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" L. ^ 



THE 



PHARSALIA 



L U C A N 

L 



LITERALLY TRANSLATED INTO ENGLISH PROSF, 
WITH COPIOUS NOTES. 



H. T. RILEY, B.A., 

LATE SCHOLAR OF CLARE HALL, CAMBRIDGE. 



LONDON: 
HENRY G. BOHN, YORK STREET, COVENT GARDEN. 

MDCCCLIII. 



PEEFACE. 



IN the following Translation, the text of Weise has been 
adopted, except ha a few instances, where the readings of 
.Cortius, Weher, or the older Commentators, appeared pre- 
ferable. It is much to be regretted that, notwithstanding 
their labours, the text still remains in a corrupt state. 

The Pharsalia has not been previously translated into 
English prose ; but there have been two poetical versions, 
one by Thomas May, in 1627, the other by Nicholas Kowe. 
The latter is too well known to require comment ; the 
former, though replete with the quaint expressions pe- 
culiar to the early part of the seventeenth century, has the 
merit of adhering closely to the original, and is remark- 
able for its accuracy. 

The present translation has been made on the same 
principle as those of Ovid and Plautus in the CLASSICAL 
LIBRARY ; it is strictly literal, and is intended to be a faith- 
ful reflex, not only of the author's meaning, but, as nearly 
as possible, of his actual modes of expression. 

To enhance the value of the work in an historical point 
of view, the narrative has been illustrated by a compari- 
son With parallel passages in the Commentaries of Csesar, 
and the works of other ancient historians who have 
treated of the wars between Pompey and Csesar. 

H. T. R. 



CONTENTS. 



BOOK I. Page 

The nature of the subject, 1-7. The lamentable character of the 
warfare, 8-32. The Poet addresses Nero, 33-66. The causes of 
the war, 67-97. The rivalry between Pompey and Caesar after the 
death of Crassus, 98-157. The luxury of Rome, 158-182. Caesar 
crosses the Rubicon, and takes possession of Ariminum, 183-230. 
The complaints of the inhabitants of those parts that they are the 
first to feel the effects of every war, 231-260. Curio, being expelled 
from Rome, comes to Caesar's camp, and entreats him to march against 
Rome, 261-291. Caesar's address to his soldiers, 292-351. The 
soldiers wavering, Laelius encourages them, 352-385. They consent 
to march against Rome, 386-391. Caesar advancing against Rome, 
his forces are enumerated, 392-465. The reports at Rome 'on his 
approach. The fear of the people. The Senators and citizens, with 
Pompey, take to flight, 466 522. Prodigies then beheld are re- 
counted, 523-583. Aruns, the Etrurian prophet, is consulted. The 
City is purified. The sacrifices are productive of ill omens. Aruns 
presages evil to the state, 584- 638. Figulus does the same, 639-672. 
A Roman matron prophesies woe to the City, 673 695 1 

BOOK II. 

Reflections on the Prodigies, 1-15. The alarm at Rome described. 
The complaints of the matrons, 16-42. The complaints of the men, 
43-66. A long speech is spoken by an aged man in reference to the 
Civil Wars carried on between Sulla and Marius, 67-233. Brutus 
repairs to Cato at night, and asks his advice, 234-285. Cato answers 
that he shall follow Pompey, and advises Brutus to do the same, 286- 
325. While they are conversing, Marcia appears, whom, formerly 
his own wife, Cato had given to his friend Hortensius, since whose 
death she has sought him again as her husband, 326-349. In the 
presence of Brutus they renew the nuptial vow, 350-391. Pompey 
has in the meantime retired to Campania. The Apennines, with 
their streams, are described, 392-433. Caesar takes possession of 
the whole of Italy. The flight of Libo, Thermus, Sulla, Varus, 
Lentulus, and Scipio, from the cities which they hold, 439-477. 
Domitius Ahenobarbus, by breaking down the bridge, endeavours to 
impede the course of Caesar at Corfinium. Caesar crosses the river, 
and while he is preparing to lay siege to Corfinium, the citizens 
deliver Domitius to him. Caesar gives him his liberty against his 
wish, 478-525. Pompey addresses his troops, and promises to lead 

b 



vi CONTENTS. 

Page 

them to battle, 526-595. He retreats to Brundisium, 596-609. 
The situation of that place is described, 610-627. Pompey sends 
his son to Asia to request the assistance of the eastern Kings. He 
himself prepares to cross over to Epirus, 628-649. Caesar follows 
Pompey, and endeavours to cut him off from the sea, 650-679. 
Pompey leaves Italy, 680-703. Caesar enters Brundisium, 704-736 46 

BOOK III. 

While Pompey is crossing to Greece, the ghost of Julia appears to him 
in a dream, and predicts the devastating nature of the war, 1-35. 
Pompey arrives in Epirus, 36-45. Caesar instructs Curio to procure 
corn in Sicily, 46-70. He then marches to Rome, 76-97. The 
alarm at Rome described. The hostility of the Senate to Caesar. 
Metellus the Tribune resists the spoilers of the public treasury, 98- 
133. Caesar threatens him, 134-140. Cotta advises Metellus to 
yield, 141-152. The Temple is opened, and the treasure is carried 
off, 153-168. In the meantime Pompey collects forces in Greece 
and Asia, which are enumerated, 169-297. Caesar, on his way to 
Spain, repairs to Massilia, which has remained faithful to Pompey, 
298-303. The people of Massilia send deputies to him, deprecating 
civil war, 304-357. Caesar besieges Massilia, 358-374. The works 
are described, 374-398. Caesar commands a sacred grove to be cut 
down, and forces the soldiers, though reluctant, to do so, 399-452. 
Departing for Spain, he entrusts the siege to Trebonius, by whom 
it is continued, 453 496. The Massilians sally forth by night and 
repulse the enemy, 497-508. The attack is now carried on by sea. 
Brutus arrives with his fleet, 509-537. The sea-fight is described, 
538-751. The Massilians are vanquished, and Brutus is victorious, 
752-762 89 

BOOK IV. 

In the meantime Caesar arrives in Spain, where Afranius and Petreius 
are in command of Pompey 's forces, consisting of Romans and 
Spaniards, 1-10. A battle is fought at Ilerda, 11-47. By reason 
of the rains in the spring an inundation ensues, and Caesar's camp is 
overflowed, 48-90. A famine prevails, 91-97. And then a flood, 
98-120. When the waters subside Petreius departs from Ilerda, 
121-147. Caesar comes up with him, and a battle is fought, 148-156. 
Caesar commands the flying enemy to be intercepted, 157-166. Both 
sides pitch their camps. The fellow-citizens recognize each other, and 
interchange courtesies, 167-194. But Petreius puts an end to this 
good feeling, and calls his own men to arms, 195-211. He then 
harangues his troops, 212-235. The warfare is resumed, 236-253. 
The Pompeian troops fly towards Ilerda, 254-263. Caesar shuts 
them out from a supply of water, 264-266. The sufferings of the 
Pompeians are described, 267-336. Afranius sues for peace, 337-362. 
Which Caesar grants to the enemy, 363-401. In the meantime 
Antony, the lieutenant of Caesar, is besieged by the adherents of 



CONTENTS. vii 

Page 

Pompey on the shores of the Adriatic, and his troops are suffering 
from famine, 402-414. He then attempts to escape by sea, 415-432. 
Loose chains are placed by the enemy beneath the waves, which 
intercept the flight of one of Antony's rafts, 433-464. Vulteius, 
the commander of the raft, exhorts his men to slay each other rather 
than fall into the hands of the enemy, 465-520. They obey his 
commands, 521-581. Curio sails for Africa, and landing at the river 
Bagrada, near Utica, is informed by one of the inhabitants of the 
contest which took place near there between Hercules and the giant 
Antaeus, 581-660. Vanis, the Pompeian commander, is routed by 
Curio, 661-714. Curio fights against Juba, but being surrounded by 
an ambuscade, is destroyed with his forces, 715-798. He is apos- 
trophized by the Poet, 799-824 . . .' 126 

BOOK V. 

In the early part of the year the Consuls convene the Senate in Epirus, 
1-14. Lentulus addresses the Senators, and advises them to appoint 
Pompey Commander-in-chief, which is accordingly done, 15-49. The 
Poet praises the monarchs and nations who lent their aid, 50-64. 
Appius goes to consult the oracle at Delphi, which has now long been 
silent, as to the result of the war, 65-70. The oracle is described, 
71-120. The Temple is opened, and Phemonoe, the Priestess, tries 
to dissuade Appius from his enquiries, 121-140. She is forced, how- 
ever, to ascend the oracular tripod, 141-162. And is inspired by 
the prophetic frenzy. The oracle foretells, in ambiguous terms, the 
death of Appius himself before the battle of Pharsalia, in the Island 
of Euboea, 163-197. The oracle is apostrophized by the Poet, 198- 
236. The soldiers of Caesar's party become mutinous, 237-261. 
Their threats and clamours for peace, 262-296. Caesar presents 
himself before them thus complaining, 297-318. He addresses them, 
319 364. The tumult is appeased, 365-373. Caesar sends his army 
to Brundisium, and orders a fleet to be collected there, 374 380. 
He then repairs to Rome, where he is made Dictator and Consul, 
380-384. Evil omens give portentous signs, 384-402. He goes 
thence to Brundisium ; where collecting a fleet, he orders part of his 
troops to embark, although the skies betoken an approaching tempest, 
403-411. He harangues his soldiers, 412 423. The sea is suddenly 
becalmed, and passing over he lands at Palaeste, in Epirus, 424-460. 
He encamps at Dyrrhachium, 461-475. Caesar entreats Antony to 
send over the remaining forces, 476-497. Impatient at his delay, 
he determines to go across, 498 503. He does so in a small boat, 
504-570. Caesar encourages the mariners in a tempest, 571-593. 
Which is described, 594-653. He arrives in Italy, 654-677. He 
returns to Epirus, and his soldiers expostulate with him for leaving 
them, 678-700. Antony passes over with the rest of his troops, 
701-721. Pompey determines to send his wife Cornelia to Lesbos, 
722-739. He apprises her of his intentions, 740-759. Cornelia's 
answer, 760-790. She embarks, 790-801. And sails for Lesbos, 
801-815 . 164 



viii CONTENTS. 



BOOK VI. Page 

Caesar, being unable to bring Pompey to a battle, marches to seize 
Dyrrhachium, 1-14. Pompey intercepts him on his march, 15-18. 
The situation of the city is described, 19-28. Caesar surrounds the 
city and the forces of Pompey with vast outworks, 29-63. Pompey 
sallies forth to interrupt the works, 64-79. A famine and pestilence 
arise in his army, 80-105. The army of Caesar also suffers from 
famine, 106-117. Pompey attempts to break through the outworks, 
118-124. He is at first successful in his attempts, 125 -139. But is 
driven back by Scaeva, 140-144. Whose praises are sung by the 
Poet, 145-148. Scaeva exhorts his comrades, 149-165. While 
bravely fighting, he is pierced by an arrow, 166-227. He requests 
to be carried to the camp of Pompey, 228-235. Deceived by bis 
stratagem, Aulus is slain by him, 235-239. The words of Scaeva, 
240-246. His wounds are described, and his praises descanted 
upon, 247-262. Pompey attacks the outworks nearer to the sea, 
263 278. Caesar prepares to renew the engagement, 278-289. At 
the approach of Pompey, the troops of Caesar are in alarm, 290 299. 
Pompey neglects to follow up his successes, 299-313. Caesar repairs 
to Thessaly, and is followed by Pompey, 314-332. The situation 
of Thessaly is described, 333-412. Both sides pitch their camps, 
the troops anxiously awaiting the event, 413-419. Sextus, the son 
of Pompey, is urged by fear to enquire into the destinies of futurity 
by means of magic arts, 420-434. The Thessalian incantations are 
described, 434 506. Erictho, a Thessalian enchantress, and her rites, 
are described, 507-569. Sextus repairs to her at night, 570-588. 
He addresses her, and requests her to disclose to him the future, 
589-603. She promises him that she will do so, 604-623. A dead 
body is chosen for her to restore to life, and is dragged to her cave, 
624-641. The cave of Erictho is described, 642-653. Commencing 
her incantations, she reproaches the attendants of Sextus, 654-666. 
By her incantations and magic skill she raises the dead body to life, 
667-761. She requests it to disclose the future, 762-774. It 
discloses the woes of Rome, and of the adherents of Pompey in 
particular, 775-820. The body is then burned, and Sextus returns 
to the camp, 820-830 201 

BOOK VII. 

