead, as not having run out the thread of their 
" days, and finished the term of life that had been allotted them 
" upon earth : the first of these are the souls of infants, who 
" are snatched away by untimely ends ; the second are of those 
" who are put to death wrongfully, and by an unjust sentence; 
" and the third of those who grew weary of their lives, and laid 
" violent hands upon themselves 1 . 

After this, follow the two Episodes of Dido and Deiphobus, 
in imitation of Homer ; where we find nothing to our purpose, 
but the strange description of the latter, whose mangled phan- 
tom is drawn according to the philosophy of Plato ; who 
teaches in his Gorgias, that the dead not only retain all the 
passions of the soul, but all the marks and blemishes of the 

Aeneas having passed this first division, comes now on the 
confines of Tartarus ; and is instructed in what relates to the 
crimes and punishments of the inhabitants, by his guide ; who 
declares her office of Hierophante, or interpreter of the Mys- 
teries, in these words : 

" Dux inclyte Teucriim, 
" Nulli fas casto sceleratum insistere limen : 
" Sed me, cum lucis Hecate praefecit avernis, 
" Ipsa Deum poenas docuit, perque omnia duxit." 

It is remarkable, that Aeneas is led through the Regions of 
Purgatory and Elysium ; but he only sees the sights of Tar 
tarus at a distance, which his guide explains to him : 

" Tum demum horrisono stridentes cardine sacrae 
" Panduntur portae : Cernis, custodia qualis 
" Vestibulo sedeat; facies quae limina servet." 

For thus it must needs be, in the shows of the Mysteries, for 
very obvious reasons. 

The criminals destined to eternal punishment ; in this divi- 
sion, are, 

1 . Those who had sinned so secretly as to escape the animad- 
version of the Magistrate : 

" Gnossius haec Rhadamanthus habet durissima regna : 
" Castigatque auditque dolos, subigitque fateri 
" Quae quis apud superos furto laetatus inani, 
" Distulit in seram commissa piacula mortem." 

And it was principally on account of such crimes, that the 
Legislator enforced the doctrine of a future state of punish- 

1 Mr Addison's Woiks, Vol. 2. p. 200. Quarto Ed. 1721. 



2. The Atheistical Despisers of Gocl and Religion: 

" Hic genus antiquura terrae Titania pubes." 

This was agreeable to the laws of Charondas, who says, " Be 
" the contempt of the Gods put in the number of the most 
" flagitious crimesV The Poet dwells particularly on that 
species of impiety, that affects divine honours : 

" Vidi et crudeles dantem Salmonea poenas, 

" Dum fiammas Jovis et sonitus imitatur Olympi." 

And this was doubtless designed by him for an oblique castiga- 
tion of the adulation of the Apotheosis, then beginning to be 
paid and received at Rome. I cannot but think Horace 
likewise, in his Ode, of which Virgil is the subject, upbraids, 
his countrymen for this madness : 

" Coelum ipsum petimus stultitia ; neque 
" Per nostrum patimur scelus 

" lracunda Jovem ponere fulmina 1 ." 

3. The Infringers of the Duties of Imperfect Obligation, 
which Civil Laws cannot reach : such as want of natural affec- 
tion to brothers, duty to parents, protection to clients, and 
charity to the poor : 

(l Hic quibus invisi fratres, dum vita manebat ; 

" Pulsatusve parens ; et fraus innexa clienti m ; 

" Aut qui divitiis soli incubuere repertis, 

" Nec partem posuere suis; quae maxima turba ect." 

4. Those pests of public ancl private peace, the Traitor and 
the Adulterer : 

" Quique ob adulterium caesi, quique arma secuti 
" Impia, nec veriti dominorum fallere dextras — 
" Vendidit hic auro patriam, dominumque potentem 
" Imposuit ; fixit leges pretio, atque reiixit. 
" Hic thalamum invasit natae, vetitosque hvmenaeos." 

It is observable, he does not say, simply, Adulteri, but " ob 
" adulterium caesi j" as implving, that the greatest civil punish- 
ment makes no atonement for this crime at the bar of Divine 

5. The fifth and last species of offenders are the Invaders 

' Es-a/ 61 uiyira. ali^/xara Biuv . ap. Stob. Semi. 42. 

1 Carm. Lib. 1. Od. 3. 

m So the Law of thetwtlve tables: Patronus si clienti fraudem fecerit, sacer 


and Violators of the holy Mysteries, hekl out in the person of 

Theseus : 

" Sedet, aeternumque sedebit 

" Infelix Theseus; Phlegyasque miserrimus omnes 
u Admonet, et magna testatur voce per umbras:" 


The Fable says, that Theseus, and his friend Pirithous, formed 
a design to steal Proserpine from Hell; but being taken in 
the fact, Pirithous was tlirown to the dog Cerberus, and The- 
seus kept in chains", till delivered by Hercules. Hereby, no 
doubt, was designed their clandestine intrusion into the Myste- 
ries ; for which they were punished, as the Fable relates ; that 
is, Pirithous capitally, and Theseus by imprisonment. We 
have already given several reasons to prove the descent ^ of 
Theseus to be a violent intrusion into the Mysteries, to which 
we may add what the antients tell us of the time of his impri- 
sonment, which was four years ; the exact space between the 
celebrations of the greater Mysteries. So Seneca makes him 

sa y> 

" Tandem profugi noctis aeternae plagam, 

" Vastoque manes carcere umbrantem Polum. 

" Ut vix cupitum sufferunt oculi diem ! 

" Jam quarta Eleusis dona Triptolemi secat, 

" Paremque toties Libra composuit diem ; 

" Ambiguus ut me sortis ignarae labor 

" Detinuit inter mortis et vitae mala ." 

Thus we may reconcile the contradictory accounts of the Fable 
concerning Theseus, some of which say he was delivered from 
Hell, others, that he was eternally detained there. The iirst 
relate to the liberty given him by the President of the Myste- 
ries ; the other, to what the Mysteries taught was the lot of 
the violators of them in the other world. This leads me to a 
circumstance which will much confirm our general interpreta- 
tion of this 6th Book. In Aeneas's Speech to the Sibyl, The- 
seus is put amongst those Heroes who went. to, and returned 
from Hell — 

" Quid Theseas Magnum 

" Quid memorem Alciden '?" — 

Brt afterwards he is represented as eternally coniined there. 
Julius Hyginus, in his Commentaries on Virgil p , thinks this a 

Tm roiK-oSsgut <tm x-jvi, <dr,ciii; S' u^xrri y.aet7liTai-—Jo. TzetZeS, C. II. Cap. LJ. 
° Hippol. 
«■ A, Gellii Noct. Att. 1. 10. c. 16. 

s 2 


gross contradiction ; that Virgil would have corrected had he 
lived to finish the Poem. But can any man in his senses believe 
that the Poet was not aware of these two contradictory ac- 
counts so near one another iri the same book ? I have recon- 
ciled them above. And his employing them both, confirms, 
as we say, our general interpretation. Aeneas wanted to be 
initiated, and where he speaks to the Sibyl, or Mysta- 
gogue, he enumerates those heroes who had been initiated 
before him, that is, those who had seen the Shews of the 
Mysteries, of which number was Theseus, though he had in- 
truded violently. But when the Poet comes to describe the 
Shews of the Mysteries, which were supposed to be a true 
representation of what was done and suffered in Hell, Theseus 
is put among the damned, that being his destiny upon death. 

This brings to my mind a story told by Livy. " The Athe- 
" nians," says he, " drew upon themselves a war with Philip, 
" on a very slight occasion ; at a time, when nothing remained 
" of their antient fortune, but their high spirit. Two young 
" Acarnanians, during the days of initiation, themselves un- 
" initiated and ignorant of all that related to that secret wor- 
" ship, entered the Temple of Ceres along with the crowd. 
" Their discourse soon betrayed them ; as making some absurd 
" inquiries into what they saw : so being brought before the 
" President of the Mysteries, although it was evident they 
" had entered ignorantly, and without design, they were put 
" to death, as guilty of a most abominable impiety q ." 

The Phlegvae here mentioned, I take to be those people of 
Boeotia spoke of by Pausanias, who attempting to plunder the 
Temple of Apollo at Delphi, were almost all destroyed by 
lightning, earthquakes, and pestilence : hence Phlegyae, I sup- 
pose, signified impious, sacrilegious persons in general ; and is 
so to be understood here. 

The office Theseus is put upon, of admonishing his hearers 
ao-ainst impiety, could not sure be discharged by any one so 
\vell, in the Shews of the Mysteries, as by him who repre- 
sented the violator of them. And here it is to be observed, 
that our view of things frees this passage from an absurdity, 
which the critics knew not how to remove : who saw there 
could not be a more impertinent employment, than perpetually 
sounding in the ears of the damned this admonition : 


q Contraxerant autem cum Philippo bellum Athenienses haud quaquam digna 
causa, dum ex vetere fortuna nihil praeter animos servant. Acarnanes duo ju- 
venes per initiorum dies, non initiati, templum Cereris, imprudentes Religionis, 
cum cetera turba ingressi sunt. Facile eos sermo prodidit, absurde quaedam 
percunctantes ; deductique ad antistites templi. cum palam esset, pev errorem 
in°-ressos, tanquam ob infandum scelus, interfecti sunt. — Hist. lib. 31. 


For though it was a sentence of great truth and dignity, it was 
very uselessly preached amongst those to whom there was no 
room for pardon or remission. 

Even the ridiculous Scarron, who has employed all his poor 
talents in abusing the most useful Poem that ever was written, 
hath not neglected to urge this objection against it : 

" Cette sentence est bonne et belle, 
" Mais en enfer de quoi sert-elle ?" 

And it must be confessed that, according to the common ideas 
of Aeneas's Descent into Hell, Virgil hath put Theseus on a 
very impertinent office. 

But nothing could be juster, or more useful than this conti- 
nued admonilion, if we suppose Virgil to be here giving a 
representation of what was said during the celebration of the 
Shews of the Mysteries : for then it was addressed to the vast 
Multitude of living Spectators. But that this admonitory cir- 
cumstance made part of the representations is not a bare sup- 
position. Aristides expressly tells us, that no where was more 
astonishing words sung than in these Mysteries ; the reason for 
such practice was, that the sounds and sights might mutually 
assist each other in making an impression on the minds of the 
initiated. But, from a passage in Pindar I conclude, that in 
the Shews of the Mysteries (from whence men took their ideas 
of the infernal regions) it was customary for each offender, re- 
presented under punishment, to make his admonition against 
his own crime, as he passed by in machinery. " It is reported," 
says Pindar, " that Ixion, while he is incessantly turning round 
" his rapid wheel, calls out to this effect to Mortals, that 
" they shoukl be always at hand to repay a benefactor for the 
" kindnesses he had done them f ." Where the word BPOTOI, 
living men, seems plainly to shew that the speech was first 
made before men in this world. 

The Poet closes his catalogue of the damned with these 
words : 

" Ausi omnes immane nefas, ausoque potiti." 

For the ancients had generally a notion that an action was 
sanctified by success wnich they esteemed a mark of the favour 
and approbation of Heaven. As this was a very pernicious 
opinion, it was necessary to teach that the imperial villain who 

r I~/«v« tyavri raura, 
Hoorols Xiynv, \i stn^oivri roo%M 
Ylc.jra x,vXivdo[/.i)to)), 
Toji ihpyirat ayavou; iueiScus 
Eifi%ope,i»8s r'ivio-$ai.— 2. Pyth. 


enslaved his country, and the baffled plotter wlio died on a 
gibbet, were equally the objects of Divine justice. 

Aeneas,now passed Tartarus, comes to the borders of Ely- 
sium. Here he undergoes the Lustration : 

" Occupat Aeneas aditum, corpusque recenti 

" Spargit aqua, ramumque adverso in limine figit." 

And thus ends thelesser Mvsteries. Being now about to un- 
dergo the lustrations (says Sopater) which immediately precede 
initiation into the greater Mysteries, they called me happy s . 
The hero now enter* on the greater Mysteries, and comes to the 
abodes of the blessed: 

" Devenere lacos laetos, et amoena vireta 
" Fortunatorum nemorum, sedesque beatas : 
" Largior hic campos aether, et lumine vestit 
" Purpureo : solemque suum, sua sidera norunt." 

The initiated were now callecl 'Ero7r7a» as before, Mvsxi, 
and this representation ' Avro-^lz. The "Avro-^ia, or the behold- 
ing with their own eyes, (says Psellus) is when he who is ini- 
tiated beholds the divine Lights'. 

In the very same manner Themistius describes the initiated 
just entered upon this scene. — It being thoroughly purified, he 
now discloses to the initiated, a region' all over illuminated, 
and shining with a divine splendour. The cloud and thick 
darkness are dispersed; and the mind emerges, as it were, into 
day, full of ligbt and cheerfulness, as before, of disconsolate 

s MsXXw* 2s ro7; xa^aoo-Ut;, ro7; ttoi rr,; nXirri;, tvruyfcuvuv, ixuXav luiaiftovu iftaurov. 
In Divis. Quaest. 

1 ' Auro^iu l?)v, oruv uvro; o ri/.iftvjo; rd §i7a <pi»ru opu. In Scliol. in Orac. Zoroast. 

u This which was all over illuminated, and which the Priest had thoroughly 
purified, was uyu/.y.u, an image. The reason of niv transferring what is said of its 
illumination to the Region is, because this image repiestnted the appearances of 
the Divine Being. Thus Jamblicus de Mysteriis: Mst« on ruvra r5v dvroipuvMv 
ArAAMATfiN" /.oyv; upopio-affja. kxiv h ftiv ru7; rcZv SicZv ATTO^FIAIS htoyissgu xai 
eturr,; rn; uXr,faiu; oparui ru Biduura, uxpiSoj; n oiuXdftTzi, xui otr,pfyojftiva y.uftT^oj; 
ixtpuivirui. — And again 'P.o-avroj; roivvv xui iti ts ^liTOS- ra fttv rwv SicZv ATAAMATA 
(fcorl; zrXtov urpdvTru. Sect. 2. c. 4. Hence it appears that these mystical images 
were only a great light which illuminated all around. To this, the following lines 
in the oracles of Zoroaster allude : 

Msi <pii;ico; xulAcr,; ATTOnTON ATAAMA, 
Ou yao %o»i xuvx; ffi /SXsVi/x nrpiv cuftu TEAE20H • 

Invoke not the self-conspicuous image of nature, for thou must not behold these 
things before tliy body be purified by initiation. This ulro-rrov uyuXftu was only a 
diffusive shining light, as the name partly declares, thus desciibed presently after 
in the same oracles. 

'Hvixu /3>.s\^-/!s pootpr,; urtg \uitpov sruo, 
Auf/.Tofdvov o-xiprrihlv o'/.a xura fiivhu xifffti, 
K?.vh zrvpo; tpcivhv. 


The lines, 

" Largior hic campos aether, et lumine vestit 

" Purpureo ; Solemque suum, sua sidera norunt," 

are in the very language of those, who profess to tell us what 
they saw at their initiation into the greater Mysteries. " Nocte 
" media vidi solem candido coruscantem lumine," says Apuleius 
(Met. Lib. XI.) on that oecasion ; for " candido" and " pur- 
M pureo lumine" mean the very same thing. 

Here Virgil, by forsaking Homer, and following the repre- 
sentations of the Mysteries, in their amiable paintings of Ely- 
sium, hath avoided a terrible fault his master fell into; who 
hath given so unamiable and joyless a picture of the " fortunata 
" nemora,' 11 that they can raise no desire or appetite for them ; 
defeating thereby the intent of the legislator in propagating the 
belief of them. He makes even his favourite hero himself, who 
possessed them, tell Ulysses, that he had rather be a day- 
labourer above, than command tlie regions of the dead : and 
all his heroes in general are described as in an unhappy state : 
nay, to mortify every excitement to great and virtuous actions, 
he makes reputation, fame, and glory, the great spurs to well- 
doing in the Pagan world, and which in no world should be 
entirely taken off, to be visionary and impertinent. On the 
contrary, Virgil, whose sole aim, in this Poem, was the good of 
society, makes fame and love of glory so strong passions in the 
other world, that the Sibyl's promise to Palinurus, only that 
his name should be perpetuated, rejoices his shade evenin the 
regions of the unhappy : 

" Aeternumqne locus Palinuri nomen habebit: 
" His dictis curae emotae, pulsusque parumper 
" Corde dolor tristi gaudet cognomine terra." 

It was this ungracious description of the other world, and the 
licentious stories of the Gods, both so pernicious to society, 
that made Plato banish Homer out of his Republic. 

But to return. — The Poet having described the climate of 
the happy regions, speaks next of the amusements of its inha- 

" Pars in gramineis exercent membra palaestris ; 
" Contendunt ludo, et fulva luctantur arena." 

Besides the obvious allusion, in these lines, to the philosophy 
of Plato, concerning the duration of the passions, it seems to 
have a more secret one to what he had all the way in his eye, 
the Eleusinian Mysteries; whose celebration was accompanied 
with the Grecian Games. On which account too, p?rhaps, it 


was that, in the disposition of his work, his fifth book is em- 
ployed in the Games, as a prelude to the Descent in the sixth. 

1. The iirst place, in the happy regions, the poet gives to 
the legislators, and those who brought mankind from a state of 
nature into society : 

" Magnanimi Heroes, nati melioribus annis." 

At the head of these is Orpheus, the most renowned of the Eu- 
ropean legislators ; but better known under the character of 
Poet : for the irst laws being written in measure, to allure men 
to learn them, and when learnt, to retain them ; the fable would 
have it, that Orpheus softened the savages of Thrace by the 
force of harmony : 

Threicius longa cum veste sacerdos 

" Obloquitur numeris septem discrimina vocum." 

But he has the first place, because he was not only a lawgiver, 
but the bringer of the Mysteries into that part of Europe. 

2. The next place is allotted to patriots, and those who died 
for the service of their country : 

" Hic manus, ob patriam pugnando vulnera passi." 

3. The third to virtuous and pious priests : 

" Quique sacerdotes casti, dum vita manebat ; 
" Quique pii vates et Phoebo digna locuti." 

For it was of principal use to society, that religious men should 
lead holy lives, and teach nothing of the Gods but what was 
agreeable to the Divine Nature. 

4. The last place is given to the inventors of arts mechanical 
and liberal : 

" Inventas aut qui vitam excoluere per artes ; 
" Quique sui memores alios fecere merendo." 

The order is exact and beautiful. The first class consists of 
the founders of society, heroes, and lawgivers : the second, of 
its supporters, patriots and holy priests : and the third of those 
who adorned it, the inventors of the arts of life, and recorders 
of worthy actions. 

Virgil has here all along closely followed the teachers in the 
Mysteries, who incessantly inculcated that virtue only could 
entitle men to happiness ; and that rites, ceremonies, lustrations, 
and sacrifices could not supply the want of it. 

But now, notwithstanding the entire conformity between all 
these scenes and those represented in the Mysteries, something 
is still wanting to give the last conviction to the truth of our 


interpretation ; and that is, tlie famous Secret of the Mys- 
teries, of which so much hath been said in the last Section ; 
where we have endeavoured to bring it to light, and shew it to 
have been the doctrine of the Unity of the Godhead. Had 
Virgil neglected to give us this prmcipal circumstance, though 
we must needs have said his intention was to represent an 
Initiation, we had been forced to own he had done it imper- 
fectly. But he was too good a painter, to leave any thing am- 
biguous in his drawings ; and hath therefore concluded his 
hero's initiation, as was the custom, with instructing him in the 
AriOPPHTA, or the doctrine of the Unity. Till this was 
done, the initiated was not arrived to the highest stage of per- 
fection ; nor was in the fullest sense entitled to the appellation 

of Enorrras. 

Musaeus, therefore, who had been hierophant at Athens, is 
made to conduct him to the place, where his father's shade 
opens to him this hidden doctrine of perfection, in these sub- 
lime words : 

" Principio coelum,ac terras, camposque liquentes, 
" Lucentemque globum Lunae, Titaniaque astra 
" Spiritus Intus altt, totamque infusa per artus 
" Mens agitat molem, et magno se corpore miscet. 
" Inde hominum pecudumque genus, vitaeque volantum, 
" Et quae marmoreo fert monstra sub aequore pontus." 

This was no other than the doctrine of the old Egvptians, as we 
are assured by Plato, who says (in Cratylo), they taught that 
Jupiter was the " Spirit which pervadeth all things." 

We shall shew how easily the Greek philosophy corrupted 
this principle into (what is now called) Spinozism (Book 3. 
Sect. 4.) Here Virgil has approved his judgment to great 
advantage. Nothing was more abhorrent from the Mysteries 
than Spinozism, as it overturned the doctrine of a future state 
of rewards and punishments, which the Mysteries so diligently 
inculcated ; and yet the principle itself, of which Spinozism 
was the abuse, was cherished there, as it was the consequence of 
the doctrine of the Unity, the grand secret of the Mysteries. 
Virgil, therefore, delivers the principle with great caution, and 
pure and free of the abuse ; though he understood the nature of 
Spinozism, and, by the following lines in his Fourth Georgic, 
appears to have been infected with it : 

" Deum namque ire per omnes 

" Terrasque tractusque maris, coelumque profundum 
" Hinc pecudes, armenta, viros, genus omne ferarum 
" Quemque sibi tenues nascentem arcessere vitas. 
" Scilicet huc reddi denique ac resoluta referri 
" Omnia." 


But the Mysteries did not teach the doctrine of the Unity for 
mere speculation ; but, as we said before, to obviate certain 
mischiefs of polytheism, and to support the belief of a Provi- 
dence. Now, as a future state of rewards and punishments did 
not quite remove the objections to its inequalities here,the Mys- 
teries added to it the doctrine of the Metempsychosis, or the 
belief of a prior state x . And this, likewise, our Poet has been 
careful to record. For after having revealed the great secret 
of the Unity, he goes on to speak of the Metempsychosis, or 
transmigration, in the following manner : 

" Has omnes, ubi mille rotam volvere per annos, 
" Lethaeum ad fluvium Deus evocat agmine magno 
" Scilicet immemores supera ut convexa revisant, 
" Rursus et incijDiant in corpora velle reverti." 

And thence takes occasion to explain the nature and use of a 
Popish Purgatorv, which, in his hero^s passage through that 
region, had not been done : this affords him also a fine oppor- 
tunity for that noble episode, the procession of the hero's pos- 
terity, which passes in review before him : and with this the 
scene closes. One might well allow Virgil the use of so im- 
portant a digression (considering who it was whom he celebrated 
under the name of Aeneas), though it had been foreign to the 
nature of the Mysteries he is describing. But indeed he was 
even here following their customs very closely. It was then, 
and had been for some time, the practice of the Mysteries, when 
communicated to any aspirant of distinguished quality , to exhibit 
to him, in their Shews and Representations, something oracular, 
relating to his own fortune and affairs. Thus Himerius tells 
us that Olympias, on her uprising, after the birth of Alexander 
the Great, was initiated into the Samothracian Mysteries ; 
where, in the Shews, she saw her husband Philip, at that time 
in Potidaea. 

We have, in attending the hero's progress through the three 
estates of the dead, at almost every step he made, shewn from 
some ancient author the exact conformity of his adventures to 
those of the initiated in the Mysteries. We shall now collect 
all these scattered lights to a point ; which will, I am persuaded, 
throw such a lustre on our interpretation, as will make the truth 
irresistible. To this purpose I shall beg leave to transcribe a 
remarkable passage of an ancient writer, preserved by Stobaeus : 
which is as exact a description of Aeneas's adventure, as of tliat 
it was designed for, namely, the Shews of the Mysteries. His 
words are these : " The mind is affected in Death, just as it is 
" in the initiation into the grand Mysteries. And word answers 

x Vid. Porph. de Abst. Lib. 4. sect. 16. et Cic. Frag. ex lib. de Philosophia. 


** to word, aswell as thlng to thing : for TEAETTAtN Is, to 
"die; and TEAEI20AI, to be initiated. The first stage is 
" nothing but errors and uncertainties ; laboripua wanderings ; 
" a rude and fearful march through night and darkness. And 
" now arrived on the verge of Death, and Initiation, every 
'* thing wears a dreadful aspect : it is all horror, trembling, 
" sweating, and aftrightment. But this scene once past, a 
" miraculous and divine light discloses itself : and shining plains 
" and flowery meadows open on all hands before them. Here 
" they are entertained with hymns and dances, with the sublime 
" doctrines of sacred knowledge, and with reverend and holy 
" visions. And now become perfect and initiated they are free, 
" and no longer under restraints ; but crowned and triumphant, 
" they walk up and down the regions of the blessed ; converse 
" with pure and holy men ; and celebrate the sacred Mysteries 
" at. pleasure s ." 