The vision of Pompey the night before the battle of Pharsalia is de- 
scribed, 1-44. His soldiers demand to be led forth to battle, 45-61. 
Cicero's address to Pompey on this occasion, 62-85. Pompey'g 
answer, 85-123. The soldiers prepare for battle, 124-150. Por- 
tentous signs appear, 151-184. Distant nations are made aware of 
the impending catastrophe, 185-213. The army of Pompey is de- 
scribed, 214-234. Caesar's delight on seeing them preparing for 
battle, 235-249. He harangues his soldiers, 250-329. They prepare 
for battle, 330-336. Pompey harangues his army, 337-384. The 
Poet laments the approaching slaughter, 385-459. The soldiers 



CONTENTS. 



hesitate on both sides on recognizing each other, 460-469. Crastinus, 
a soldier in Caesar's army, commences the battle, 470-475. The 
beginning of the battle is described, 476-505. Caesar attacks the 
army of Pompey in flank, and the cavalry is repulsed, 506-544. 
The centre of Pompey's army offers a stronger resistance, 545-550. 
The Poet is averse to describe the scenes of horror there perpetrated, 
551-556. Caesar exhorts his men to deeds of valour, 557-585. It 
is the design of Brutus to slay Caesar, 586-596. Multitudes of the 
Patricians are slain, among whom is Domitius, 597-616. The Poet 
laments the carnage, 617-646. Pompey takes to flight, 647-679. 
The Poet apostrophizes Pompey, 680-711. Pompey comes to Larissa, 
where he is welcomed by the inhabitants, 712-727. Caesar takes 
possession of the enemy's camp, 728-786. The bodies of Pompey's 
troops lie unburied, a prey to birds and wild beasts, 787-846. The 
Poet concludes with imprecations against the scene of such horrors, 
847-872 249 

BOOK VIII. 

Pompey arrives at the sea-shore in his flight, 1-34. He embarks for 
Lesbos to join Cornelia, whose apprehensions are described, 35-49. 
He arrives at Lesbos, 50-71. He consoles his wife, 72-85. Cornelia's 
answer, 86 -105. The people of Mitylene welcome Pompey, 106-127. 
He commends their fidelity, 128-146. He leaves Lesbos, taking 
Cornelia with him, amid the regrets of the inhabitants, 147-158. 
At night he addresses the pilot of the ship and orders him to avoid 
the coasts of Italy and Thessaly, and to leave to fortune the course of 
the ship, 159-201. He despatches Deiotarus to seek aid for his 
cause, 202-243. And then sails past Ephesus, Samos, Rhodes, 
Pamphylia, and Taurus, 244-255. Arriving in Cilicia he addresses 
his companions, and recommends them to take refuge with Phraates, 
the king of Parthia, as he suspects the fidelity of the Egyptians and 
Nnmidians, 256-327. He is opposed by Lentulus, who advises him 
to take refuge with Ptolemy, the king of Egypt, 328-455. He follows 
the advice of Lentulus, and proceeds to Pelusium, 456-466. The 
ministers of Ptolemy are in trepidation, and deliberate what steps to 
take, 467-475. Pothinus urges the King to slay Pompey, 476-535. 
Achillas is commissioned by Ptolemy to do so, 536 538. The Poet 
expresses his grief and indignation, 539-560. Pompey goes on board 
a small boat for the shore, 561-595. He is there murdered in the 
sight of Cornelia by Septimius and Achillas, 596-620. His last 
words, 621-636. The lamentations of Cornelia, 637-662. Septimius 
cuts off his head, and gives it to Achillas, who carries it to Ptolemy, 
663-686. By whose order it is embalmed, 687-691. The Poet 
deplores the fate of Pompey, 692-711. Cordus, an attendant of 
Pompey, burns the body on the shore, and burying the bones, places 
over them a stone with an inscription, 712-793. The Poet again 
laments his fate, and concludes with imprecations against treacherous 
Egypt, 794-872 293 



CONTENTS. 



BOOK IX. Page 

The soul of Fompey, leaving the tomb, soars to the abodes of the 
Blessed, and thence looking down upon the earth inspires the breasts 
of Brutus and Cato, 1-23. Cato, with the remnant of Pompey's 
forces, repairs to Corcyra, 24-35. And thence to Crete and Africa, 
where he meets the fleet of Pompey with Cornelia, 36-50. She, 
having beheld the death of her husband and the funeral pile, has 
been reluctant to leave the shores of Egypt, 51-116. After which 
she has touched at Cyprus, whence she has repaired to Africa to join 
Cato and the eldest son of Pompey, where Sextus informs his brother 
Cneius of their father's death, 117-145. Cneius is desirous to proceed 
to Egypt, but is dissuaded by Cato, 146 166. Cornelia having landed, 
burns the vestments and arms of Pompey, which she has brought 
with her, in place of his body, and performs the funereal rites, 167- 
185. Cato delivers an oration-in praise of Pompey, 186-214. The 
soldiers of Cato become dissatisfied, and wish to return home, the 
chief among the malcontents being Tarchondimotus, the Cilician, 
whom Cato rebukes ; on which another one replies that they followed 
Pompey for his own sake, and not for the love of civil war, and that 
they are now desirous to return home, 215 254. Cato is indignant, 
and by his eloquence prevails upon them to stay, 255-293. The 
soldiers are trained to arms, and the city of Cyrene is taken, 294-299. 
They embark for the kingdom of .Tuba; the Syrtes are described, 
300-318. A tempest arises, and the ships are separated, 319-347. 
The region of Tritonis is described, in which were formerly the golden 
orchards of the Hesperides, and the river Lethe, 348-367. The fleet, 
having escaped the Syrtes, anchors off the coast of Libya, 368-370. 
Cato, impatient of delay, persuades his soldiers to disembark and to 
march over the sandy desert, 371-410. A description of Libya, and 
the evils to be encountered by those who travel there, 411-497. The 
soldiers are tormented by thirst, 498 511. They arrive at the Temple 
of Jupiter Ammon; its situation is described, 512-543. Labienus 
exhorts them to consult the oracle, 544-563. Cato dissuades them, 
saying that it is enough to know that a brave man ought to die with 
fortitude, 564-586. They proceed on their march, and arrive at a 
spring filled with serpents, at which, however, encouraged by Cato, 
they drink, 587-618. The Poet enters on an enquiry how Africa 
came to be thus infested with serpents, and relates the story of 
Medusa, 619-658. And how Perseus cut off her head, 659-684. 
And then flew in the air over Libya, the blood of the Gorgon falling 
on which produced the serpents, which are then described, 685-733. 
During Cato's march, many of his men are killed by the serpents ; 
their deaths are described, 734-838. The complaints of the soldiers, 
839-880. The fortitude of Cato, 881-889. The Paylli assist them 
in their distress by sucking the poison out of their wounds, 890-941. 
They arrive at Leptis, 942-949. In the meantime Caesar, in pur- 
suit of Pompey, sails along the Hellespont and touches at Troy, 950- 
965. Which is described, 966-999. He arrives in Egypt, where 



CONTENTS. xi 

Page 

a soldier, sent by the king, meets him with the head of Pompey, 
1000-1033. Caesar, though really overjoyed, sheds tears, and re- 
proaches Pompey's murderers, and then commands them to appease 
the shade of Pompey, 1034-1108 337 

BOOK X. 

Caesar, although finding the people of Egypt hostile to him, comes to 
Alexandria, and visits the tomb of Alexander the Great, 1-19. The 
Poet inveighs against Alexander and the people of the East, 20-52. 
In the meantime Ptolemy comes to Cassar as a hostage ; Cleopatra 
also obtains admission to him by stratagem, 53-60. The Poet utters 
maledictions against Cleopatra, 61-81. Cleopatra entreats Caesar to 
protect her and her brother against the power of Pothinus, 82-103. 
Caesar assents. The luxury of the Egyptians is described, 104-135. 
The dress and beauty of Cleopatra are depicted, and the sumptuousness 
of the banquet, 136-171. At the feast Caesar addresses Achoreus, 
the chief priest, on the subject of the Egyptian Gods and the sources 
of the Nile, 172-192. Achoreus first combats the false notions that 
exist on the rise of the Nile, 193-261. And then states his own 
opinions on the subject, 262-331. Pothinus plans the death of Caesar 
with Achillas, 332-398. Collecting his soldiers, Achillas surrounds 
the palace, 399-443. Caesar orders the gates to be closed, and detains 
the king as a hostage, 444-467. The palace is besieged, 468-484. 
The valour of Caesar is described. The ships of the enemy being 
burnt, Caesar takes possession of Pharos, 485-509. Pothinus is put 
to death, 510-519. Arsinoe, the younger sister of Ptolemy, slays 
Achillas, 519-529. Ganymedes, the newly-appointed general, ac- 
tively wages the war against Caesar, and the work concludes, 
530-546 384 



LUCAN'S 

PHARSALIA. 



BOOK THE FIKST. 

CONTENTS. 

The nature of the subject, 1-7. The lamentable character of the warfare, 
8-32. The Poet addresses Nero, 33-66. The causes of the war, 67 
-97. The rivalry between Pompey and Caesar after the death of 
Crassus, 98-157. The luxury of Rome, 158-182. Caesar crosses the 
Rubicon, and takes possession of Ariminum, 183-230. The complaints 
of the inhabitants of those parts that they are the first to feel the effects 
of every war, 231-260. Curio, being expelled from Rome, comes to 
Caesar's camp, and entreats him to march against Rome, 261-291. Cassar's 
address to his soldiers, 292-351. The soldiers wavering, Laelius en- 
courages them, 352-385. They consent to march against Rome, 386- 
391. Caesar advancing against Rome, his forces are enumerated, 392-465. 
The reports at Rome on his approach. The fear of the people. The Senators 
and citizens, with Pompey, take to flight, 466-522. Prodigies then be- 
held are recounted, 523-583. Aruns, the Etrurian prophet, is consulted. 
The City is purified. The sacrifices are productive of ill omens. Anins 
presages evil to the state, 584-638. Figulus does the same, 639-672. 
A Roman matron prophesies woe to the City, 673-695. 

WAKS more than civil 1 upon the Emathian plains 2 , and li- 
cense conceded to lawlessness, I sing; and a powerful people 
turning with victorious right-hand against its own vitals, 
and kindred armies engaged ; and, the compact of rule rent 

1 Wars more than civil) ver. 1. There is some doubt as to the meaning 
of this expression. It has been suggested that the Poet refers to the circum- 
stance of foreign nations taking part in a warfare which had originated between 
the citizens of Rome ; while another opinion is, that he alludes to the fact of 
Caesar and Pompey being not only fellow-citizens but connected by marriage. 