The progress finished, and every thing over, Aeneas and his 
guide are let out again to the upper regions, through the ivory 
gate. For we are told there are two; one of horn and the other 
of ivory ; and that true visions proceed from the first, and false 
from the latter. 

" Sunt geminae Somni portae: quarum altera fertur 
" Cornea, qua veris facilis datur exitus umbris: 
" Altera candenti perfecta nitens elephanto; 
" Sed falsa ad coelum mittunt insomnia manes. 
" His ubi tum natum Anchises, unaque Sibyllam 
" Prosequitur dictis, portaque emittit eburna." 

Upon which Servius, with the cold sentiments of a grammarian, 
only says, " Vult autem intelligi, falsa esse omnia quae dixit." 
He would have you understand by this, that all he has been 
saying is false and groundless. And this is the common inter- 
pretation of the critics. Ruaeus, one of the best of them, 
speaks to the same purpose : " Cum igitur Virgiiius Aeneam 
" eburnea porta emittit, indicat profecto, quidquid a se de illo 
" inferorum aditu dictum est, in fabulis esse numerandum." 
This conclusion is strengthened by the circumstance of Virgii's 
being an epicurean; and speaking to the saine purpose, in his 
second Georgic: 

" Felix, qui potuit rerum cognoscere causas, 

" Atque metus omnes et inexorabile fatum 

" Subjecit pedibus, strepitumque Acherontis avari !" 

But what a wretched conclusion do these men make the divine 
Poet put to this master-piece of all his works ! which he wrote, 

s Sermo cxix. 

268 warbt;rton's examination 

not to amuse old women and children in a winter's evening, in 
the taste of the Milesian Fables; but for the use of men and 
citizens; to instruct them in the duties of humanity and so- 
ciety. His ends, therefore, in this book must have been, first, 
to make the doctrine of a future state useful incivil life; which 
it is evident he has done in the distribution of the rewards and 
punishments of it. Secondly, to set his hero on an adventure 
worthy his character. Now, if we will believe our critics, when 
he has strained all his nerves, throughout a whole book, to 
compass these ends, and got at length to the conclusion, he 
wantonly defeats them with one senseless dash of his pen; that 
speaks to this effect: " I have laboured, countrymen, to draw 
" you to virtue, and to deter you from vice, in order to make 
" every particular, and society in general, fiourishing and 
" hajopy. And doing this by example, I have inculcated the 
" truths I would teach you in the adventures of your great an- 
" cestor and founder ; of whom, to do you the greater honour, 
" I have made an accomplished hero ; and put upon the most 
" divine and hazardous undertaking, the instituting a civil 
" policy ; and, to sanctify his character, and add sanction to his 
" laws, I have sent hiin on the errand you see here related: but 
" lest the adventure should do you any service, or my hero any 
" honour, I must inform you, that all this talk of a future state 
" is an idle, childish notion, and our hero's part therein only a 
" Lenten dream. In a word, all that you have heard, must 
" pass for an unmeaning revery; from which you are to draw 
" no consequences, but that the Poet was in a capricious hu- 
" mour, and disposed to laugh at your superstitions." — At this 
rate, I say, is Virgil made to speak, in the interpretation of 
antient and modern critics. 

The truth is, this difficulty can never be got over, but upon 
our interpretation, that the story of the Descent signifies only 
an initiation into the Mysteries. This wiil unriddle the aenigma, 
and restore the Poet to himself. For if this was VirgiPs inten- 
tion, it is to be presumed, he would give some private mark to 
ascertain his meaning; for which no place was so proper as the 
conclusion. He has therefore, with a beauty of invention pecu- 
liar to him, made this fine improvement on Homer's story of 
the two gates; who imagined that of horn for true visions, 
and that of ivory for false. By the first, Virgil insinuates the 
reality of another state ; and by the second, the shadowy re- 
presentations of it in the shews of the Mysteries : so that the 
visions of Aeneas were false, not as there was no ground or 
foundation for a future state ; but, as those he saw, were not 
indeed in hell, but in the teinple of Ceres. The representation 
being called MT0O2 wr lio-^riv. And this we propose as the 
true meaning of 


" Altera caridenti perfecta nitens elephanto: 

" Secl falsa acl coelum mittunt insornnia manes." 

Fbr falsa insomnia do not signify lying but shadowy dreams. 
Thus the Roman widow, in the fiimous sepulchral inscription', 
begs the Dii manes to be so indulgent to ner husband's shade, 
that she may see him in her dreams ; that is, seem to see him, 
as the shade of Hector was seen by Aeneas, 

" In somnis ecce ante oculos moestissimus Hector 
" Visus adesse mihi" 

and this, in distinction from what that Roman widow makes 
the other part of her prayer, viz., to be really joined to him in 
the other world. But though the dream that issued from it 
was unsubstantial, I make no question but the ivory gate itself 
was real. It appears, indeed, to be neither more nor less than 
the sumptuous gate of the Temple, through which the initiated 
came out when the celebration was over. This was of an im- 
mense bigness, as appears from the words of Apuleius: " Senex 
" comissimus ducit me protinus ad ipsas fores aedis amphs- 
" simae*-." Strabo is more particular. Next (says he) is 
Eleusis, in which is theTemple of the Eleusinian Ceres,and the 
mystic cell built by Ictinus, " capable of holdiag as large a num- 
ber as a theatre b ." But Vitruvius's description of it is still 
morecurious: " Eleusinae Cereris et Proserpinae cellam im- 
" mani magnitudine Ictinus Dorico more, sine exterioribus co- 
" lumnis ad laxamentum usus sacrificiorum pertexit. Eam 
" autem postea, cum Demetrius Phalereus Athenis rerum poti- 
" retur, Philon ante Templum in fronte columnis constitutis 
" Prostylon fecit. Ita aucto vestibulo laxamentum initiantibus 
" operisque summam adjecit autoritatem ." And Aristides 
thought this the most extraordinary circumstance in the whole 
affair. But this, (says he) was most wonderful and divine, that 
this of all the public assemblies of Greece, was the only one 
which was contained together within one edifice d . 

Here was room, we see, and so purposely. contrived, for all 
these shews and representations. And now, as we have said so 
much of them, yet occasionally, and by parts, it will not be 
amiss, before we conclude, to give a general and concise idea of 
them. I take the substance of the celebration to be a kind of 
drama of thehistory of Ceres, which afforded opportunity to re- 
present these three things, about which the Mysteries were prin- 

z ApudGrut. P. 786. «Metam.l. 11. 

** EiV 'EXst/ff-iv ztoXi;, h ri ro rr,i Ar./i^r^a; k(>ov rns 'EXitHrivlas, xai o fivzixl; trtixoi, o 
xa.riixx.iva.Siv 'lx\7yos, o%}.ov S-urgis \i\aa$u.i Hvvuftzvov, L-ib. 9. Geog". 

c De Arcliitec. Praef. ad 1. 7. 

d To Sl S-/j ftiyifov Snoroflov, f/.'om» yap ravrrci zfuv/iyvgiuv li$ oixo; cvXXuZuiv iifct. 
Eleusin. Orat. 


cipally concerned. 1. The rlse and establishment of Civil 
Soeiety. 2. The doctrine of a future state of Rewards and 
Punishments. 3. The detection of the Error of Polytheism, 
and the principle of the Unitv. The goddess^s Legislation in 
Sicily and Attica, at both which places she was said to civilize 
the savage manners of the inhabitants, gave birth to the first e ; 
her search for her daughter Proserpine in hell, to the second ; 
and her resentment against the Gods for the theft, to the third*. 

I have now gone through my explanation of this famous voy- 
age. And, if I be not greatly deceived, the view in which I 
have placed it, not only clears up and explains a number of 
difficulties inexplicable on any other scheme; but likewise gives 
an uncommon grace and elegance of perfection to the whole 
Poem: for now this famous Episode appears to be entirely of a 
piece with the main subject ; which is the erection of a civil 
Policy and a Religion : For custom had made initiation into 
the Mysteries an indispensable preparative to that arduous 

Thus far then concerning the Legislator's care to perpetuate 
the doctrine of a future state: and if we have been longer than 
ordinary on this head,our excuse is,that this doctrine is the main 
subject of our general inquiry. That the magistrate cultivated 
the belief of it, with a more than common labour, is evident 
from this very extraordinary circumstance. — There are several 
savage nations, discovered by modern travellers, which, in the 
revolutions and distractions of Government, being forced to re- 
move their seats, it is probable, have fallen from a civilized, to 
a barbarous life. These are found to be without anv know- 
ledge of a God, or appearance of Religion: and yet, which is 
wonderful, to entertain the belief ancl expectation of a future 
state. A miracle that can be accounted for in no other way, 
than by what has been said above of the Legislators principal 
concern in the support of this doctrine ; and of the deep root 
it takes in the mind, by its agreeable nature, when once it is 
received. So that though, as we have observed, " no Religion 
" ever existed without the doctrine of a future state, yet the 
" doctrine of a future state has existed withoutReligion." 

c That the establishment of society or the image of savag-e and polished man- 
ners was represented in the Mysteries, I collect from several circumstances. Dio- 
dorus tells us, that in the Sicilian feasts of Ceres, which lasted ten davs, was re- 
presented the antient manner of living-, before men had learned the use and culture 

APXAION EION. P. 200. Steph. Ed. 

f Tfns circumsfance Apollodorus informs us of; his words are these : MaeSra. 
II -sra.% igpriviuiv, 8*t MXir&a avrr,v ygvreunv, OPriZOMENH ©E0I2, AIIAEmEN Ot- 
PANON. iixaftuff» }l yvmiKi; nmv t't$ 'Eteuriw Bibl. 1, 1. c. 5. 





[It was at first the Editor's intention to have arranged the following 
Remarks of Dr. Jortin on Virgil in the order in which they 
apply to the respective Books, beginning with the Georgics ; 
but this was found impracticable, owing to the peculiar manner 
in which a number of these Remarks originated, and the various 
communications which at distant intervals of time were sub- 
mitted to the learned Author, arising from previous criticisms 
on disputed passages, or from erroneous interpretation of words. 

An Index, therefore, is prefixed to this portion of the Work, to en- 
able the Reader to refer to every passage whereon any remark 
is made.] 





















27S — 286 

278 — 290 
id. — 302 
id. — 286 

279 — 286 


279 — 290 




276 INDEX. 



70 2S1 


256 292 

500 .. 282 

501 289 

632 • .283 


495 283 — 300 


95 307 

608 ........ id. 


135 302 

427 30S 

443 2S3 

674 id. 


9 . . 308 

131 284 — 304 

630 id. 

633 303 


252 306 


469 308 


258 308 

405 2S5 

705 284 





Virgil is so good a poet, that it is almost ridiculous to com- 
mend him. If I should say that he is the-best of the Latin 

foets, I should only add my opinion to that of all good judges. 
rather choose to observe that he is not much superior to 
Lucretius, and that it was no small advantage to him to have 
had so excellent a poet before him. If any one thinks that 
Lucretius ought not to be placed so near to Virgil, let him 
try whether he can find better lines in Virgil than these : 

" Apparet Divum numen, sedesque quietae : 
" Quas neque concutiunt venti, neque nubila nimbis 
" Adspergunt, neque nix acri concreta pruina 
" Cana cadens violat ; semperque innubilus aether 
" Integit, et large diffuso lumine ridet." iii. 18. 

Of all the Latin poets, none has come down to us less cor- 
rupted than Virgil, which is owing, amongst other causes, to 
the ancient manuscripts, which Pierius made so good use of, 
and to the notes of Servius. 

Georg. 11.285. 

Virgil advises to set trees at certain distances from each 
other, in a regular order, 

" Non animum modo uti pascat prospectus inanem ; 
" Sed quia non aliter vires dabit omnibus aequas 
V Terra." 

Perhaps it might be, 

" prospectus inanis." 



Not only for the bare pleasure which arises from a regular 
prospect, but because the trees thrive the better. 

Aen. I. 468. 

" Animum pictura pascit inani." 

Georg. III. 432. 
Speaking of a serpent, he says, 

" Postquam exusta palus, terraeque ardore dehiscunt, 
" Exsilit in siccum, et flammantia lumina torquens 
" Saevit agris, asperque sitiatque exterritus aestu." 

l * Exterritus aestu," frightened at the heat. I used to think 
it should be " exercitus aestu," tormented with heat. I find 
in Ursinus, that " exercitus' 1 is in a very good manuscript 
which he made use of. 

Georg.IV. 405. 

" Verum ubi correptum mambus vinctisque tenebis ;" 

Might it not be, " manicis." So ver. 439, 

— — " manicisque jacentem occupat." 

Aen. II. 145. 

" Ipse viro primus manicas atque arcta levari 
" Vincla jubet Priamus." 

But I think the common reading may do very well. 

Georg. IV. 415. 
Liquidum ambrosiae diffundit odorem : 

" Quo totum nati corpus perduxit." 

Servius his note is " Unxit eum quo posset esse videndi numi- 
nis capax." It should be, I think, " vincendi," or " vinciendi 
numinis capax." She anointed him to give him strength to 
struggle with Proteus. I suppose that was what Servius in- 
tended to say ; and it seems confirmed by what follows in 

" Habilis membris venit vigor." 

See Hom. Odyss. A. v. 384, fyc, whom Virgil has here imu 

Georg. IV. 516. 
" Nulla Venus, non ulli animum flexere hymenaei." 


Some copies have, 

" Nullique animum." 

Perhaps it should be, 

" Nulla Venus, nulli animum flexere hymenaei." 

Virgil has a great many such hiatus's. Ancl, wherever almost 
an hiatus occurs, the transcribers have botched up the verse one 
foolish way or other, as appears from the various readings. 

Aen. 1.271. 

" At puer Ascanius, (cui nunc cognomen Iulo 
" Additur, Ilus erat dum res stetit Ilia regno) 
" Triginta." 

I believe if Virgil had revised his poem he would have struck 
out what is here in a parenthesis. They are the words of 
Jupiter to Venus, who could not want to be informed of any 
of the names of Ascanius. 

Aen. I. 604. 

" Grates persolvere dignas 

Non opis est nostrae, Dido- 

" Dii tibi, si qua pios respectant numina, si quid 
" Usquam justitiae est, et mens sibi conscia recti 
" Praemia digna ferant." 

Perhaps it should be " ferent." That is, " Dii tibi, et consci- 
" entia, qua nullum virtuti theatrum majus est, reddent praemia, 
" quibus nos non sumus reddendis." So Aen.IX.252. Aletes, 
praising Nisus and Euryalus says ; 

" Quae vobis, quae digna, viri, pro laudibus istis 
" Praemia posse rear solvi ? pulcherrima primum 
" Dii moresque dabunt vestri." 

So here it may be with " ferent ;" that it may be an affirmatioH 
and not a wish. Though we cannot reward you, you cannot 
miss of a recompense. 

Aen. II. 154. 
Sinon says, 

" Vos, aeterni ignes, et non violabile vestrum 
" Testor numen." — 

By " aeterni ignes," are understood the sun and moon, or the 
sun, moon, and stars, to whom they used commonly to address 

u 2 


themselves in their most solemn oaths and invocations. 
learned author corrects this place, and reads, 

" et non violabile Vestae 

" Testor numen." 

Thus he makes " aeterni ignes" to signify the sacred fires of 
Vesta, which were kept ever burning ; and thus Sinon swears 
by what was most sacred amongst the Trojans. 

Aen. II. 296. 

" Sic ait : et manibus vittas, Vestamque potentem, 
" Aeternumque adytis effert penetralibus ignem." 

The alteration is very ingenious ; but there is a difficulty at- 
tending it, which arises from Sinon's behaviour and gesture 
when he swears. In Homer, when Althaea, the mother of 
Meleager, calls upon the Gods below to punish her son, she 
strikes the ground with her hand, 

r, px .jEOiff' 

HoXX aLj^iova fiqocfo, r.tx-atywvoia (flovoio* 

" Jjoxxl ob Kttl TAIAN woXo(po § Cryv XEP2IN AAOIA, 

" KixXrlffxouff' Aior/v, xai eTraivrjv He^ffefpoveiav, 

'* n^o^vy xx^E^o/xivr,, Seuovto £e Sxxqugi xoXttoi, 

" Tlaa^l So/xev Ztxvxtov' TriaV riicotyofTis 'Kqivvus 

""ExXt/ev 1% 'Ege'£ei/ffipjv, d/AeiKixov y,toq e-^oyffa." II. I. 562. 

And when Juno calls upon the infernal Deities, she uses the 
same action, 

" AutIk Ihreir riqxTO fiowiris < noTvtx"H.qn, 


" (pXTO [Av9ov, 

" KexXi/Te vvv fxoi, T^oux xxl Ouqxvos zuqus uTTiqQev, 

" TtTr,vis Te .jeoj, to\ utio yfiovl vxietxovtes 

" Txqrxoov aix^i (/.eyav." Hymn. ad Apollin. ver. 332. 

In Virgil, when Cloanthus makes a vow to the sea-gods, he 
stretches out his hands to the waves. 

Aen. V. 233. 

" palmas ponto tendens utrasque Cloanthus." 

Sinon lifts up his hands to the skies, 

" Sustulit exutas vinclis ad sidera palmas;" 

And says immediately, 

" Vos aetemi ignes." 



By which words, if Vesta's fires had been meant, Sinon would 
have stretched out his hands towards Troy, where those fires 
were burning. 

Aen. 11.213. 

" Et primum parva duorum 

" Corpora natorum serpens amplexus uterque 
" Inplicat, et miseros morsu depascitnr artus." 

There is no fault to be found with this reading. But I fancy 
that in Servius's copy it was, 

" teneros morsu depascitur artus." 

For this is his note; " Implicat. Hoc ad mollitiem infantum 
" corporis dixit." There is no sense in this. To make sense of 
it, it must be, " Teneros. Hoc ad mollitiem," fyc. But I 
will not be positive that even thus there is much sense in it, or 
that this note was written by Servius. 

Aen. III. 70. 
" Et lenis crepltans voeat Auster in altum." 

Some MSS. have " lene;" which Cunningham, in his Horace, 
says is the true reading. I think he is mistaken. If you place 
the words thus in construction, 

" Lenis Auster crepitans vocat," 

you may defend it by an hundred examples ; nothing being 
more commonly to be met with in the best poets than two epi- 
thets, one of which is a participle. 

Georg. IV. 19. 

" tenuis fugiens per gramina rivus." 

Ibid. 425. 

" Jam rapidus torrens sitientes Sirius Indos." 

Aen. XI. 490. 

" Fulgebatque alta decurrens aureus arce." 

Ibid. 832. 

" immensus surgens ferit aurea clamor 

" Sidera." 

So that Servius trifles when he says, " Duo epitheta posuit 
" vitiose." 

But I understand the place thus; " Auster, lenis crepitans, 


" i. e. leniter crepitans, vocat in altum." An adjective is often 
more elegant than an adverb. 

Georg. I. 163. , 

" Tardaque Eleusinae matris volventia plaustra." 

Georg. III. 28. 

" undantem bello, magnumque fluentem 

« Nilum." 

Aen. IX. 755. 

" et sil?ilat ore 

" Arduus insurgens. 1 " 

Aen. XII. 
ft Altior insurgens, et cursu concitus heros." 

Besides the letter s repeated in lenis, crepitans seems better to 
express what Virgil elsewhere calls, 

" Venientis sibilus Austri," 

than " lene crepitans" does. 

Observe also that Virgil expresses himself in another place in 
the same manner on a like occasion. Aen. V. 764. 

" Creber et aspirans rursus vocat Auster in altum." 

So Homer, speaking of a brother of Auster, 

" 'Xlr y ots x.ivri<j£i Qtyvpos f3iz9u \rjiov sXQuv 

« AABPOS EnAinznN." II. B. 147. 

The adjective, as I said, is often elegantly put in the place of 
the adverb. Take these passages of Horace for examples ; 

" Ut pura nocturno renidet 

" Luna mari." Carm. II. v. 19. 

" Nec vespertinus circumgemit ursus ovile." 

Epod. XVI. 51. 
So Milton, Paradise Lost, Book VII. 305. 

" All but within those banks, where rivers now 
" Stream, and perpetual draw their humid train." 

Aen. IV. 500. 

" Non tamen Anna novis praetexere funera sacris 
" Germanam credit, nec tantos mente furores 
" Concipit, aut graviora timet, quam morte Sichaei. 
" Ergo jussa parat." 


If " concipit furores mente," be the sarae thing as " furit " 
(and I do not see what else it can mean,) then this place cannot 
be right. It must be, 

" nec tantos mente furores 

" Concipere." 

In this book, ver. 474, the poet says of Dido, 

" Ergo ubi concepit furias evicta dolore, 
" Decrevitque mori." 

Aen. IV. 632. 

" Tum breviter Barcen nutricem affata Sichaei, 

" Namque suam patria antiqua cinis ater habebat:" 

This second line does not appear to be Virgil's ; H cinis ater 
habebat suam patria antiqua," is an unusual expression. 

Aen. V. 495. 

" Tertius Eurytion, tuus, O clarissime, frater, 

" Pandare : qui quondam, jussus confundere foedus, 

" In medios telum torsisti primus Achivos." 

Minerva persuaded Pandarus to do this base action. 

" Tw £s (pgevar oitpgovi ?3HQtv." Hom. II. A. 104. 

Which made me fancy that it might be, 
" Suasus confundere foedus." 

But " jussus" is better. It became Virgil to favour as much 
as he possibly could the Trojans and their friends. And there- 
fore he says " jussus" to excuse the conduct of this hero. 

Aen. VII. 443. 

" Cura tibi divum effigies et templa tueri : 
" Bella viri pacemque gerant." 

Pierius says that all the old MSS. have " gerent." Why 
should \ve not read so then ? 

Virgil here copies Homer, who says, zsohz^os cT avlozaoi (asXwgsi. 

II. Z. 
Aen. VII. 674. 

" Ceu duo nubigenae cum vertice montis ab alto 
" Descendunt Centauri, Homolen Othrymque nivalem 
" Linquentes cursu rapido: dat euntibus ingens 
" Silva locura, et magno cedunt virgulta fragore" 


Servius^s note is " cum utique cedit silva, cedunt et virgulta — 
" Aminore autem ad majus venire debuerat." The observation 
is just. This beautiful description is unhappily closed. Nothing 
can be greater than, 

" dat euntibus ingens 

" Silva locum." 

It should not have been followed by, 

" magno cedunt virgulta fragore." 

Aen. VIII. 131. 

Aeneas addressing himself to Evander, says, 

" Sed mea me virtus, et sancta oracula Divum, 
" Cognatique patres, tua terris didita fama, 
" Conjunxere tibi, et fatis egere volentem." 

Poetical heroes are commonly great braggers. Aeneas says, 
in another place ; 

" Disce puer virtutem ex me ." 

But I cannot see why he should talk eo here. If I had the 
authority of any books, I should choose to transpose two half 
lines, and correct the place thus ; 

" Sed tua me virtus, tua terris diditafarna, 
" Cognatique patres, et sancta oracula Vivu?n, 
" Conjunxere tibi." 

Aen. VIII. 630. 

" Fecerat et viridi foetum Mavortis in autro 

" Procubuisse lupam : geminos huic ubera circum 

" Ludere pendentis pueros et lambere matrem 

" lmpavidos: illam tereti cervice refiexam 

" Mulcere alternos, et corpora fingere lingua." 

Is not " Mulcere alternos" too bold an expression, since motion 
cannot be represented in a picture 1 I dare not condemn it. 
Virgil here has borrowed half a verse from Cicero, De Nat. 
Deor. ii. 42. 

" Obstipum caput et tereti cervice reflexum" 

That was robbing the hospital. 

AfiN. XI. 705. 

" Quid tam egregium si foemina forti 

" Fidis equo ? dimitte fugam, et te cominus aequo 
" Mecum crede solo, pugnaeque accinge pedestri: 
" Jam nosces, ventosa ferat cui gloria laudem." 