2 T/te Ematkian plains) ver. 1. Emathia was properly that part of 
Macedonia which lay between the rivers Haliacmon and Axius. The poets, 
however, frequently give the name of Emathia to Thessaly, which adjoined 
Macedonia, and in which Pharsalia was situate. 

B 



2 PHARSALIA. [B. i. 3-20. 

asunder ', a contest waged with all the might of the shaken 
earth for the universal woe, and standards meeting with hos- 
tile standards, the eagles alike -, and darts threatening darts :l . 
What madness, this, citizens ! what lawlessness so great 
of the sword, while nations are your hate, for you to shed the 
Latian blood ? And, while proud Babylon was to be spoiled 4 
of the Ausonian trophies, and the shade of Crassus was wan- 
dering unavenged, has it pleased you that wars, doomed to 
produce no triumphs, should be waged ? Alas ! how much 
of land and of sea might have been won with that self-same 
blood which the right-hands of fellow-citizens have shed. 
"Whence Titan makes his approach, and where the night con- 
ceals the stars, and where the mid-day intensely burns with 
its scorching moments ; where too, the whiter, frozen and un- 
used to be relaxed by the spring, binds fast the icy ocean with 
Scythian cold ! By this beneath the yoke should the Seres 5 , 
by this the barbarian Araxes 6 , have come, and the race, if 
any there be, that lies situate contiguous to the rising Nile 7 . 

1 The. compact of rule rent asunder) ver. 4. By the use of the word 
" regnum," he probably refers to the compact which had been originally made 
between the Triumvirs Pompey, Caesar, and Crassus, to divide the sovereign 
power among themselves. 

2 T/*e eagles alike) ver. 7. " Pares aquilas." More literally " matched." 
The figure is derived from the " comparatio" or " matching" of the gladiators 
at the gladiatorial games. 

3 And dartt threatening darts) ver. 7. "Pila." Howe, who translates 
it "pile," has the following Note here : " I have chosen to translate the Latin 
word ' pilum ' thus nearly, or indeed rather to keep it and make it English ; 
because it was a weapon, as eagles were the ensigns, peculiar to the Romans, and 
made use of here by Lucan purposely to denote the war made among themselves." 
It was a javelin or dart about five feet in length, which the Roman infantry 
discharged against the enemy at the commencement of the engagement. 

4 Babylon teas to be spoiled) ver. 10. He speaks of Babylon as then 
belonging to the Parthians, who had recently conquered the Crassi with im- 
mense slaughter, a disaster which Had not been avenged. 

5 Beneath the yoke should the Seres) ver. 19. Seres was the name given 
to the inhabitants of Serica, an indefinite region situate in the north-western 
parts of Asia ; but it is generally supposed that a part of China was so called. 
The great wall of China is called by Ammianus Marcellinus " Aggeres Se- 
rium," " The bulwarks of the Seres." 

6 The barbarian, Araxes) ver. 19. There were rivers of this name in 
Armenia, Mesopotamia, Persia, and Thessaly. Probably the first is the one 
here alluded to. 

1 Contiguous to the rising File) ver. 20. The subject of the rise of the 
Nile is fully treated of in the speech of Achoreus, in the Tenth Book. 



B. i. 21-41.] PHAESAL1A. 3 

Then, Home, if so great thy love for an accursed warfare, 
when thou hast subjected the whole earth to Latian laws, 
turn thy hands against thyself; not as yet has a foe been 
wanting to thee. But now that the walls are tottering with 
the dwellings half overthrown throughout the cities of Italy, 
and," the fortifications falling away, vast stones are lying 
there, and the houses are occupied by no protector, and but 
few inhabitants are wandering amid the ancient cities, that 
Hesperia has remained unsightly with brambles and un- 
ploughed for many a year, and that hands are wanting 
for the fields requiring them not thou, fierce Pyrrhus, 
nor yet the Carthaginian 1 , will prove the cause of ruin 
so great; to no sword has it been allowed to penetrate 
the vitals; deep-seated are the wounds of the fellow-citi- 
zen's right hand. 

But if the Fates have decreed no other way 8 for Nero to 
succeed, and at a costly price eternal realms are provided 
for the Gods, and heaven could only obey its own Thunderer 
after the wars of the raging Giants :i ; then in no degree, O 
Gods above, do we complain ; crimes themselves, and law- 
lessness, on these conditions, are approved; let Pharsalia 
fill her ruthless plains, and let the shades of the Cartha- 
ginians be sated with blood ; let the hosts meet for the last 
time at tearful Munda 4 . To these destined wars, Caesar, 

1 Pyrrhus, nor yet the Carthaginian) ver. 30. He alludes to Pyrrhus, 
king of Epirus, and Hannibal the Carthaginian, two of the most terrible ene- 
mies of Rome. 

2 Have decreed no other way) ver. 33. One of the Scholiasts thinks that 
this is said in bitter irony against the Emperor Nero. It is, however, more 
probable that it is intended in a spirit of adulation ; as the First Book was 
evidently written under very different political feelings from the latter ones ; 
in which he takes every opportunity of indirectly censuring the tyrant. 

3 Wars of the raging Giants) ver. 36. He alludes to the Giganto- 
machia, or war between the Gods and the Giants. By this expression he 
either intends a compliment to the fame of Caesar and Pompey individually, 
or to the prowess of the Roman people. 

* At tearful Mwnda) ver. 40. Munda was a village of Spain near 
Malaga, or, according to some, in the neighbourhood of Cordova, where Caesar, 
in the year B.C. 45, defeated the sons of Pompey with the loss of 30,000 
men. Cneins, the eldest, was slain there. The Poet alludes in the preceding 
line to the war carried on in the north of Africa, where Juba sided with the 
partisans of Pompey. 

B 2 



4 PHAESALIA. [B. I. 41-56. 

let the famine of Perusia 1 and the struggles of Mutina 2 be 
added, the fleets, too, which rugged Leucadia overwhelmed 3 , 
and the servile wars beneath the burning ^Etna^; still, much 
does Eome owe to the arms of her citizens, since for thy 
sake these events have come to pass. 

When, thy allotted duties fulfilled, thou shalt late repair 
to the stars, the palace of heaven, preferred by thee, shall 
receive thee 5 , the skies rejoicing ; whether it please thee to 
wield the sceptre, or whether to ascend the flaming chariot 
of Phoebus, and with thy wandering fire to survey the earth, 
hi no way alarmed at the change of the sun ; by every 
Divinity will it be yielded unto thee, and to thy free choice 
will nature leave it what God thou shalt wish to be, where 
to establish the sovereignty of the world. But do thou 
neither choose thy abode in the Arctic circle, nor where the 
sultry sky of the south behind us declines ; whence with 
thy star obliquely thou mayst look upon Rome 7 . If thou 

1 The famine of Perusia) ver. 41. Perusia was an ancient city of Etru- 
ria. L. Antonius, the brother of the Triumvir, took refuge here, and was 
besieged by Augustus for several months, till he was compelled by famine to 
surrender. This lengthened siege gave occasion to that campaign being called 
" Bellum Perusinum." 

2 And the struggles of Mutina) ver. 41. He alludes to the siege of 
Mutina, now Modena, in the years B.C. 44, 43. Decimus Brutus being be- 
sieged there by Marc Antony, the Consuls Hirtius and Pansa hastened to 
relieve him, and perished in battle under its walls. 

3 Which nigged Leucadia overwhelmed) Ter. 43. Keference is made to 
the sea fight at Actium near the isle of Leucas or Leucadia, off the coast of 
Acarnania, in which Augustus defeated Antony and Cleopatra. 

4 Servile wars beneath the lurning JEtna) ver. 44. He alludes to the 
defeat of Seztus, the son of Poinpey, in the Sicilian seas; where a vast number 
of slaves had ranged under his banners. He was first defeated by Agrippa, 
the son-in-law of Augustus, off Mylae, and again off Naulochus, a seaport be- 
tween Mylse and Pelorum in Sicily, B.C. 36. 

s The palace of heaven shall receive thee) ver. 46. This is more abject 
flattery than we could expect from a Poet whose works breathe the intense 
spirit of liberty to be found in the latter books of this Poem. 

a Alarmed at the change of the sun) ver. 49. He probably alludes to 
the disastrous result of Phaeton guiding the chariot of the Sun, when the 
world was set in flames. Nero prided himself upon his skill as a charioteer, 
and not improbably the Poet intends here to flatter him on his weak point. 
Ai to the disaster of Phaeton, see the Metamorphoses of Ovid, at the com- 
mencement of the Second Book. 

7 Obliquely thou mayst look upon Rome) ver. 65. Some of the Scho- 



B. i. 56-77.] PHAKSALIA. 5 

shouldst press upon one side of the boundless aether, the 
sky will be sensible of the burden 1 . Keep thy weight in 
the mid sphere of the balanced heavens ; may all that part 
of the (Ether with sky serene be free from mist, and may no 
clouds interpose before Caesar. 

Then, arms laid aside, may the human race consult its 
own good, and may all nations love one another; may Peace, 
sent throughout the world, keep close the iron thresholds 2 
of the warlike Janus. But to myself already art thou a 
Divinity ; and, if I, a bard, receive thee in my breast, I could 
not wish to invoke the God who moves the mystic shrines 
of Cirrha 3 , and to withdraw Bacchus from Nysa" 1 . Suffi- 
cient art thou to supply inspiration for Roman song. 

My design leads me 5 to recount the causes of events so 
great, and a boundless task is commenced upon ; what it 
was that impelled a frantic people to arms what that 
drove away Peace from the world. The envious course of 
the Fates, and the denial to what is supreme to be of long 
duration ; the heavy fall, too, beneath a weight too great ; 
and Rome that could not support herself. So when, 
its structure dissolved, the last hour shall have closed so 
many ages of the universe, all things shall return once 
more to former chaos ; constellations shall rush on against 
mingled constellations ; fiery stars shall fall into the deep ; 
faith shall refuse to extend her shores, and shall cast away 
th? ocean ; Phoebe shall come into collision with her bro- 

liasts, fancying that all this is said in irony, would have this word ' obliquum,' 
'sidelong,' or 'oblique/ to refer to the squint or cast observable in Nero's 
eye. There seems, however, no ground for this notion. 

1 Will be sensible of the burden) ver. 57. The same Scholiasts think 
that satirical allusion is here made to the fatness of Nero. 

2 Keep close the iron thresholds) ver. 62. He alludes to the Temple of 
Janus, which was shut in time of peace. 

3 The mystic shrines of Cirrha) ver. 64. Cirrha was a town of Phocis, 
situate on Mount Parnassus, near Delphi, sacred to Apollo, who is here re- 
ferred to. 

4 Withdraw Bacchus from Nysa) ver. 65. Nysa was the name of several 
cities sacred to Bacchus. One was in India, which is also supposed to have 
been called Dionysopolis. Another was in ^Ethiopia. The others were in 
Caria, Cappadocia, Thrace, and Boeotia. As the latter was, like Cyrrha, 
situate on Mount Parnassus, it is not improbable that it is the one here re- 
ferred to. 

' My design leads me) ver. 67. The Metamorphoses of Ovid begin with 
the same expression, " fert animus." 



6 PHARSALIA. [u. i. 77-97. 

ther, and, disdaining to guide her two-horsed chariot hi 
its sidelong course, will demand the day for herself ; and 
the whole mechanism, discordant, will confuse the ties of 
the universe rent asunder. 