Servius says that the true reading is " fraudem. 1 ' He says, 
" Haec est vera et antiqua lectio, ut fraudem, non laudem 
" legas ; ut, si fraudem legeris, sit sensus : Pedes congredere ; 
" jam cognosces cui inanis jactantia afferat poenam: nam/raw- 

" dem, veteres poenam vocabant. Si autem laudem lege- 

" rimus, erit census : agnosces cui inanis gloria afferat laudem. 
" Ventosa autem gloria est, quam Graeci xzvoSofyuv vocant." 
Servius, you see, at first roundly asserts that " fraudem" is the 
true reading ; and then he endeavours to explain tlie other 
reading, — " ventosa ferat cui gloria laudem," but he makes 
strange work of it. Pierius says ; " Romanus codex fraudem 
" habet ; quum tamen plerique alii veteres laudem legant. 
" Servius a Romano codice stat, qui fraudem veram esse lec- 
" tionem putat ; cuique ita si legendum, quasdam affert ra- 
" tiones. ContraTi. Donatus laudem agnoscit, hac periphrasi: 
" Experiundo cognosces quis debeat jure meritoque' laudari. 
" Utra potior sit sententia, quum non veteres tantum codices, 
" verum et opinatissimi Grammatici diversa tradant, aliorum 
" arbitrio judicandum reliqui. Est etiam in Mediceo feret." 

I shall foilow Pierius, in not determining which of these 
two readings should be preferred. If the true reading be 
" laudem," I think " ventosa 1 ' must be a vocative case. " Quit 
" your horse," says Aunus to Camilla, " and fight with me on 
" foot ;" 

" Jam nosces, ventosa, ferat cui gloria laudem," 

or, " feret. 1, 

" You that are so vain and proud, and think that no body is 
" equal to you, you shall then see whose the victory shall be." 

Aen. XI. 405. 

" Amnis et Hadriacas retro fugit Aufidus undas." 

Tanaquil Faber, in his Epistles, puts Appulus in the room 
of Aufidus. He did not give himself time to consider, that 
nothing is more common, both in verse and prose, than " amnis 
*' Tiberinus, Nilus amnis, Indus flumen," fyc. 


I have received a letter from " Lincolniensis, 11 relating to my 
observations on Virgil. I am glad to find that many of those 
observations have his approbation : I wish I better deserved 
the favourable opinion he is pleased to have of me, and I 


retum him many thanks for his kind wishes, and for the obliging 
liberty he has taken to dissent irom me in some things, and to 
tell me wherein he thinks me mistaken. 

He cannot agree with what I say, p. 277 ; of Virgil's being 
as little corrupted as any of the Latin poets. He is of opinion 
that the Aeneis is greatly corrupted, and wants a new edition 
as much as any Latin poem. What does he think then of 
Manilius and Statius, to mention no more, who are beyond all 
comparison more corrupted than Virgil ? I agree with him, 
that a better edition of this poet might be published than has 
yet appeared, and I hope he has a design of obliging the world 
in that way. 

Pag. 278. Georg. IV. 516. 

He reads, 

" Nulla Venus, nulli illi animum flexere Hymenaei. ,, 

I desire he would consider whether this correction does not 
make the verse too harsh, and destroy its harmony. In a 
melaneholy subject verses should flow easy, as 

*' Illum etiam lauri, etiam flevcro myricae : 
" Pinifer illum etiam sola sub rupe jacentem 
" Maenalus, et gelidi fleverunt saxa Lycaei." 

Ecl. x. 13. 
Pag. 279. Aen. I. 271. 

He thinks the words which I have put in a parenthesis, are 
not the words of Jupiter to Venus, but of the poet to his reader. 
I cannot agree with him. But, if they are the poefs words, so 
much the worse. What occasion had he to break into Jupiter's 
speech, to tell us that Ascanius was once called Ilus, and after- 
wards Iulus ? It was, indeed, necessary for Virgil to take 
notice that Ascanius was also called Iulus, and to mention it, 
before he paid his compliment to the Julian Family, ver. 292. 

" Julius a magno demissum nomen lulo" 

But I think he might have brought it in better. 

Pag. 278. Georg. III. 432. 
He says, 
" You translate ' exterritus aestu,' ' frightened at the heat,' 
" and read ' exercitus," 1 from the Colotian MS. whose various 
" lections I have observed to be generally glosses. ' Exterritus' 
" seems to me to be the true reading, sK<n\<zyzU , stung or en- 
" raged: as a little before — 

" oestro exterrita silvis 

" Diffugiunt armenta." 


I am inclined to think, as this gentleman does, that"exter- 
ritus" is the true reading. Virgil may, perhaps, use " exterri- 
tus" for " turbatus," " agitatus," " vexatus," Aen. iv. 450, 
" fatis exterrita Dido." Where Servius says, " exterrita," 
" praecipitata," " turbata." My friend, Mr. Markland, alters 
this place, and reads " fatis exercita." See his reasons in his 
Epist. Crit. p. 117. Upon the whole, I think this place should 
not be altered without better authority than that of one MS., 
and I thank this gentleman for his observation upon it. 

He is of opinion that this place should be thus read and 
distinguished ; 

■ " asperque siti atque exterritus aestu, 

" (Ne mihi tum molles sub dio carpere somnos, 
" Neu dorso nemoris libeat jacuisse per herbas; 
" Cum positis novus exuviis, nitidusque juventa 
" Volvitur, aut catulos tectis aut ova relinquens) 
" Arduus ad solem linguis micat ore trisulcis." 

Instead of " solem, et linguis." 

But there is another place in Virgil, which makes against 
his correction and distinction. It is this, 

" Qualis ubi in lucem coluber mala gramina pastus, 
" Frigida sub terra tumidum quem bruma tegebat, 
" Nunc positis novus exuviis nitidusque juventa, 
" Lubrica convolvit sublato pectore terga 
" Arduus ad solem, et linguis micat ore trisulcis." 

Aen. 11.471. 

Observations communicated bi/ an eminent Hand, 

(Marked with the letter D.) 

Virgil. Georg. III. 37. 

" Invidia infelix Furias amnemque severum 
" Cocyti metuet, tortosque Ixionis ANGUES, 
" Immanemque rotam, et non exsuperabile Saxum. 1 ' 

Now, I say, no mythologer, poet, or scholiast, ever mentions 
" cmgues"" as part of Ixion's punishment ; all they say is, that 
he was fastened to a wheel which was perpetually in motion. 
Thus, for example, Pindar, Pyth. II. 2, 41. 

" 'I|i'ova tpxvrl rtxvrix, 

« BgoTo«- xiysiv, ev nTEPOENTI TPOXXII 

" Tlsi)/Ta KvhivS&iJ.evov.''' 1 '—- — 

See also V. 72. 


Euripides Phoeniss. 1191, 

" Tls xvxXwfA 'Hjtovoy 

" Ex/oott\" 

Apollonius Rhodius III. 62. 

" Avo~6[jLciios XAAKE.QN 'I2;/ov« vstoOt o'so'ptwv. ,, 

Here his Scholiast, the most learned and the oldest of that sort 
of writers, has, " Ss weri&as TETPAKNHMON rpo X ov, Je Seo- 
u - (Jtivsds avrov rifjuoQEirou 1 .^ Bythe way, let it be observed, that 
Virgil is very much obliged to this author, and frequently 
imitates him. 

Propertius IV. 11,23. 

" Sisyphe mole vaces, taceant Ixionis orbes.'' 1 

Him, Ovid, Met. X. 42, evidently follows. 

" Nec Tantalus undam 
" Captavit refugam, stupuitque Ixionis orbis." 

Prop. 1.9. 

" Et magis infernae vincula nosse rotac^ 

Seneca Hippol. 1235. 

" Et tu mei requiesce Pirithoi pater. 
" Haec incitatis membra turbinibus ferat 
" Nusquam resistens orbe revoluto rota^ 

Severus Aetn. 81. 

■ ■ " Minos, tuaque iEace in umbris 

" Jura canunt, idemque rotant Ixionis orbem? 

Tibullus, I. iii. 73. 

" Illic Junonem tentare Ixionis ausi 
" Versantur celeri noxia membra rota.^ 

Ov. Met. IV. 456. 

" Volvitur Ixion, et se sequiturque fugitque." 

Diodorus IV. p. 272. " els rqoyov Ev£s9r,vat, xxl Tckcvrr\o-avra tyjv 
" r^ucnav ej^siv aleuviov. 

See also Lucian, who speaks to the same purpose, Deorum 
Dial. 197. 

Hyginus, cap. 62. " Ixionem ad inferos in rota constrinxit, 
" quae ibi adhuc dicitur verti." 

Auctor apud Suidam, p. 120. " 6 Zzvs xdka^et avrbv rspyjj 
" AIATEIN.QN dd $cooy,ivcp xal dvaKV/Xov^ivu?'' From this 


consentient testimony of the aneienls, I prefer the reading of 
the Roman eodex to fifty other MSS. and as many editors: 

" Tortosque Ixionis orbes.'''' 

Pierius noted, but durst not admit it into the text, as imagining 
" orbis'' , and " rota" denoted the same thing ; whereas, the 
former evidently signifies " volutus.' 1 Nay, even supposing his 
objection to be true, would not Virgil himself support the 
word he struck out. Georg. IV. 484. 

" Atque Ixionii vento rota constitit orbis ?" 

In short, the only argument that can be brought for the former 
reading is, that Virgil, Aen. VI. has, 

" Continuo sontes ultrix accincta flagello 
" Tissiphone quatit insultans, torvosque sinistra 
" Intentans angues." 

Or rather " tortosque." And a little further, speaking of 
Ixion, Pirithous, and the Lapithae, adds, 

-" Lucent genialibus altis 

" Aurea fulcra toris, epulaeque ante ora paratae — 

" Furiarum maxima juxta 

" Adcubat, et manibus prohibet contingere mensas, 
" ~E i xsuvg\tque facem attollens, atque intonat ore.'" 

But in the first of these places Ixion is not mentioned, nor 
" angues" in the second. 

I must do Mr. Markland the justice to own, that when I 
communicated this emendation to him, I found he had come 
very near the truth without the help of any MS. 

" Tortosque Ixionis axes." 
And thus we have got rid of a blunder of 1500 years standing. 

Aen. IV. 501. 
" Nec tantos mente furores 

" Concipit." 

Pag. 282 — I alterthis place, and read " Concipere," which 
conjecture I confirm t>y Aen. IV. 474; to which may be added 
Ovid. Met. II. 640. 

" Ergo ubi fatidicos concepit mente furores." 


Butthere is a place in Ovid which seems to makeagainst me, 
Met. X. 402. 

" Myrrha, patre audito, suspiria duxit ab imo 

" Pectore, nec nutrix etiamnum concipit ullum 

" Mente nefas ; aliquem que tamen praesentit amorem." 

Here "nefas mente concipit," is very like 

" nec tantos mente furores 

" Concipit." 

Georg. IT. 392. 
He says of Bacchus, 

" Et quocunque Deus circum caput egit honestum." 

The word "honestus"here, and in many other places, signi- 
fies " beautiful,"'' " graceful." Dryden seems to use the word 
" honest" in the same manner, but unsuccessfully, I think; for 
it conveys a low idea ; 

" So Bacchus through the conquered Indies rode, 
" And beasts in gambols frisked before their honest God." 

Palamon and Arcite. B. III. 

But perhaps Dryden might design to use the word "honest" 
in a low and ludicrous way. If he did, he was injudicious in 
doing so. 

Georg. IV. 405. 

" Verum ubi correptum manibus vinclisque tenebis." 

Pag. 278 — I propose — "manicis." So in Ov. we have "la- 
queis vincloque." 

" Ignaram laqueis vincloque innecte tenaci." 

Met. XI. 252, where a story is told just like this in Virgil. 

Aex. I. 604. 

" Praemia digna ferant." 

Pag. 279 — I offered as a conjecture'" ferent." Statius seems to 
favour my conjecture, Theb. VIII. 377, where he seems to 
imitate Virffil, 

Non ego vos stimulare parem,- 

" Nec laudare satis, dignasque rependere grates 
" Sufficiam. Referent superi" 


Remarks from (D.) inconfirmation of someformer. 