Mighty things fall of themselves ; this limit to increase 
have the Deities assigned to a prosperous state. Nor yet to 
the advantage of any other nations does Fortune turn her 
hate against a people all-powerful by land and hy sea. Thou, 
Rome, wast the cause of thy own woes, becoming the common 
property of three masters 1 ; the fatal compact 2 , too, for 
sway never successfully entrusted to a number. ye, dis- 
astrously concordant, and blinded by desires too great, why 
does it please you to unite your strength and to share the 
world in common ? While the earth shall support the sea, 
and the air the earth", and his long courses shall whirl on 
Titan in his career, and night shall -succeed the day through 
signs as many, no faith is there hi partners hi rule, and all 
power will be impatient of a sharer. 

And believe not any nations, nor let the examples of 
t his fatality be sought from afar ; the rising walls of Rome 
were steeped with a brother's blood 4 . Nor was the earth 
and the ocean then the reward of frenzy so great ; an humble 
retreat 5 brought into collision its lords. 

1 The common property of three masters) ver. 85. He alludes to the first 
Triumvirate or compact secretly made between Pompey, Caesar, and Crauus 
to share the Roman power between them. By this arrangement Pod^ey 
had Spain and Africa, Crassus Syria, while Caesar's government over Gaul 
was prolonged for five years. 

8 The fatal compact, too) ver. 85, 6. " Nee nmqnam In turbam missi 
feralia foedera regni !" The meaning is, "The sovereign sway divided among 
several, fatal in its consequences, and a thing never successfully done be- 
fore ;" the Romans having hitherto, except in the disastrous times of Sulla 
and Marius, been governed by the laws of the Republic, from the period 
when the kings ceased to reign. 

3 And the air the earth) ver. 90, 1. Ovid has a very similar passage in 
the Metamorphoses, B. i. 1. 11. "The earth did not as yet hang in the 
surrounding air, balanced by its own weight." 

* Steeped with a brother'* blood) ver. 95. He alludes to the death of 
Remus, who, according to some, was slain by the hand of his brother Romu- 
lus ; Ovid, however, in the Fasti, B. iv. 1. 839, says, that he was slain by 
Celer, one of the followers of Romulus. His offence was the contempt which 
he displayed in leaping over the walls of infant Rome. 

* An humble retreat) ver. 97. " Asylum." Under the name " asylum," he 
probably alludes to the whole of the spot on which Rome then stood. Roma- 



B. 1. 98-113.] PHARSALIA. 7 

The discordant concord lasted for a short time ; and peace 
there was, through no inclination of the chieftains. For 
Crassus, interposing, was the sole impediment to the des- 
tined war. Just as the narrow Isthmus 1 which cleaves and 
barely divides the two seas, nor yet allows them to meet 
together ; if the earth were to withdraw, the Ionian would 
dash itself against the JEgean main ; so, when Crassus, who 
kept asunder the ruthless arms of the chieftains, hy a fate 
much to be deplored stained Assyrian Carrhse 2 with Latian 
blood, the Parthian misfortunes let loose the frenzy of 
Home. More, ye descendants of Arsaces 3 , was effected by 
you in that battle than you suppose ; civil warfare you con- 
ferred upon the conquered. 

The sway is cut asunder by the sword ; and the fortunes 
of a powerful people, which embrace the sea, the land, the 
whole earth, brook not two leaders. For Julia, cut off by 
the ruthless hand 4 of the Destinies 5 , bore away to the 
shades below the ties of allied blood, and the marriage 

lus constituted a grove near the Tiber a place of refuge for the slaves and 
criminals of neighbouring states, that he might thereby augment the number 
of his own-citizens. In later times the Asylum was walled in. From a 
passage in the Fasti of Ovid, B. ii. 1. 67, it seems that, running down to the 
banks of the Tiber, it skirted the Capitolium. 

1 Just as the narrow Isthmus) ver. 101. He alludes to the Isthmus of 
Corinth, which connects the Peloponnesus with the main land, and has the 
Ionian Sea on the west, the 2Egean on the east. 

3 Stained Assyrian Carrhee) ver. 105. Carrhae or Carrae, the Haran of 
Scripture, was a city of Osroene in Mesopotamia, not far from Edessa. Cras- 
sus was slain in battle there with the Parthians, B.C. 53. 

3 Ye descendants of Arsaces) v. 108. The kings of Parthia were called 
Arsacicke from Arsaces, the founder of the Parthian empire. He was a per- 
son of obscure origin, and said to. have been a mountain robber. About 
250 B.C. he headed a revolt of the Parthians against Antiochus II., which 
being successful, he became their first monarch. 

4 Julia, cut off by tJie ruthless hand) ver. 113. Julia was the daughter of 
Julius Caesar by his wife Cornelia, and his only child in marriage. She was 
betrothed to Servilius Caepio, but was married to Pompey, B.C. 59. She 
died B.C. 54, and her only child, which some writers state to have been a 
son, some a daughter, died a few days after. Seneca says that Caesar was in 
Britain at the time of Julia's death. Though she was twenty-three years 
younger than Pompey, she was devotedly attached to him, and received a 
shock which proved fatal to her on believing him to have been slain in a 
popular tumult. 

4 Of the Destinies) ver. 113. " Parcarum." Literally, " of the Parcae." 
This was a name of the Fates or Destinies, Clotho, Lachesis, and Atropos. 



8 PHARSALIA. [B. i. 113-128. 

torches 1 , with direful omen, portentous of woe. But if the 
Fates had allowed thee a longer sojourn in life, tliou alone 
hadst been able to restrain on the one side the husband and 
on the other the parent, and, the sword dashed down, to join 
the armed hands, just as the Sabine Avomen, interposing 3 , 
united the sons-in-law with the fathers-in-law. By thy death 
is friendship rent asunder, and license granted to the chief- 
tains to commence the warfare. TJie ambition of rivalry adds 
its spur. 

Thou, Magnus, art afraid lest recent exploits should eclipse 
former triumphs, and the laurels gained from the pirates should 
be eclipsed by 3 the conquest of the Gauls ; thee, Casar, does 
the continuance of thy labours and thy experience gained by 
tliem now elevate, and Fortune 4 that cannot brook a second 
place. Neither can Caesar now endure any one his superior, 
nor Pompey any one his equal. Who with the more justice took 
up arms it is not permitted us to know 3 ; each one defends 
himself with a mighty abettor; the conquering cause was 
pleasing to the Gods, but the conquered one to Cato 6 . 

1 And tlie marriage torches) ver. 112. " Taedae" were the marriage torches 
borne before the bride when -being led to her husband's house. By the 
use of the word " feralia," he means that her marriage torch was ominously 
soon supplanted by the torch which lighted her funeral pile. 

3 As tlie Sabine women interposing) ver. 118. He alludes to the reconci- 
liation effected by the Sabine women, who had been carried off by Romulus 
and his Romans, between their relatives and their husbands, when about to 
engage in mortal combat. The story is prettily told by Ovid in the Fasti, 
B. iii. 1. 201, et seq. See the Translation in Bohn's Classical Library, p. 97. 

3 Laurels gained from tJie pirates should be eclipsed by) ver. 122. He 
alludes to the victories of Caesar in Gaul, and those gained by Pompey over 
the Cilician pirates, who had swarmed in vast numbers in the Mediterra- 
nean, and whom Pompey had defeated with a fleet of 500 ships. The Poet 
alludes to the laurel crown with which Pompey would be grated when pro- 
ceeding in triumph to the Capitol. It may be here remarked that the Poet 
throughout the work calls Pompey by his surname of " Magnus." 

4 And Fortune) ver. 124. " Fortuna." Caesar was in the habit of pay- 
ing especial veneration to the Goddess " Fortune." 

* It is not permitted us to know) ver. 126. This passage does not at all 
correspond with the spirit in which the latter books are written ; where every 
possible invective as a tyrant and murderer is unsparingly lavished upon 
Caesar. It is not improbable that this book was written several years be- 
fore the latter ones, and while the Poet was still enjoying the favour of Nero. 

6 But the conquered one to Cato) ver. 128. This is a great compliment to 
Cato, who is made the hero of the Ninth Book. He was the great-grandson 
of Cato the Censor, and was doubtless the most virtuous of all the illustrioug 
Romans of his day. 



B. i. 129-147.] PHARSALIA. 9 

Nor did they meet on equal terms ; the one, with his 
years tending downward to old age, and grown tranquil 
amid a long practice of the arts of peace', had now in tran- 
quillity 2 forgotten the general; and, an aspirant for fame, 
had been wont to confer upon the public many a largess' 1 ; 
solely to he wafted on by the popular gales, and to exult 
in the applause of a theatre his own 4 ; not to recruit his 
strength afresh, and principally to rely upon his former suc- 
cesses. There stood the shadow of a glorious name 5 : just 
as the lofty oak, hi a fertile field, which bears the spoils 6 of 
an ancient people and the consecrated gifts of chieftains, now 
no longer standing fast by its firm roots, is fixed by its own 
weight; and sending forth its bared branches into the air, 
with its trunk, and not its leaves, forms a shade ; and al- 
though it threatens to fall at the first eastern blast, and 
trees so many around it lift themselves with firmly-rooted 
strength, still it alone is venerated. 

But in Csesar not only was there a name as great, and 
the fame of the general ; but a valour that knew not how to 
rest in one place, and a shame only felt at not conquering in 

1 Of the arts of peace) ver. 130. " Togse." Literally " of the toga." 
This was the robe or gown worn by the Roman citizens in domestic life. 

2 In tranquillity forgotten the general) ver. 131. Pompey triumphed 
over Mithridates B.C. 62, since which time, for a period of fourteen years, 
he had been unused to active warfare. He was only six years older than 
Caesar. 

3 To confer many a largess) ver. 133. "Dare multa." By the word 
" dare" he alludes to the largesses of corn which Pompey plentifully bestowed 
on the Roman populace, and the gladiatorial shows which he exhibited. 

4 Applause of a theatre his own) ver. 133. He alludes to the theatre 
which Pompey built at Rome. It was the first one of stone there erected, 
and was large enough to accommodate 40,000 spectators. It was built 
in the Campus Martins, on the model of one at Mytilene, in the isle of 
Lesbos. It was opened with scenic representations, gladiatorial combats, 
and fights of wild beasts. Five hundred lions were killed, and eighteen ele- 
phants were hunted, and a rhinoceros exhibited for the first time. 

5 Stood the shadow of a glorious name) ver. 135. The Poet probably 
alludes here to Pompey's title or surname of " Magnus," or " Great," which 
was given to him by the Roman people after he had conquered Domitius 
Ahenobarbus and Hiarbas in Sicily. Plutarch informs us that Pompey did 
not use that name himself till he was appointed to the command against Ser- 
torius in Spain. 

6 Tliat bears the spoils) ver. 137. He compares Pompey, enriched with 
the spoil of nations and the rewards of his fellow-citizens, to an oak, upon 
which a trophy has been erected composed of spoils and gifts. 



10 PHARSALIA. [B. L 147-170. 

war. Fierce and unrestrained; ready to lead his troops 
whither hope and whither vengeance should summon, and 
never to spare fleshing his sword ; to press on his own 
advantages, to rely on the favour of the Deity ; bearing 
down whatever opposed himself as he sought the summit, 
and rejoicing amid ruin to have made his way. 

Just as the lightning forced by the winds through the 
clouds flashes forth with the echoes of the riven aether and 
with a crash throughout the universe, and overwhelms the 
light of day, and terrifies the alarmed nations, dazzling the 
eyes with its sidelong flame. It rages against temples its 
own 1 ; and, no matter impeding its going forth, both fall- 
ing, it sends vast, and returning, vast devastation far and 
wide, and collects again its scattered fires. 

These were the motives secretly existing with the chief- 
tains ; but there were public grounds for the warfare, which 
have ever overwhelmed mighty nations. For when, the 
world subdued, Fortune introduced wealth too great, and 
the manners gave way before prosperity, and booty and 
the spoils of the enemy induced luxurious habits ; no mo- 
deration was there in gold or hi houses ; hunger, too, dis- 
dained the tables of former tunes ; dresses hardly suitable 
for the matrons to wear, the males seized hold upon 2 ; po- 
verty fruitful in men 3 was shunned; and that was fetched 
from the entire earth by means of which each nation falls. 
Then did they join the lengthened boundaries of the fields, 
and the extended lands once turned up by the hard plough- 
share of Camillus 4 , and which had submitted to the 
ancient mattocks of the Curii ', lay far and wide beneath 
the charge of husbandmen unknown to their employers. 

1 Against temples tit own) ver. 155. He means that as the lightnings 
rage amid the clouds and the air, their own realms, so Caesar displayed hit 
warlike fury among his own fellow-citizens. 

2 The males seized hold upon) ver. 164. He probably alludes to the use 
of " multitia," certain thin garments and silken textures which had been 
recently introduced into Home. 

3 Fruitful in men) ver. 165. " Virorum." In the sense of " manly spirits." 

4 Ploughshare of Camillna) ver. 168. He alludes to M. Furius Camillus, 
the Roman Dictator, who was said to hare been taken from the plough to 
lead his fellow-citizens against the enemy. He died of the plague, B.C. 365. 

* Mattocks of the Curii) ver. 169. He alludes to Marius Curius Dentatus, 
who held the Consulship with P. Cornelius llufinus, and enabled the Ro- 
mans to withstand Fyrrhus, and triumphed over the Samnites. \Vhen their 



B. J. 171-187.] PHARSALIA. 11 

This was not the people whom tranquil peace might 
avail, whom its own liberty might satisfy with arms un- 
moved. Thence arose ready broils, and the contemptible 
wickedness which poverty could prompt; and the great 
honor, and one worthy to be sought with the sword, to have 
been able to do more than one's own country; might, 
too, was the measure of right; hence laws and decrees 
of the people 1 constrained, and Tribunes confounding their 
rights with Consuls. Hence the Fasces 2 snatched up at 
a price, and the populace itself the vendor of its own 
applause, and canvassing fatal to the city, bringing round 
the annual contests on the venal Plain of Mars' 6 ; hence 
devouring usury, and interest greedy for each moment, 
and credit shaken, and warfare profitable to the many 4 . 

Now had Caesar in his course 5 passed the icy Alps, and 
revolved in his mind the vast commotions and the future 
war. When he had arrived at the waves of the little Eubi- 
con 6 , the mighty image of his trembling country distinctly 
appeared to the chieftain hi the darkness of the night, bear- 
ambassadors came with the intention of bribing him, they found him at work 
in his field, and in answer to their solicitations, he told them that he would 
rather be the ruler of the rich than be rich himself, and that, invincible in the 
field, he could not be conquered by money. He died B.C. 270. 

' Laws and decrees of the people) ver. 176. At Rome the " leges," or 
" laws " were approved by the Senate ; while the " plebiscita," or " decrees 
of the people," were passed at the " Comitia Tributa," or meetings of the 
tribes, on the rogation of a Tribune. 

* Hence the Fasces) ver. 178. "Fasces." These, which were formed of a 
bundle of rods inclosing an axe, were the insignia of the Consular dignity ; 
and the word is frequently used to denote the office itself. Lucan here al- 
ludes to the corrupt and venal manners of the Eoman people at this period. 

3 The venal Plain of Mars) ver. 180. He alludes to the elections of the 
Eoman magistrates in the Campus Martius at Rome, and the system of bri- 
bery by which the suffrages of the people were purchased. 

* Profitable to the many) ver. 182. Those, namely, who had nothing to lose. 
s Ccesar in his course) ver. 185. On his march from Gaul to Italy. 

The leaves of tlie little Rubicon) ver. 185. This was a small river be- 
tween Caesenum and Ariminum, in the north of Italy, falling into the 
Adriatic. It was the ancient boundary of Gaul, which was Caesar's province. 
It is said to have received its name from the red (rubri) stones with which 
it abounded. It is uncertain whether it was the stream called Lusa, or that 
named Pisatello at the present day. It is said that on the bank of this river 
a pillar was placed by a decree of the Senate, with an inscription importing 
that whoever should pass in arms into the Roman territory would be deemed 
an enemy to the state. 



12 PHARSALIA. [B. i. 187-201. 

ing marks of extreme sadness on her features, letting loose 
the white hair from her tower-bearing head, with her long 
locks dishevelled, standing with her arms all bare, and 
uttering these uvrds, mingled with sighs : 

" Whither beyond this do you proceed ? Whither, ye men, 
do you bear my standards ? If rightfully you come, if as 
citizens, thus far you may." Then did horror smite the limbs 
of the chieftain, his hair stood on end, and a languor that 
checked his course withheld his steps on the verge of the 
bank. Soon he exclaims, " O Thunderer, who dost look 
down ' upon the walls of the mighty city from the Tarpeian 
rock, and ye Phrygian Penates of the Julian race 2 , ye se- 
cret mysteries, too, of Quirinus borne away 3 , and Jove 
of Latium, who dost reside in lofty Alba 4 , and ye Vestal 
hearths 5 , and thou, O Rome, equal to a supreme Deity, favour 
my designs ! With no fatal arms am I pursuing thee ; lo ! 

1 Thunderer, who dost look down) ver. 196. He alludes to Jupiter Capi- 
tnlinus, whose temple was on the Capitoline hill, a part of which was called 
the Tarpeian rock, from the virgin Tarpeia, who was killed and buried there. 

* Phrygian Penates of the Julian race) ver. 197. JJneas rescued his 
Penates or household gods from the flames of Troy, the capital of Phrygia. 
Ascanius or lulus, his son, was said to have been the ancestor of the Julian 
family, of which Julius Caesar was a member. Jupiter had a temple, which 
was built on the mountain of Alba by Ascanius, and was there worshipped 
under the name of Jupiter Latialis. The holy Are sacred to Vesta was 
first preserved there, until it was removed from Alba to Rome by Numa. 

3 Mysteries of Quirinus lome away) ver. 197. Quirinus was a name of 
Romulus, derived, according to Dionysius of Haliearnassus, from the Sabine 
language. Some suppose it to have originated in the Sabine word " curis," a 
spear. Lucan here alludes to the mysterious manner in which Romulus dis- 
appeared. It is not improbable that he was slain by his nobles, and that 
through their agent Julius Proculus they spread the report that he had been 
taken up to heaven. In the Fasti of Ovid, B. ii. 1. 505, he is represented 
as saying, " Forbid the Quirites to lament, and let them not offend my 
Godhead with their tears. Let them offer me frankincense, and let the 
multitude pay adoration to Quirinus, their new God, and let them practise 
my father's arts and warfare." 

4 Who dost reside in lofty Alba) ver. 198. Alba Longa was said to be 
the most ancient town in Latium, and to have been founded by Ascanius, 
the son of ./Eneas. It derived its name of Longa from its extending in a 
long line down the Alban mount toward the Alban lake. It was totally de- 
stroyed by Tullus Hostilins, and its inhabitants were removed to Rome. 

4 And ye Vestal hearths) ver. 199. He alludes to the sacred fire which 
was tended by the Vestal virgins in the Temple of Vesta, said to have 
been brought from Troy by J2neas. 



B. I. 201-230.] PHARSALIA. 13 

here am I, Caesar, the conqueror by land and hy sea. every- 
where (if only it is permitted me) thine own soldier even 
still. He will it be, he the guilty one, who shall make 
me thy foe ! " 

Then did he end the respite from the warfare, and swiftly 
bore the standards through the swollen stream. Just as when 
in the parched plains of sultry Libya a lion, his enemy 
perceived at hand, crouches undecided until he collects all 
his fury ; soon as he has aroused himself by the lashings 
of his infuriate tail, and has raised his mane erect, and 
from his vast throat the loud roar re-echoes ; then, if the 
light lance of the Moor, hurled, pierces him, or the hunt- 
ing spears enter his broad chest, amid the weapons, 
careless of wounds so great, he rushes on. 

From a small spring rises the ruddy Rubicon, and, 
when fervid summer glows, is impelled with humble waves, 
and through the lowly vales it creeps along, and, a fixed 
boundary, separates from the Ausonian husbandmen the 
Gallic fields. At that time winter 1 gave it strength, and 
now the showery Cynthia with her blunted horn for the 
third tiime 2 had swollen the waves, and the Alps were 
thawed by the watery blasts of the eastern breeze. First 
of all the charger 3 is opposed obliquely to the stream, to 
bear the brunt of the floods ; then the rest of the throng 
bursts through the pliant waves of the river, now broken in 
its course, across the easy ford. When Csesar, the stream 
surmounted, reached the opposite banks, and stood upon 
the forbidden fields of Hesperia ; " Here," said he, " here do 
I leave peace, and the violated laws behind ; thee, Fortune, 
do I follow ; henceforth, far hence be treaties ! The Desti- 
nies have we trusted ; War as our umpire we must adopt." 

Thus having said, the active leader in the shades of 
night hurries on his troops, and swifter than the hurled 

1 At that time winter) ver. 217. Caesar passed the Rubicon at the end of 
the month of January. 

' With her Hunted horn for the third time) ver. 218. " Tertia Cynthia" is 
probably the third night after the change of the moon. The passage seems to 
menn that it had mined three nights (and probably days) successively. 

* The charger) ver. 220. ' ; Sonipes," " sounding hoof," is the name gene- 
rally used by Lucan when he speaks of the charger or war-horse. 



14 PHARSALIA. [B. 1. 230-249. 

charge of the Balearic sling 1 , and the arrow 2 shot 
behind the back of the Parthian ; and threatening he sur- 
prises Ariminum 3 . Lucifer left behind, the stars fled 
from the fires of the sun, and now arose the day doomed 
to behold the first outbreak of the war. Whether by the 
will of the Gods, or whether the murky south wind im- 
pelled them, clouds obscured the saddened light. When in 
the captured Forum the soldier halted, commanded to pitch 
his standard, the clash of clarions and the clang of trum- 
pets sounded the ill-omened signals 4 together with the 
hoarse-sounding horn. The rest of the people was broken, 
and, aroused from their beds, the youth snatched down the 
arms fixed up near the hallowed Penates, which a pro- 
longed peace still afforded ; they laid hold of shields decaying 
with the frames now bare, and darts with blunted points, 
and swords rough with the cankering of swarthy rust. 

When the well-known eagles glittered, and the Koman 
standards, and Csesar mounted aloft was beheld hi the 
midst of the ranks, they grew chilled with alarm, icy dread 
bound fast their limbs, and they revolved these silent 
complaints within their speechless breasts : " O walls ill 
founded, these, with the Gauls for their neighbours 5 ! O walls 

1 Of the Balearic sling) ver. 229. The Baleares were islands in the Me- 
diterranean, off the coast of Spain, and were called " Major" and " Minor ;" 
whence their present names Majorca and Minorca. Their inhabitants were 
noted for their great skill in the use of the sling, and were much employed in 
the Roman and Carthaginian armies. 