Georg. III. 37. 

Tortosque Ixionis orbes." pag. 287. 

1. It is the Author's expression. Aen. XII. 

" Haud minus Aeneas tortos legit obvius orbes." 

2. Add to the testimony of Euripides, Idem Herc. Fur. 1297. 

1 " TOV a.Qixa.TYikw.TYW 

" I&V, EN AE2MOI2IN hty^ao^lf 

3. I have a suspicion the passage has been altered by a monk 
who had read (as many of them had) in Seneca's Thyest. 96, the 
words of Tantalus to Megaera: 

" Quid ora terres verbere, et tortos ferox 
" Minaris a?igues." 


Aen. I. 453. 
-" Foribus cardo stridebat ahenis." 

I believe that Virgil wrote "ahenus;" for Servius's note on 
the place is this: " ad sua retulit tempora Virgilius: cautum 
enim fuerat post proditum a Tarpeia virgine Capitolium, ut 
aerei cardines fierent, quorum stridor possit aperta ostia omnibus 
indicare :" In the " Ciris," verse 222, we have 

" sonitum nam fecerat illi 

" Marmoreo aeratus stridensin limine cardo." 

Which passage confirms the reading, "ahenus." 

Aen. II. 121. 

"ui fata parent, quem possat Ap ollo." 

The commentators take "fata" here for the nominative case, 
and suppose " mortem" to be understood after the verb " parent ;" 
but this is a way of expressing himself which Virgil is Uot ac- 
customed to follow : perhaps he wrote, 

" cui fata paret, quem poscat Apollo," 

where the construction is, " cui Apollo paret fata;" i. e. " mor- 
tem ;" for that is the known sense of "fata" sometimes, as in 
thePoemadLiviam, verse357, " fata manent omnes." Servius's 
Commentary on the place, "cui responsa praeparent mortem," 


will suit as well the reading which I propose, as that which the 
Editors follow : or rather it seems to favour mine. 

Aex. IV. 256. 
" Haud aliter terras inter caelumque volabat ; 
" Litus arenosum Libyae ventosque secabat 
" Materno veniens ab avo Cyllenia proles." 

The learned have generally thought this place corrupted ; 
for what is "secare litus?" Dr. Bentley therefore proposes 
that we should read, 

" Litus arenosum Libyae ventosque legabat" 

because Virgil in another place says, 

" Litoraque Epiri legimus ;" 

But then what is " legere ventos?" It is observable that the 
Paris,the Medicean, and some other MSS., place the third verse 
before the second ; 

" Haud aliter terras inter caelumque volabat, 

" Materno veniens abavo Cyllenia proles 

" Litus arenosum Libyae, ventosque secabat." 

According to this order of the verses, the word " litus" may be 
the accusative case, governed of " veniens," though the prepo- 
sition "ad 1 '' be not expressed, as Aen. I. 2. — " Lavinaque venit 
Litora." II. 742. — " Sedemque sacratam Venimus." 

But without changing the order of the verses, this passage 
may be set to rights; for Pierius testifies that in the greatest 
part of the MSS. he found " Litus arenosum ac Libyae," and 
in some "et" instead of "ac:" but the Trin. MSS. has " Litus 
arenosum ad Libyae ;" and this perhaps is the true reading; for 
it is not unusual with this author to throw the preposition out 
of its natural place, as in Aen. III. 58. "Delectos populi ad 
proceres." And in Georg. II. 506. 

" Sarrano in dormiat ostro." 

Commwiicated from (R.) 

Aen. IV. 256. 

, " Haud aliter terras," &c. 

In the former remarks upon this passage, I find that I trusted 
too much to my memory, and thereby did a great injustice to 


Dr. Bentley's correction. In his learned notes upon Horace, 
Carm. I. xxxiv. 5. he proposed to correct this place of Virgil, 
thus : 

" Haud aliter, terras inter coelumque, legebat 
" Litus arenosum Libyae, ventosque secabat, &c." 

The conjecture is a very ingenious one, and well supported; it 
wants nothing but the authority of MSS. or old Commentators 
to ensure it. But after a review of his and my own attempts to 
amend this passage, I am almost inclined to think that the common 
reading may be justified, and that "volabat litus Libvae" may 
stand for, " Volabat ad litus Libyae," by an ellipsis of \he prae- 
positk n ; for when the verb expresses motion, the substantive, 
which signifies the place to which that motion is directed, is fre- 
quently put in the accusative case, without a praeposition ; thus 
we read in Virgil, in addition to the instances before given, 
" devenere loc.os,'' , "haec limina tendere adegit," "fines ventu- 
rum Ausonios," " Libycas averteret oras." 

Now I am upon Virgil again, I would offer one more emenda- 
tion of that author. 

Georg. I. 360. 

" Jam sibi tam curvis male temperat unda carinis." 

In the Roman MS. Pieriusfound 

" Jam sibi tum A curvis," &c. 

And he says that Servius seems to acknowledge this readino- ; 
but Servius's copy rather ran thus : 

" Jam sibi tum et curvis male temperat unda carinis." 

For his comment is this ; " Sibi non pascit, sed crescit in per- 
niciem suam (nam in carinam scindenda consurgit.) Et navigan- 
tium perniciem. Temperat autem absolute posuit : nam certe 
subauditur, male temperat seipsam sibi." 

The common reading is not Latin, I think, and according to 
Servius's comment, A can have no place here, but a copulative 
is necessary between " sibi" and "carinis." 


An alteration of the following passage of Virgil has already 
been mentioned : 

" Invidia infelix furias, amnemque severum 
" Cocyti metuet, tortosq: lxionis ANGUES, 
' Immanemque rotam, et non exsuperabile saxum." 



Now because no mythologer, poet, or scholiast, or other 
writer, mentioned snakes as part of Ixior/s punishment, but 
only a moving wheel ; the author made no doubt but " orbes" 
ought to be restored from the Roman codex, as preferable to 

" tortosq: Ixionis orbes, 

" Immanemque rotam." 

To this some objections have been made, which I now propose 
to consider. 

" It is a rule," saith the Gentleman, " when MSS. differ, to 
" prefer a recondite and less usual reading to a more obvious 
" one. And this rule must then be allowed very good, when 
" a large number of MSS. are on the side of the former, against 
" one and no more." 

I answer, that to lay this restraint upon the rule is to beg 
the question. For the point to be made out by him is, that 50 
MSS. are always, or.generally, at least in the case before us, 
better than one ; which he attempts, bylaying down a rule that 
"supposes" them to be so ; and by this engine or critical mill 
destroys at once the finest emendations that ever were made. 
The incomparable Gronovius, in his noteson Seneca's tragedies, 
prefers the reading of one codex to forty, almost every where ; 
and for unanswerable reasons. The present texts of Tertullian, 
Sallust, Herodotus, Florus, and Plautus, depend chiefly on 
single MSS. Wedon^t find the restorers of these books telling 
noses while they introduce new readings ; they all say, " est 
turba semper argumentum pessimi." The truth is, a great 
many particulars are to be considered in things of this nature, 
besides antiquity and number, which need not here be mentioned. 
I make, therefore, no scruple of setting aside a Canon which 
never was admitted, which was made only to serve a turn, and 
tends to make this branch of learning altogether mechanical. 

The Gentleman alleges Virgil here intended two "distinct" 
punishments, or two distinct "parts" of the same torture ; and 
that this appears from the " shortness" of the narration. But 
this again unfortunately is the question. We want to know 
whether the Poet intended to express " one" punishment, or 
more ; and it lies on the Gentleman to prove the latter. Well : 
it appears from the "shortness" of the narration. I should 
rather imagine, that in so short a narration Virgil should men- 
tion but "one" torment, though there had been "really two." 
Besides, in a much "shorter" passage he expresses a "single" 
punishment in just as many words: 

" Atq : Ixionii vento rota constitit orbis." 
And it will appear, by the authorities hereafter to be pro- 
duced, that no writer whatever speaks either of two punish- 


ments of Ixion, or of two parts of the same punishment, 
" Servius" only excepted : who, in all probability, has been here 
interpolated, and corrected bv the greater number of MSS. 
Besides, supposing Bnakes used for cords and binding a criminal 
to the wheel ; (wnich isutterly unsupported by Mythology and 
poetical language) yet what writers, before this said Gentleman 
and partners, wereever yet so weak as to make them "parts" of 
the puuishment ? 

He proceeds, though "orbis" be "volutus," and " rota" the 
" machiua" itself, yet making use but of one and the same pu- 
nishment, and the hendiadis and tautology nevertheless subsist- 
ing, we cannot in so short a narration admit them both." 

Here I remark, in thefirst place, that he does not so much as 
spell his preteuded figure right, which ought to be written 
" hendiadys," or rather h lix luo, h lix cWv. Nor secondly, 
which is much worse, does he understand the nature of it ; but 
perpetually confounds it with what is certainly no figure at all, 
" tautology:" whereas every schoolboy knows, thatin this form 
of speech, used often by Orators and Historians, as well as 
Poets, two substantives are only put instead of asubstantiveand 
an adjective, as " pateris" and "auro" for "pateris aureis." In 
the place then before us, there is nothing either like "para- 
phrase' 1 or "tautology." And to call them the same as the 
Gentleman does, is contrary to all rhetoric. This cutsthevery 
sinews of his objection, and therefore I dismiss it. 

Again he urges, " The gentleman might spare the pomp of 
" sixteen testimonies (and yet ha very formally adds a seven- 
" teenth) to prove what every one would have granted him, — 
" that Ixion was fastened to a wheel, which was perpetually in 
" motion." 

I reply : The author of the emendation had two distinct 
views in producing so many vouchers. The first was to shew that 
" snakes" were " never" mentioned in Ixion'spunishment. The 
second was to make it highly probable that as Virgil followed 
the Greek Poets, so the Latin Poets imitated him in this very 
passage. Foreseeing this stale and trifling objection, he sup- 
pressed (for which he was to blame) a great part of his evidence, 
which shall now be added. Soph. Philoct. 697. 

AoyiJ //.sv e^rfKOua , %<nc/JTl% 0' ou (J.zXx 
Tov Tickirot.v Xsxt^wv 

U6rz rov A»w, 1^'ova KAT' AMITTKA 
JEXa/3' 6 <irayx.parvis K^ov». 

Eurip. Herc. Fur. 1297. 

xzl t v ov APMATHAATHN 
'l%w ev AE2MOI2IN btvayuttscuw' 

x 2 


And in " Plutarch" de audiendis poetis, 'Tlsfr^ 5 Ef§i7r/oV,r 
Ejgreni Xiysrcti Trgbs rovs rov I%iovoc Xo&ogtivrzs us otveftri Ka) pua§ov, otJ 
/laevtoj npovzpov xvrov \v. rr t s SxTjv^y ££737270^ r/ ra> rpoyjh 7r%oo-ri\waxi, 
" quam rotae adfigerem." Every body knows that Virgil 
follows Pindar, Apollonius, Euripides, and Sophocles, fre- 
quently ; and that none of the Latin Poets ever recede from 
known mythology ; and therefore it is highly probable that 
Virgil left " orbes," and not " angues." It is also plain that 
Virgil was a text to the succeeding Poets, as the ancients were 
to him. They all make use of his figures, diction, and num- 
bers, and I think some of them allude to the place in dispute. 
Propertius III. iii. 64. 

" Num rota, num scopuli, num sitis inter aquasr" 

Ovidii Ibis 176. 

" Quiq : agitur rapidae vinctus ab orbe rotae." 

Met. IX. 123. 

" at orbes 

" Concubitus vetitos poteram inhibere paterni." 

They are the words of Hercules to Nessus, the son of Ixion. 
Seneca Herc. Fur. 750. 

" Rapitur volucri tortus Ixion rota." 

Thyest. I. 1. 

" Sisyphi numquid lapis 

" Gestandus humeris lubricus nostris venit ? 
" Aut membra celeri differens cursu rota ? 
" Aut poena Tityi?" 

Med. 744. 

" Rota resistat membra torquens, tangat Ixion humum." 

And 1011: 

" Membra quis praebet rotaeT 

MS. Flor. queritur. Heinsius reads : 

" Membra quis teritur rota." 

Herc. Oet. 945 : 

" Merui manus praebere iurbinibus tuis, 

" Quaecunque regem Thessalum torques rota." 

Again 1068 : 

" Haesit non stabilis rota 
" Victo languida turbine." 


The Author of Octav. 622 : 

" Tantall vincat sitim 


" Ixionisque membra rapientem rotam." 

Agamemn. 15 : 

" Ubi ille celeri corpus evinctus rotae 
" In se refertur." 

They who are versed in Seneca know that his diction is very 
much Virgilian ; and that he rarely loses sight of his great 
pattern for a page together, even in his prose writings. Epist. 
XXIV. " Nec Ixionem rota volvi, nec saxum humero Sisyphi 
trudi," etc. 

Apocol. : 

" Aliquando Ixionis miseri rotam sufflaminandam." 

Statius, who parodies Virgil more than even Seneca himself, 
Theb. VIII. 51 : 

" Cur autem avidis Ixiona frango 

" Vorticibus." 
Claudian Rapt. P. II. 335: 

" Non rota suspensum praeceps Ixiona torquet" 

And (which by the wav shows the skill of the learned Mr. 
Markland) in Ruf. II. 508: 

" Dubio tibi pendula rupes 

" Immineat lapsu ; volucer te torqueat CLads."" 

Josephus Iscanus, a writer of the year 1220, alludes to this 
very place. IV. 204 : 

" Non labile saxum, 

" Non axis torquens, non mendax vicerit unda." 

And VI. 535, alluding to Virgil's, 

" Radiisque rotarum destricti pendent," 

" tibi Tantalus undas, 

" Ixion radios, saxum remeabile reddat 
" Sisyphus." 

Boetius, in the following Glyconics, III. 10 : 

" Non Ixionium caput 
f* Velox praecipitat rota." 



Fulgentlus, Mythol, II. 17: " Qui quidem Ixion parvo tem- 
" pore celere regnum adeptus, dehinc regno expulsus est. 
" Unde et eum ad ROTAM damnatum dicunt, quod omnis 
" rotae vertigo, quae superiora habet, modo dejiciat." 

Whether these and the above testimonies favour " orbes" or 
" angues ;" and whether they hint at " two punishments," or 
two " parts of the same" punishment, let the reader judge. As 
for Virgil, he seems to have had these words of " Cicero" in 
Arataeis in his eye : 

" Ut nemo cui sancta manu doctissima Pallas 
" Tam tornare caute contortcs possiet orbes, 
" Quam sunt in coelo divino numine flexi." 

Dio. Orat. IV. p. 79. 'AtpoptojSro dvrov ty) tS ISiovor y^xKsTrrt 
xxl frxlco <I>OPAi re kxl xvdy» V , TPOXOT Ttvos p/i^- (1. TYMH») 
xvkKov KINOTMENOT re x.a.1 $z%o^ivov. Here are four words 
used to express motion, but nothing that indicates a double 
punishment. The same may be observed in Seneca : 

" Haec incitatis membra tztrbinihus ferat 

" Nusquam resistens orbe revoluto rota.'" 

The last words, too, allude to the verse in question, and shew 
he read, 

"Tortosq: Ixionis orbes." 

Michael Apostolius. y.xl ofyiaQels o ILsvs y.o'k'l^i xvtw ovtojs 
TPOXXlt Sizteivxs avTov, zTioWrfcv AEI OEPE20AI rov Tpo^ov, 


TXVTTiV TYiV TifJ.apixv. 

See also Nazianzen 2. Invect. in Julian. 

But I must follow the Gentleman, who at last condescends to 
suppose " angues" to be a mistake. " Supposing it is such," 
says he, " yet the Roman codex delivered ws from it, before he 
did." _ 

Which of us, I pray ? Did it deliver Germanus Valens, 
Guellius, Fabricius, De la Cerda, Heinsius, Ruaeus ? Delivered 
us just as the Sylva of various readings in Mill's Testament has 
dehvered us from " Euroclydon." Name any critic, from 
Scaliger to Dr. Bentley, that ever declared his approbation of 
the Codex Romanus here, or offered the least reason for its re- 
ception. " Yes," says he, " Pierius long ago said just as much 
for its reception as he has done." Howso? Why, because 
it does not appear that he preferred either of the readings. 
They are his own words. The author of the emendation urges, 
what nobody urged before, viz., that " angues" is contrary to 
all mythology, antient and modern, Greek and Latin : and 
further, that many writers, who evidently allude to this place 


in Virgil, read " orbes," and none of them " augues." Last 
of all, that " orbes' 1 is most agreeable to the phrase or diction 
of the Poet ; and therefore Pierius, who preferred neither 
reading, nor liit upon any of tlie argumonts already mentioned, 
said nevertheless just as much as the author of the emendation. 
In short. had Pierius considered that the figure ev Sia ovo mado 
by " orbes" was more beautiful, more in VirgiPs manner than 
" angues," 1 '' he would have preferred it for the very reason he 
seenis to reject it. 

To proceed. — The Gentleman insinuates, " that Mythologers 
" vary much in circumstances, and therefore the silence of so 
" many signifies little or nothing." 

But it is the silence of " those" Mythologers, whom Virgil 
" certainly" followed. Nor do we argue entirely from silence, 
but from the harmony and consentient testimony of menof diffe- 
rent ages and professions ; from the " allusions" made by subse- 
quent writers to this very place : wriiters to whom Virgil's text 
was sacred. Let us now see what difference there is, and what 
is the reason of it. 

Now I affirm there is no difference in the " original" writers, 
or those prior to Virgil. Philostratus, in the life of Apollonius, 
about the year ccvi., has indeed these words, VII. 12. <7ioXh& 


y.vx(J.Tt1oiro. And VI. 40. 'AXX* sxsTvos ptsv Tpoyjb six.xg(j.svos, 
AP OTPANOT xd/AVETau, Here is a difference as to the 
" place" only of Ixions punishment, and no reason being given 
by his notes, I observe that oY xsops is not taken from 
any ancient Mythologer, but from later Astronomers, who (as 
the Scholiast on Aratus informs us) usually called the " Corona 
Australis" Ixion's wheel. Therefore the passage of Philo- 
stratus is not all to the Gentleman's purpose. Again : 

In the Scholiast, on " Lucian" Dialog. Deor. p. 197., we have 
not so much a variation as an addition. 'TITOnTEPnj rpoyja 
M*%s rov l%ov* dtptxs (psfso-Qu AIA AEPOS MA2TIZOME- 

NON, xxl XsyovTx, Xpri Ti/j,xv tovs svsqysTas. Mr. Le Clerc on 
the place, refers us to that trifler, Tzetzes, whose words are, 

Lr\S T0X(X,YIS TXVTfiS V svsy.x HlCOV SV TW aoV) 

Ev SIAEPfti STPEBAOTMENOS rpey^ voivrikxTitrn. 

Chil. IX. But all this (excepting the notion expressed by the 
word s-/35/3x«/hcvoj) is taken from the Scholiast upon Homer, II. A. 
Msra os Xxvxtov eXa/3s $ixxs Ttxp xuth o Ze^s, TtoiriGas auTOv sv 
toXs xxrxyjioviois $pi$so-Qxi (j,sto. noXljs fiixs sm TPOXOT SIAE- 
POT. As to Tzetzes, he that will be at the trouble of reading 
a few lines further, will find he does not pretend to give the 
Mythology of Ixion, but to interpret the Fable. I say nothing 
to the words %pr, thj.xv, &c, because they are taken from 


Pindar, or else from the Schol. on the Odyssea: rp6)/$pus itoi-haccs 
TnOnTEPOTS *£0r ; cr£ tov \'£}ovoc itpos tccs tojv Tpoy^uv n.vriuAdccs , 


dfxsij3£o-Qxi vpoo-yxzv. Upon the whole matter, when there is any 
seeming difference as to circumstance in fable, it is chiefly found 
in such allegorical authors as Heraclides Ponticus, or in modern 
philosophers, who endeavour to explain it away, in order to 
avoid the sarcasms of Christian apologists. It is true, Nonnus, 
a poet of the year ccccx., seems to place Tantalus on a wheel 
as well as Ixion. Lib. XXXV. 

' KpEcc W ccppccyEEOGiv aXvxTOTtEoriGi 7t£^r\ooj y 
Kai /xiv dvccXQriToioiv oXov 7t~kriyr]o'.v Ifxccooco, 
Els rpyov ATTOKTAI2TON, o/Ao&go/xos hos a.-kr]T*s 

TccVTCcXoS 'fepoQoiTOS , r\ \c\iOJV tAETClVCCSriS. 

Jupiter is here introduced as threatening the God of War. 
The second verse must not be understood as relating to Ixion's 
punishment, but asan " additional" fiction of the Poet himself, 
and the last alludes to the " corona austrina."" See Manilius 
and Hyginus. As to what this inaeenrate writer says of Tan- 
talus, it is unsupported by antiquity. 

Lastly, the Gentleman's explication of " tortos Ixionis 
" angues," is what the Latin will not bear ; viz., that " the 
" ligatures were serpentine," as " Natalis Comes," from an in- 
terpolated " Servius," also assures us. It is contrary, both to 
poetical fiction and language, to use snakes for bands, and those 
words in the Poets mean whips or lashes. 

Aen. V. 495. 

" Tertius Eurytion, tuus o clarissime, frater 

" Pandare : qui quondam, jussus confundere foedus, 

" In medios telum torsisti primus Achivos." 

I made this observation p. 283. Minerva persuaded Pandarus 
to do this base action. 

Tw £s tppivas a^qovi TtslQsv. Hom. II. A. 104. 

Which made me fancy that it might be 

" Suasus confundere foedus." 

But " jussus" is better. It became Virgil to favour as much 
as possible the Trojans and their friends: and therefore he says 
" jussus," to excuse the conduct of this hero. 

To this the following objection has been made: " There is no 
" occasion to seek shelter in this artifice ; for jussus is better 
" than suasus, because it is the reading of the MS., and because 


" it is synonymous with suasus ; what the Gods persuade, they, 
" as it were, command, and so of the people ; and aceordingly 
" Caesar joins hortor and jubeo together, Qudd res nulla suc- 
" cesserat, postero die consilium ceperunt ex oppido profugere, 
" hortante et jubente Vercingetorige, de B. G. 7. 25. Thus 
" ksXsvco of the Greeks is properly jubere, but as frequently 
" hortari, suadere, rogare, petereT 

I cannot pretend to give a full answer to the " GentlemanV 
objection, for I am in the case that Simonides was once in : the 
more I consider it, the less I understand it. However, two 
things I see in it. 

1. An apophthegm, " What the gods persuade, they as it 
were command." 

2. An assertion, that " jubere" may signify to " persuade." 

1. The apophthegm has nothing to do here, for Minerva 
came in to Pandarus in disguise, like a man, and a man that 
was but his equal at best, 

" 'H y dv^qi IxiXv) LqdjCJv Ha.T£duai7£^' 0f/,ik0V 

" Azodoxcv ' AvrriMoqi^ri" 

and having laid aside the appearance of a goddess, laid aside 
the authority of one. 

2. The Gentleman has asserted that " jubere" may signify to 
" persuade ;" but any one may see that he has not proved it. 

But suppose " jubere" may signify to " persuade," yet 
" jussus" here in Virgil means " commanded," for the reason 
which I have given. 

Pandarus was persuaded by Minerva, appearing like the son 
of Antenor, to do an infamous action, and he was induced by 
the hopes of being paid for it. 

Virgil leads away his reader from the thoughts of this, and 

" jussus confundere foedus." 

Pandarus shot at Menelaus, and wounded him. This also Virsril 
softens, and says, 

" In medios telum torsisti primus Achivos." 

Aen. II. 214. 

" parva duorum 

" Corpora natorum serpens amplexus uterque 
" Inplicat." 

Servius ; " Inplicat, hoc ad mollitiem infantum corporis 


I observed p. 28 1 , that tliis remark was corrupted, or that it 
did not come from Servius. 

To this a " Gentleman" has said, that Virgil uses " inplicat," 
to denote the pliableness of the infants' bodies, in opposition to 
that of the father, and that there is no need at all to suspect 
the genuineness of a remark so just. 

But as far as I can hitherto learn from Latin writers, the 
word " inplico" denotes no such thing. It means neither more 
nor less than to encompass any thing by twisting and folding 
round it. Serpents are said, a thousand times, " implicare," 
" circumplicare hominem," " arborem," or any thing that they 
twist round, be it soft or hard, pliable or inflexible. 