2 The arrow) yer. 230. The Parthians were filmed for the dexterity 
with which they used the bow when retreating on horseback at the swiftest 
speed. 

3 He surprises Ariminum) ver. 231. Ariminum, now called Rimini, was a 
city of TJmbria, on the coast of the Adriatic; about nine miles south of the 
Rubicon. The Via Flaminia and the Via JEmilia led to it from Rome. 
Caesar took possession of it immediately after passing the Rubicon, as being 
a spot from which he could conveniently direct his operations against Etruria 
and Picenum. Caesar informs us in his account of the Civil War, B. i., c. 8, 
that he took possession of this place with the 13th legion, and that here he 
met the Tribunes who had fled to him from Rome for protection. 

4 The ill-omened signals) ver. 238. Because sounding the note of civil 
war. 

* The Gauls for tiieir neighbours) ver. 248. Ariminum was originally inha- 
bited by the Umbrians, then by the Senonian Gauls, who were expelled by 
the Romans in the year B.C. 268, when it was colonized from Rome. 



B. i. 249-265.] PHARSALIA. 15 

condemned to a hapless site ! Profound peace and tranquil 
repose is there throughout all nations, we are the prey and the 
first encampment for these thus frenzied. Far better, For- 
tune, wouldst thou have afforded an abode in an eastern 
clime, and under the icy north, and wandering abodes 1 , 
rather than to have to protect the threshold of Latium. We 
were the first to behold the commotions of the Senones 2 , 
the Cimbrian 3 , too, rushing on, and the hosts of Libya 4 , 
and the career of the Teutonic rage. As oft as Fortune 
aims a blow at Eome, this is the passage for the warfare." 

Thus with a secret sigh spoke each, not venturing to ex- 
press his alarm aloud ; no voice was entrusted to anguish ; 
but in the same degree in which, when the winter keeps in 
the birds, the fields are silent, and the mid ocean without a 
murmur is still, thus profound was the silence. Light has 
now dispelled the cold shades of night ; lo ! the Fates sup- 
ply to his wavering mind the torches of war and induce- 
ments provoking to battle, and rend asunder all the pauses 
of moderation ; Fortune struggles that the movements of 
the chieftain shall be justified, and discovers pretexts for 
his arms. 

' And wandering abodes) ver. 253. He alludes either to the wander- 
ing life of the Numidian tribes or of the Scythians, who were said to move 
from place to place, and to live in waggons. 

* The commotions of the Senones) ver. 254. The Senonian Gauls were 
originally from Gallia Lugdunensis, dwelling near the Sequana or Seine. A 
part of their people passed into Italy by way of the Alps about B.C. 400, 
and penetrating to the south, they took up their abode on the borders of the 
Adriatic, after expelling the Umbrians. Marching against Rome they took 
all the City except the Capitol, B.C. 390. They were finally subdued by the 
Romans, and the greater part of them destroyed by the Consul Dolabella, B.C. 
283. Of course Ariminum, being at the very verge of Italy, would be ex- 
posed to their first attacks. 

3 T/ie Cimbrian, too) ver. 254. The Cimbri are supposed to have originally 
inhabited the Chersonesus Cimbrica, or Jutland. Migrating south with the 
Teutoni and Ambrones, they overran Gaul, which they ravaged in all direc- 
tions. They repulsed several Roman armies with great slaughter, but were ulti- 
mately defeated by Caius Marius near Aquae Sextiae (now Aix) in Gaul, and 
by Marius and Catulus at the battle of Cainpi Raudii, near Verona, B.C. 101. 

4 And the hosts of Libya) ver. 255. Under the name of " Mars Libyes" 
he alludes to the Punic wars; in the second of which Ariminum played a 
distinguished part. In the year B.C. 218 Sempronius directed his legions 
thither in order to oppose Hannibal in Cisalpine Gaul ; and throughout that 
war it was one of the points to which the greatest importance was attached 
from its commanding position. 



16 PHARSALIA. [u. i. 266-276. 

The threatening Senate, the law violated, expelled from 
the divided city the differing Tribunes \ the Gracchi being 
thrown in their teeth 2 . These now repairing to the stand- 
ards of the chieftain moving onward and in their vicinity, 
the daring Curio, with his venal tongue 3 , accompanies; a 
voice that once was the people's, and that had dared to 
defend liberty, and to place armed potentates on a level 
with the lower classes 4 . 

And when he beheld the chieftain revolving his various 
cares in his breast, he said, " While, Csesar, thy party 
could be aided by my voice, although against the will of 
the Senate, then did we prolong thy rule 5 , so long as I had 

1 Expelled the differing Tribunes} ver. 266. Caesar offered to lay down 
his command if Pompey would do the same ; but the party of the latter 
would listen to no proposals for an accommodation. Quintus Cassius Longi- 
nus, and Marc Antony, the Tribunes of the people, ventured to speak 
boldly in behalf of Caesar, but were violently censured by the Consuls 
Marcellus and Lentulus, who reminded them very significantly of the con- 
duct and fate of the Gracchi, and threatened them with a similar end; on 
which they escaped from the city by night, disguised like slaves, and fled to 
Caesar at Ariminnm. This the Poet considers to be unfortunate, inasmuch 
as it would consequently appear that Caesar marched towards Rome for no 
other reason than to preserve the privileges of the Tribunes, and to support 
the laws of his country. 

3 The Gracchi leing throvm, in their teeth) ver. 267. Tiberius and Caius 
Gracchus devoted their public career to asserting the rights of the Plebeians 
againat the Patricians of Rome, for which reason their names became by- 
words for sedition and violence. They both met with violent deaths at 
different periods. 

3 The, daring Curio, with hit venal tongue) ver. 269. C. Scribonius Curio 
was an orator of great natural talents. He first belonged to the party of 
Pompey; but having run deeply into debt, he abandoned him and joined 
Caesar, on the understanding that he would pay off all his liabilities. When 
the Senate demanded that Caesar should lay down his command before coming 
into the city, Curio proposed that Pompey should do the same. While he 
was opposing the party of Pompey in the Senate, the year of his Tribune- 
ship came to a close, and, fearing for his own safety, he fled from the city 
and joined Caesar at Ariminum ; or, according to some, at Ravenna. 

* On a, level t?ith the loiter classes) ver. 271. By his eloquence he was 
able to counteract the ambition of great men, and to reduce them to a private 
station. It is supposed by some that Curio is the person referred to by Virgil 
in the sixth Book of the JKncid, in the famous words, " Vendidit hie auro pa- 
triam." " This man sold his country for gold." 

4 Then did we prolong/ thy rule) ver. 275. He takes to himself the 
credit of having obtained for Csasar a prolongation of his government of 
Gaul for another five years. 



B. I. 27.6-291.] PHARSALIA. 17 

the liberty to occupy the Eostra *, and to bring over to thee 
the wavering Quirites. But after the laws, coerced by war- 
fare, were dumb, we were driven from our paternal homes, 
and of our own accord we endured exile ; ' t is thy victory will 
make us citizens again. While, strengthened with no 
support, the factions are still in doubt, away with delay ! it 
always injures men prepared to procrastinate. Equal labours 
and anxieties are being sought for a greater reward 2 . Gaul 
has kept thee engaged in war for twice five years 3 , a portion 
of the earth how trifling ! If with a happy result thou hast 
fought a few battles, Rome for thee will subdue the world J ! 
" Now neither does the procession of the lengthened 
triumph 5 receive thee returning, nor does the Capitol 
demand the consecrated laurels. Cankering envy denies 
thee everything; and hardly wilt thou escape with im- 
punity having subdued the foe ; it is the determination of 
the son-in-law to deprive the father-in-law 6 of the sway. 
Thou canst not share the earth ; alone thou mayst pos- 
sess it." 

1 To occupy the Rostra) ver. 275. " Eostra," or " The Beaks," was the 
name given to the stage in the Forum at Rome, from which the Orators 
addressed the populace. It was so called from having been adorned with 
the "rostra," or " beaks " of the ships of war taken from the Antiates. The 
Rostra were transferred by Julius Caesar to another part of the Forum, from 
which time the spot where the ancient Rostra had stood was called " Rostra 
Vetera," while the other was styled the " Rostra Nova," or " Rostra Julia." 

2 Are sought for a greater reward) ver. 282. Meaning, " The risk and 
labour are equal to those you encountered in the Gallic war, but the reward 
will be far greater." 

3 For twice five years) ver. 283. " Geminis lustris." The original mean- 
ing of the word " lustrum " (which was derived from " luo," " to cleanse," 
or "atone for,") was, "a purifying sacrifice," offered in behalf of the whole 
people by one of the Censors, after finishing the census or review of the 
Roman people, at the end of every five years, or four years according to 
the Julian Calendar. The Gallic campaigns of Caesar extended over a 
period of ten years. 

4 Rome for thee will subdue the world) ver. 285. That is to say, " in 
conquering Rome you will have conquered the world." 

5 Procession of (fa lengthened triumph) ver. 286. He alludes to the un- 
just refusal which Caesar had met with when he demanded a triumph for his 
conquests in Gaul. 

a The son-in-law to deprive the father-in-law) ver. 289. Throughout his 
poem, Lucan generally styles Caesar " socer," " the father-in-law," and 
Ponipey " gener," " the son-in-law," relatively to each other. The marriage 
of Pompey to Julia, the daughter of Caesar, has been previously referred to. 





13 PHAKSAL1A. [B. L 291-313. 

After he bad thus spoken, and had aroused iu him, 
though eager already for the war, much anger still, and had 
inflamed the chieftain, hi the same degree as the Elean 
courser is urged on by the shouts 1 , although, the starting 
place now closed 2 , he struggles against the door, and head- 
long loosens the bolts. - Forthwith he summons the armed 
maniples :f to the standards, and when, the multitudes collect- 
ing, he has well calmed their hurrying tumultuousness, with 
his countenance and his right hand he enjoins silence : 

" O companions in war ! " he exclaims, " who together with 
me have experienced the thousand hazards of battle, now 
in the tenth year that you have conquered, has your blood, 
shed in the regions of the north, deserved this, and wounds 
and death, and winters passed at the foot of the Alps? 
Not otherwise is Home convulsed by the vast tumultuous 
preparations for war, than if the Punic Hannibal were de- 
scending from the Alps. With stout recruits the cohorts 
are being filled ; for the fleet every forest is falling ; and 
both by sea and by land is Csesar ordered to be expelled. 
What, if my standards had lain prostrate in adverse war- 
fare, and if the fierce nations of the Gauls had been rushing 
close on our backs ? Now, when Fortune acts with me hi 
prospering circumstances, and the Gods are summoning us 
to the mastery, we are challenged. Let him come to the 
war, the chieftain, enfeebled by prolonged peace 4 , with his 
soldiery so hastily levied, his toga-clad partisans, too, and 

1 Elean courser it urged on by the shouts) ver. 294. He alludes to the 
coursers in the chariot races at the Olympic games, which were celebrated 
in the territory of Elis, in the Peloponnesus. 

2 The starting place closed) ver. 295. The "carceres" were vaults at the 
end of the race-course, closed by gates of open woodwork, which, on the 
signal being given, were simultaneously opened by the aid of men and 
ropes, and the chariots came forth, ready for starting. The " carceres " were 
fastened with " repagula," " bars " or " bolts." 