However, I would not be too forward to condemn this note, 
because if (as I find some judicious and ingenious persons think) 
it be Servius's remark indeed, and a just one too, it will help 
us to explain abundance of passages in ancient authors hitherto 
not understood. For instance, Val. Flacc. IV. 333. 

" Illius excelsum ramis caput, armaque castor 
" Implicat." 

The word " Implicat," here shows the softness of the head of 
Pollux. No wonder then that Amycus broke it, as we learn 
from v. 330. 

<( tenues tamen ire cruores 

" Siderea de fronte vident." 

Ver. 255. 

" Anguis — spiris nemus omne refusis 
" Implicuit." 

The word " Implicuit," shews the softness and pliableness of 
the wood. 

Virgil, Aen. VII. 135. 

frondenti tempora ramo 

" Implicat. 1 
Ibid. 355. 

" ossibus implicat ignem. 11 

The word " Implicat," shews the softness and pliableness of 
Aeneas's head, and Amata^s bones, &c. &c. 

Georg. IV. 415. 
" liquidum ambrosiae diffudit odorem ; 

" Quo totum nati corpus perduxit. 1 

Servius ; " unxit eum quo posset esse videndi numinis capax. 11 
I corrected it " vincendi," or " yinciendi," p. 278. A Gentle- 


man observes " that by videndi is not meant the bare act of 
seeing only, though perhaps that might be one reason of this 
unction. See Serv. ad Eclog. VI. 24. But the coming into 
his presence, which could not be done without difnculty, by 
reason of the stink of the Phocae. 11 

1. It is not very safe to deal in negatives, but I think here I 
may venture to say, that there is not any ancient writer, nor 
anylearned modern, except the Gentleman, whoever told usthat 
" ambrosia" was good for the eyesight. This I take to be 
ground enough for supposing that Servius, who was a scholar, 
would not have given us such an interpretation. 

2. Let us suppose that " ambrosia 1 ' was good to clear a man's 

" ' 0<pg' cu ytvwffJtY) fi/Asv S^eov ri$k xx\ avcJga." 

Yet here the application of it seems to shew, that it was in- 
tended for another purpose ; 

" Totum nati corpus perduxit." 

" She anointed him all over to mend his eye-sight. 11 A 
likely story ! 

3. " Videre," as the Gentleman will have it, signifies more 
than to see. What more shall it signify ? To bear the stink 
of the Phocae ? That, or what he pleases : 

" "/jxigiru skxgtos o"is >5^erai." 

Aen. VIII. 633. 
" Illam tereti cervice refiexam 

" Mulcere alternos et corpora fingere lingua. 11 

I said, Is not " mulcere alternos 1 ' too bold an expression, 
since motion cannot be represented in a picture ? I dare not 
condemn it, p. 2#4. 

On this a Gentleman has observed, 

1. That I am here indebted to Servius, who says, " Non 
quod in pictura erat dicit ; sed id quod intelligimus factum 
fuisse. 11 

2. That "alternus 11 is used by the poets for " ambo," and 
so I may, if I please, take " mulcere alternos 1 ' for " mulcere 
ambos. 11 

3. That it is an idle question ; for in strictness how could 
they be represented as "playing," v. 632, or " moving^as Serv. 
interprets it ; as both " playing and sucking ?" Cod. Answer. 


1. How far I am indebted to Servius, the reader must 

2. If I loved cavilling, I might say that " alternus" is never 
used for " ambo," but " alterni." It is sufficient to say that 
" mulcere alternos," #c, means, " to fondle and lick them by 
turns," that the nature of the thingrequires this interpretation, 
and that if some writers use " alterni" for " ambo," it signifies 
nothing in the case before us. 

3. In a picture things can be represented in an act of motion, 
birds flying, water flowing, children playing, &c, but a change 
ofmotion, I imagine, cannot be described, as, for instance, a 
wolf fondling and licking two children by turns. However, 
I did not condemn it, because poets have given themselves the 
liberty of going beyond the truth hrsuch representatioris, and 
describe pictures, where a change of motion is said to be ex- 
pressed. But commonly that change of motion is but small, 
as the trembling of trees when the wind shakes them, Sfc. 

I believe, if a poet, giving an account of a picture, was to 
insert, " There you might see a man running first to one place 
and then to anothery*' he would not be much admired for say- 
ing so. 

Aen. VIII. 131. 

Aeneas says to Evander: 

" Sed mea me virtus et sancta oracula Diviim, 
" Cognatique patres, tua terris didita fama, 
" Conjunxere tibi, et fatis egere volentem." 

I said, p. 284, " If I had the authority of any books, I 
" should choose to transpose two half lines, and correct the 
" place thus : 

" Sed tua me virtus, tua terris didita fama, 
" Cognatique patres, et sancta oracula 
" Conjunxere tibi, et fatis egere volentem." 

They who disapprove of the conjecture must acknowledge, 
that it is proposed with diffidence enough, and not obtruded 
npon Virgil or the readers. 

I. The words " fatis egere," have a more particular reference 
to tlie words " sancta oracula Divum," than to the rest of what 

('" Auguriis agimur Divum, iii. 5. 

" Sed nos fata deiim vestras exquirere terras 
" Imperiis egere suis, vii. 240.)" 

And, therefore, it seems more proper that " sancta oracula 

ON virgil. 305 

Divum'' should end the seconcl line, as " fatis egere volentem" 
ends the third line. 

II. In defence of " mea me virtus," it may be said that 
poetical heroes are given to bragging, that Aeneas boasts of 
himself upon other occasions, and that it is good sense, and a 
compliment to Evander : " the consciousness of my virtue en- 
" courages me to seek your alliance, and persuades me that 
" I shall obtain it, because men of worth are naturally friends 
" to each other." 

Something may be said on the other hand. It may be said, 
that the places where Aeneas commends himself are not quite 
parallel to the one before us. He says to his son, 

" Disce, puer, virtutem ex me ;" 

where it is more allowable. And he says to a lady whom he 
met in a wood, who proved to be liis mother ; 

" Sum pius Aeneas — fama super aethera notus." 

Addressing himself to an unknown lady, he thought it proper 
to recommend himself to her favour, by adding somewhat in 
his own praise. His calling himself " pius Aeneas," has been 
observed to be no boasting, but rather telling the name he 
went by. May we add, that if there be any indecorum here, 
itis owing to Homer^s " nou /xsv xkioz ougayh Ixei" copied by 
Virgil ? And may I venture to say, that Virgil follows Homer 
sometimes, where" he might as well have let it alone ? as 
Aen. X. 517. Of this let every one judge as he thinks iit. 

It might also be said that Aeneas^s business being " captare 
benevolentiam, 11 the first thing to have been mentioned by him, 
among the motives that brought him to Evander, was the merit 
of that prince. He might have began so without lessening 
himself, and descending from his character : " mea virtus," in 
the first place, and " tua fama," in the last, has the appearance 
of an awkward " varsqoy Trporagov, 11 and " tua me virtus con- 
junxit tibi, 11 seems to be a more decent compliment than " mea. 11 

" Tibi me virtus tua fecit amicum," says the man in Horace, 
who would insinuate himself into the favour of a rich old fel- 
low. Horace, it may be said, is describing a flattering scoun- 
drel. No matter for that; the flatterer pretends not to be 
one, and puts on the air of a man of importance. 

Further. Every one that is acquainted with Virgil and Lu- 
cretius must needs know that Virgil is a great imitator of that 
excellent poet. He might possibly have hacl in his mind this 
verse of Lucretius, 

" Sed tua me virtus tamen, and sperata voluptas 11 

But this I lay no great stress upon. 


The repetition " tua tua," is Virgilian : Aen. VI. 695. 

tua me, genitor, tua tristis imago, 

" Saepius occurrens, haec limina tendere adegit." 

III. But, say some, it is enough to prove this conjecture to 
be wrong, that both Servius and the MSS. are against it. 
Whv so, Gentlemen ? Do you not know learned men are of 
opinion, that Virgil's text is corrupted in some places, even 
where Servius and all the MSS. conspire to defend it ? It is 
not impossible that Virgil's own copy of this unfinished poem 
might be interlined in some places, that some half lines 
might be out of place, and that they who published it might 
give it, in some passages, otherwise than Virgil designed 
it. Thus much is fact, that before the time of Servius, thei*e 
were various readings in Virgil, and doubts concerning the true 
text. We learn from Servius and A. Gellius, that even in that 
iinished work of Virgil, the Georgics, II. 247, some read 
" amaro," and others " amaror." But I have not summed up 
all the evidence on both sides. A Gentleman says, that when I 

«.« mea me virtus, et sancta oracula Divum," 

and transposed the two half lines, I had forgot the two passages 
produced by myself, where " dii" and " mens sibi conscia 
recti" occur jointly, " dii" and " mores." 

Aen. 1.607: 

" Dii tibi et mens sibi conscia recti 

" Proemia digni ferent." 

Aen. IX. 252 : 

" pulcherrima primum 

" Dii moresque dabunt vestri." 

I have an answer for this objection, that will fit it to a hair, 
which is, that my transposition — 

" tua me virtus, tua terris didita fama," 

is confirmed by Virgil himself, who sings thus, 

" sed famam extendere factis 

" Hoc virtutis opus" 

where, luckily for me, " virtus" and " fama" are neighbours. 
After all, I look upon the conjecture which I have been 
reviewing, as a very uncertain one ; or, to speak of it in the 
humblest manner, as only a little more plausible than this 
objection to it. 


Georg. II. 285. 

" Non animum modo uti pascat prospectus inanem;" 

I said before: Perhaps it might be " inanis." A Gentleman 
has made objections to this conjecture. His objections are such 
as I think I could answer ; but I choose to say nothing to them, 
because I agree with him, that this place wants no alteration. 
By " animum inanem," Virgil seems to mean the same thing as 
Georg. III. 

" Caetera quae vacuas tenuissent carmine mentes^ 

Plautus has " aedes aurium vacivas." Pseud. I. v. 54. 

Stat. Theb. X. 228. 

" Vertice sic Pholoes volucrum nutritor equorum, 
" Cui foetura gregem pecoroso vere novavit, 
" Laetatur, cernens hos montis in ardua niti, 
" Hos innare vadis, certare parentibus illos. 
" Tunc vacuo sub corde movet, qui molle domandi 
" Ferre jugum." &£- 


Aen. VI. 95. 

" Tu ne cede malis ; sed contra audentior ito, 
" Quam tua te Fortuna sinet." 

Servius and others : " Esto audentior quam tua te fortuna 
sinet. 11 I rather think we should understand " quam viam." 
Perhaps " sua" may be right, which is in most of the ancient 
MSS., as Pierius says: 


" Hic quibus invisi fratres, dum vita manebat, 
" Pulsatusve parens, et fraus innexa clienti ; fyc. 
" Inclusi poenam exspectantr 
Perhaps "»expendunt." It follows, 

" Ne quaere doceri 
" Quam poenam, aut quae forma viros, fortunave mersit. 
" Saxum ingens volvunt alii," 8?c. 

v. 739. 

" veterumque malorum 

" Supplicia expendunt." 


Aen. X„ 469. 

" expendere poenas." 
Aen. XI. 258. 

" scelerum poenas expendimus."" 
Aen. II. 229. 

" scelus expendisse. v> 

" Exspectant" might come from " Inclusi," which offers the 
idea of a prison, where they were supposed to be confined until 
they were brought out to be punished. 

VII. 427. 

" Haec adeo tibi me, placida cum nociejaceres, 
" Ipsa palam fari omnipotens Saturnia jussit. r> 
Perhaps "jacerem." 

VIII. 9. 

" Mittitur et magni Venulus Diomedis ad urbem, 
" Qui petat auxilium, et Latio consistere Teucros, 
" Advectum Aenean classi, victosque Penates 
" Inferre, et fatis regem se dicere posri, 
" Edoceat, multasque viro se adjungere gentes 
" Da?xlanio, et late Latio increbrescere nomen.' , ■ , 

Perhaps : 

<< multasque viro se adjungere gentes, 

" Dardanium et late Latio increbrescere nomen. v> 






Not wanted in RBSC