3 Sumnnont the armed maniples) ver. 296. In the early times of the 
Koman state a bundle of hay on the end of a pole served the Roman army 
for the purposes of a standard. To each troop of a hundred men, a " mani- 
pulus," or " wisp " of hay (so called from " manum implere," " to fill the 
hand," as forming a handful), was assigned as a standard, and hence in time 
the company itself obtained the name of " manipulus," and the soldier, as a 
member of it, was called " manipularis." 

4 The chieftain, enfeebled by prolonged peace) ver. 311. He alludes to 
Pompey, in recent years grown unused to warfare. 



B. L 313-322.] PHARSALIA. 19 

the loquacious Marcellus 1 , the Catos as well, mere idle 
names 2 . Will, forsooth, men from afar 3 and purchased 
dependants still associate Pompey with the sway for years 
so many ? Is he to be guiding the triumphal chariot, his 
years not yet permitting it 4 ? Is he never to resign the 
honors which he has once usurped? Why need I now 
complain of the fields placed under restraint 5 throughout 
the whole earth, and how that starvation at his command has 
become his slave ? Who does not know how the camp has 
been intermingled with the trembling Forum ? When the 
swords ominously threatening surrounded the terrified judg- 
ment seat 6 with an unwonted array, and, the soldiery pre- 
suming to burst in upon the midst of the legal proceedings, 

1 The loquacious Marcellus) ver. 313. C. Claudius Marcellus is re- 
ferred to, who, when Consul, together with his colleague, Cornelius Len- 
tulus, distinguished himself by his fierce animosity against Csesar. He 
appears to have been a person of slender abilities, and a tool in the hands of 
the partisans of Pompey. Judging from the present passage, he was probably 
noted for his garrulity. It is supposed that he perished in the Civil War. 

2 The Catos, as well, mere idle names) ver. 313. The plural number is 
used here as a contemptuous mode of expression. M. Porcius Cato was 
tbe only one of the family who was distinguished at this period. 

3 Men from afar) ver. 314. Cortius thinks that the word " extremi " 
refers to the " lowest," or " dregs" of the people. It is more probable that it 
alludes to persons or nations from a distance, as Pompey had gained victories 
and subdued nations in Spain, Africa, Asia Minor, and other parts of the 
world. 

4 His years not yet permitting it) ver. 316. According to the laws of 
Rome, a general was not allowed to enjoy a triumph till he had arrived at 
his thirtieth year. Pompey having conquered Hiarbas, King of Numidia, 
who had espoused the cause of Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus, the Marian 
leader, obtained a triumph before he had attained his twenty-fifth year. 

5 Fields placed under restraint) ver. 318. We are informed by Cicero, 
in his Epistles to Atticus, and by Plutarch, in the Life of Pompey, that 
by a law passed for the purpose, the whole power of importing corn was 
entrusted to Pompey for five years ; and Plutarch states that it was asserted 
by Clodius that the law was not made by reason of the scarcity of corn, 
but that the scarcity of corn was made that it might give rise to a law to 
invest Pompey with a power almost supreme. Pompey was accused of 
having, by his agents, used under-hand means to create this scarcity. 

8 Surrounded the terrified judgment seat) ver. 321. He alludes to the 
conduct of Pompey, on the occasion when T. Annius Papianus Milo was 
accused of the murder of Clodius, and defended by Cicero, who then pro- 
nounced his oration pro Milone, or rather a part of it, as, being intimi- 
dated, he forgot a large portion of what he had intended to say in favour 
of his client. Pompey was then the sole Consul, and to prevent the tumults 

c a 



20 PHARSALIA. [u. i. 323-337. 

the standards of Pompey closed around the accused Milo. 
Now, too, lest an old age spent in privacy should await him 
in his feebleness, he is preparing for contests accursed, 
accustomed to civil warfare, and, trained by crimes, to 
surpass his master Sulla'. And as the fierce tigers never 
lay aside their fury, which, in the Hyrcanian forest*, while 
they haunted the lairs of their dams, the blood deep-drawn 
of the slain herds has nurtured ; so too, Magnus, does thy 
thirst survive to thee accustomed to lick the sword of Sulla. 
Once received within the lips, no blood allows the polluted 
jaws to become satiated. Still, what end will power meet 
with, thus prolonged ? What limit is there to crimes '? At 
least, dishonorable man, let this Sulla of thine teach thee 3 
now to dismount from this supreme sway. Shall then, after 
the wandering Cilicians 4 , and the Pontic battles of the ex- 
hausted monarch 5 , with difficulty ended through barbarian 

that were threatened by the friends of Clodius, he lined the Forum and the 
surrounding hills with soldiers. This was contrary to law, and though 
Pompey aided the prosecution of Milo, Caesar is made to insinuate, in the 
present speech, that it was done to protect him ; whereas, in all probability, 
Pompey acted thus solely with the view of maintaining the public peace. 
Milo was condemned, and retired in exile to Massilia or Marseilles. 

1 To surpass his master Sulla) ver. 326. Pompey was one of the most 
successful legates of the Dictator Sulla, in the latter part of the civil wars 
against the Marian faction. He married JEmilia, the step-daughter of Sulla, 
having put away his wife, Antistia, for that purpose. 

2 In the Hyrcanian forest) ver. 328. The Hyrcanian forest was situate 
on the shores of the Caspian Sea. It was said to be the haunt of numerous 
panthers, leopards, and tigers, to which reference is here made. The country 
of Hyrcania flourished most under the Parthian kings, who often resided 
there during the summer. 

3 Let this Sulla of thine teach thee) ver. 335. He alludes to the retire- 
ment of Sulla from public life, who, at the age of sixty, resigned the Dic- 
tatorship, and retired to the town of Puteoli. 

4 sifter the wandering Cilicians) ver. 336. The pirates are alluded to, 
who were conquered by Pompey, and whose strongholds were on the coast 
of Cilicia, in Asia Minor. 

5 The Pontic battles of the exhausted monarch) ver. 336. He alludes to 
the death of Mithridates, king of Pontus, who waged war with the Romans 
for a period of forty years. Having received many overthrows from Sulla 
and Lucullus, he was ultimately conquered by Pompey. Being closely be- 
sieged in a fortress by his son Pharnaces, he attempted to poison himself, 
but from his previous continued use of antidotes, he was unable to do so ; 
on which he fell on his sword and perished. In the next line Caesar refers 
to the protracted length of this war. 



B. i. 337-358.] PHARSALIA. 21 

poison, Caesar be granted to Pompey as a last province, 
because, commanded to lay down my conquering eagles, I 
did not obey? If from myself the reward of my labours 
is torn away, to these, at least, let the rewards of their 
prolonged service be granted, though not with their general ; 
under some leader, whoever he is, let these troops enjoy 
their triumph. Whither, after the wars, shall pallid old age 
betake itself? What settlement is there to be for those 
who have served their time ? What lands shall be granted l 
for our veterans to plough- ? What walls for the invalided ? 
Or, Magnus, shall pirates, in preference, become the settlers 3 ? 
Victorious already, raise, raise your standards ; the might we 
must employ, which we have acquired ; to him who wields 
arms does he surrender everything who refuses what is his 
due. The Deities, too, will not forsake us ; for neither is 
plunder nor sovereignty sought by my arms ; we are tear- 
ing away its tyrants 4 from a City ready to be enslaved." 

Thus he speaks ; but the hesitating ranks mutter among 
themselves words of indecision in whispers far from dis- 
tinct ; duty and their paternal Penates check their feelings 
although rendered fierce with carnage, and their swelling 
spirits; but through ruthless love of the sword and 
dread of their general, they are brought back. Then 
Lcelius, Avho held the rank 5 of first centurion, and wore the 

1 What lands shall lie granted) ver. 344. The " emeriti " in the 
Roman armies were those who had served for the stipulated time, and were 
entitled to immunity for the future. 

* For our -veterans to plouyli) ver. 345. When an "emeritus" was induced 
to continue in the service, either from attachment to his general, or from hopes 
of promotion, he was called " veteranus." When the " emeriti" retired from 
the service, it was usual to bestow on them grants of the public land. 

3 Pirates, in preference, become tlie settlers) ver. 346. He refers to the 
manner in which Pompey disposed of the Cilician pirates after he had con- 
quered them ; some of whom he distributed among the cities of Cilicia, and 
many were settled at Soli, on the Cicilian coast, which had lately been 
depopulated by Tigranes, king of Armenia, and which was thenceforth 
called Pompeiopolis. Others received grants of land at Dymae, in Achaia, 
others in Calabria. 

4 We are tearing away its tyrants) ver. 351. He probably alludes here 
to the sons of Pompey, as well as their father. 

s Lcelius, who held the rank) ver. 357. Lselius was the " primipilus," or 
" first centurion " of the thirteenth legion. The " primipilus " commanded 
the first maniple of the " Triarii," and was next in rank to the military 
Tribunes. In his charge was the eagle of the legion, which, perhaps, is here 



22 PHARSALIA. [B. i. 358-372. 

insignia of the decoration won in service 1 , the oak that 
bespoke the reward for saving a citizen 2 , exclaimed: 

" If it is lawful, greatest guardian of the Roman fame, 
and if it is allowed to utter the accents of truth that a 
patience so long enduring has withheld thy might, do we 
complain. Was it that confidence hi us was wanting to thee? 
So long as the warm Wood imparts motion to these breath- 
ing bodies, and so long as stalwart arms have might to hurl 
the javelin, wilt thou be submitting to the degenerate arts of 
peace 8 , and the sovereign sway of the Senate ? Is it so very 
dreadful to prove the conqueror hi civil war ? Come, lead us 
amid the tribes of Scythia, amid the inhospitable shores of 
Syrtis 4 , amid the sultry sands of thirsting Libya. This army, 
when it left the conquered world behind its back, stilled the 
swelling waves of Ocean 5 with its oars, and subdued the 
foaming Rhine at its northern mouth 6 . To me, in following 
thy commands, it 'is as much a matter of course to do, as 

referred to under the title of " insignia." The vine sapling with which they 
had the power of inflicting punishment on refractory soldiers was another of 
the insignia of the centurions. 

1 Won in service) ver. 357. " Emeriti." On the meaning of this word, 
see the Note to 1. 344. 

4 The reward for saving a citizen) ver. 358. The " corona civica," or 
" civic crown," was the second in honor and importance in the Roman 
armies, and was presented to the soldier who had saved the life of a fel- 
low-citizen in battle. It was originally made from the " ilex," afterwards 
from the "jesculns," and, finally, from the "quercus," three different kinds 
of oak. The elder Pliny informs us that before the claim was allowed it 
was necessary to satisfy the following requisitions to have saved the life of 
a fellow-citizen in battle, slain his opponent, and maintained his ground. 

s Degenerate arts of peace) ver. 365. " Togam." Literally, the " toga," 
or " gown," which was worn by the citizens in time of peace. 

4 Inhospitable shores of Syrtis) ver. 367. There were two quicksands off 
the coast of Africa, known by the name of " Syrtis" or " Syrtes." The greater 
Syrtis was a wide gulf on the shores of Tripolita and Cyrenaica, opposite 
the mouth of the Adriatic. It was especially dangerous for its sandbanks 
and quicksands, and its exposure to the northern winds ; while on the shore 
it was skirted by loose burning sands. The lesser Syrtis lay considerably to 
the west of the other one, and was dangerous from its rocky shores and the 
variableness of its tides. 

4 Stilled tin swelling waves of Ocean) ver. 370. He alludes to the passage 
of Caesar from the coast of Gaul to that of Britain. 

At its northern mouth) ver. 371. "Venice;" literally, "heights." 
There is considerable doubt among the Commentators as to the exact mean- 
ing of this word in the present passage. 



B. i. 372-395.] PHARSALIA. 23 

it is to will. And no fellow-citizen of mine, Csesar, is he 
against whom I shall hear thy trumpet-signal. By the 
prospering standards of thy ten campaigns I swear, and 
by thy triumphs gained over every foe ; if thou shouldst bid 
me bury my sword in the breast of my brother, in the throat 
too of my parent, and in the entrails of my wife teeming 
with her burden, still, though with unwilling right hand, 
I will do all this ; if to despoil the Gods, and to set fire to 
the Temples, the flames of thy camp 1 shall envelope the 
Divinity of Juno Moneta ; if to pitch the camp above the 
waves of Etrurian Tiber 2 , a bold marker-out of the en- 
campment will I enter upon the Hesperian fields. Whatever 
walls thou shalt desire to level with the plain, impelled by 
these arms the battering-ram shall scatter the stones far 
and wide ; even though that city which thou shouldst order 
to be utterly razed should be Eome herself." 

To these words the cohorts at once shout assent, and 
pledge themselves with hands lifted on high, for whatever 
wars he shall summon them to. An uproar ascends to the 
skies as vast, as, when the Thracian Boreas beats against 
the crags of pine-bearing Ossa 3 , the trunks bending of the 
woods bowed down, or returning again upright into the air, 
the roar of the forests arises. 

Caesar, when he perceives that the war is embraced by the 
soldiers thus heartily, and that the Fates are favouring, that 
by no indecision he may impede his fortune, summons forth 
the cohorts scattered throughout the Gallic fields, and with 
standards moved from every direction marches upon Home. 

1 The flames of thy camp) ver. 380. " Numina miscebit castrensis 
flamma MoneUe." The exact meaning of this passage has caused much dis- 
cussion among the Commentators, but it seems most probable that the 
veteran is expressing his readiness, at the command of his general, to melt 
the statues of the Gods in the flames for his master's purposes. Under the 
name Moneta, as the protectress of money, Juno had a Temple on the 
Capitoline Hill, in which was the mint of Rome. The speaker probably 
means to hint his readiness, if necessary, to march into the very heart 
of Rome to seize the statues of the Divinities. 

3 Waves of Elrv.nan Tiler) ver. 381. The Tiber takes its rise in the 
ancient country of Etruria. 

3 The crags of pine-bearing Ossa) ver. 389. Ossa was a mountain much 
celebrated by the poets. It was in the north of Magnesia, in Thessaly, and 
was in the vicinity of Pelion and Olympus, but was much less lofty than the 
latter. 



24 PHAKSALIA. [B. I. 396-406. 

They deserted the tents pitched by the cavity of Lemanus l , 
and the camp which soaring aloft above the curving rock of 
Vogesus 2 used to overawe the pugnacious Lingones :l with 
their painted arms. Those left the shallows of Isara J , which 
running with its own flood through such an extent, falling 
into a stream of greater fame, bears not its men name down 
to the ocean waves. The yellow-haired Rutenr' are re- 
lieved from the prolonged garrison; the placid Atax c re- 
joices at no longer bearing the Latian keels ; the Varus, 
too 7 , the limit of Hesperia, her boundaries now extended 8 ; 
where, too, beneath the divine authority of Hercules, the 
consecrated harbour adjoins the sea 9 with its hollowed 

1 Lemanus) ver. 396. Now the Lake of Geneva. 

2 Curving rock of Vogesus) ver. 397. Vogesus, or Vosgesus, now the 
Vosges, was the name of a range of mountains in Gaul, running parallel to 
the river Rhine. The rivers Seine, Saone, and Moselle rise in these moun- 
tains. 

3 The pugnacious Lingones) ver. 398. The Lingnnes were a powerful 
people of Transalpine Gaul, separated from the Sequani by the river Arar, 
or Saone. Their chief town was Andeinaturinum, afterwards Lingones, 
now called Langres. Tacitus informs us that the Germans were also 
accustomed to paint their arms. 

4 The shallows of Isara) ver. 399. Isara, now the Isere, a river of Gaul, 
flows into the Rhone, north of Valentia. 

5 The yellow-haired Ruteni) ver. 402. The Ruteni, or Rutbeni, were a 
people of Gallia Aquitanica. Their chief town was Segodunum, afterwards 
Civitas Rutenorum, now called Rodez. 

* The placid Atax) ver. 403. The Atax, or Narbo, was a river of Gallia 
Narbonensis, rising in the Pyrenees : it is now called Aude. 

7 The Varus, too) ver. 404. The Varus, now called Var, or Varo, was a 
river of Gallia Narbonensis, rising in Mount Cema, in the Alps, and falling 
into the Mediterranean. 

* Her boundaries now extended) ver. 404. " Promote limite." This 
passage has presented difficulties to some of the Commentatorsj but it is 
pretty clear that he alludes to the period when, the Roman state having 
extended beyond its former limits, the Rubicon was no longer considered the 
boundary which separated Italy from Gaul, and the Varus, which lay far to 
the north-west of it, was substituted as such in its place. Hesperia, or the 
" country of the West," was one of the ancient names of Italy. Spain also 
was sometimes called by that name. 

9 The consecrated harbour adjoins the sea) ver. 405. This was the " Por- 
tus Monoeci," a seaport on the coast of Liguria, founded by the Massilians. 
The town was situate on a promontory, and possessed a temple of Her- 
cules Monoecus, from whom the place derived its name. The harbour was 
of importance, as being the only one on this part of the coast of Liguria. 
Hercules was said to have touched here when on his expedition against 
Geryon, king of Spain. 



B. I. 406-422.] PHAESALIA. 25 

rocks ; no Corus l holds sway over it, nor yet the Zephyr ; 
alone does Circius 3 disturb the shores his own, and with- 
holds the ships from the safe harbour of Monoecus. Where, 
too, the doubtful coast extends 3 , which land and sea claim 
at alternate periods, when the vast ocean is poured forth 
upon it, or when with ebbing waves it retreats. Whether 
it is tJiat the wind thus rolls 4 on the sea from distant 
climes, and bearing it on there leaves it ; or whether the 
waves of wandering Tethys 5 , influenced by the second of 
the heavenly bodies fi , flow at the lunar hours ; or whether 
the flaming Titan, that he may quaff the refreshing waves, 
uplifts the ocean, and raises the billows to the stars do 
you enquire, whom the economy of the universe engages ; 
but to me, thou Cause, whatever thou art, that dost 
govern movements thus regular, as the Gods of heaven 
have willed it so, for ever lie concealed ! 

Then does he, who occupies the fields of Nemetis 7 and 
the banks of the Aturus 8 , where on the curving shore, flowing 
by Tarbela 9 , it encloses the sea gently flowing in, move his 

1 No Corus holds sway) ver. 406. Corus, or Cauvus, the Argestes of the 
Greeks, is considered a stormy wind in Italy. It blows from the north-west. 

2 Alone does Circius) ver. 407. Circius was a violent wind which was 
said to blow in the ancient Gallia Narbonensis. According to some it blew 
from the north-north-west, while others call it a south wind. The latter 
seems most probably the case, as if, as is sometimes represented, the harbour 
of Monoecus opened to the south-west, it could not well be exposed to any 
wind blowing from the north. 

3 Where the doubtful coast extends) ver. 409. He probably alludes to the 
flat coast off Belgium and the present kingdom of Holland. 

* It is that the wind thus rolls) ver. 412. Pomponius Mela, in his Third 
Book, mentions the same three theories. The second is the right one. 

5 Waves of wandering Tethys) ver. 414. Tethys is a name very gene- 
rally given by the poets to the ocean. She was one of the most ancient of 
the Deities, and was the wife of Oceanus, daughter of Coslus and Vesta, and 
the foster-mother of Juno. 

6 The second of the heavenly bodies) ver. 413. " Sidere secundo." Un- 
der this name he refers to the moon, as being the next in apparent mag- 
nitude to the sun. 

7 Who occiipies the fields of Nemetis) ver. 419. The Nemetes, or Ne- 
metae, were a people of Gallia Belgica, on the Rhine. Their chief town 
was Noviomagus, afterwards Nemetae, on the site of the present Spires. 

8 The banks of the Aturus) ver. 420. The Aturus, or Atur, now called 
the Adour, was a river of Gallia Aquitanica, rising in the Pyrenees, and 
flowing through the territory of the Tarbelli into the ocean. 

9 Flowing by Tarbela) ver. 421. The city of the Tarbelli, who were a 



26 PHARSALIA. [B. L 422-427. 

standards, and the Santonian exults 1 , the enemy removed; 
the Biturigian 2 , too, and the active Suessones a with their 
long arms ; the Leucan 4 and the Rheman 9 , most adroit in 
extending the arm with tJie poised javelin ; the Sequanian 
race most adroit with the reins guided in the circle ; the 
Belgian, too 6 , the skilful guide of the scythed chariot 7 ; the 

powerful people of Gallia Aquitanica, lying between the ocean and the 
Pyrenees. Their chief town was ' Aquae Tarbellicae,' or ' AugusUe,' on 
the Atur or Adour. It is now called Dacqs. 

1 The Santonian exults) ver. 422. The Santoni, or Santones, were 
a nation of Gallia Aquitanica, dwelling near the ocean, to the north of the 
Garumua, or Garonne. Their chief town was called Mediolanum, after- 
wards Santones, now Salutes. 

2 The Biturigian, too) ver. 423. The Bituriges were a powerful people 
of Gallia Aquitanica. They were divided into the Bituriges Cubi, who in- 
habited the district now called Bourges, having Avaricum for their capital; 
and the Bituriges Vivisci, or Ubisci, on the Garonne, whose capital was 
Burdigala, now Bordeaux. 

3 And the active Suessones) ver. 423. The Suessones, or Suessiones, were 
a warlike nation of Gallia Belgica. Their king, Divitiacus, in the time of 
Caesar, was reckoned the most powerful chief in Gaul. They inhabited a 
fertile country to the west of the Rhine, and possessed twelve towns, of 
which the capital was Noviodunum, afterwards Augusta Suessonum, or 
Suessones, now Soissons. They were noted for the height of their stature, 
and the length of their spears and shields. 

4 The Leucan) ver. 424. The Leuci were a people in the south-east of 
Gallia Belgica, between the rivers Matrona and Mosella. Their chief town 
was Tullum, now Toul. 

And the Kheman) ver. 424. The Remi, or Rhemi, were a very power- 
ful people of Gallia Belgica, lying to the east of the Suessones and the 
JBellovaci. They formed an alliance with Caesar, when the rest of the 
Belgae made war against him, B.C. 57. Their chief town was Durocortornm, 
afterwards called Remi, now Rheims. From the expression " optimus 
excusso lacerto," it appears that the Rhemi were especially famed for their 
skill in the use of the javelin. 

' The Belgian, too) ver. 426. The Belgae formed one of the three great 
peoples into which Caasar divides the population of Gaul. They were 
bounded on the north by the Rhine, on the west by the ocean, on the south 
by the Sequana or Seine and the Matrona or Marne, and on the east by 
the territory of the Treviri. They were of German origin, and had settled 
in the country, on dispossessing the former inhabitants. Though mentioned 
here separately from the Nervii, Remi, and Suessones, all the latter were 
really tribes of the Belgae. 

7 Skilful guide of the scythed chariot) ver. 426. " Rostrati covini." 
The " covinus" was a kind of chariot much in use among the Belgae and 
the ancient Britons. Its spokes were armed with long scythes, which are here 
referred to in the epithet " rostrati," literally " beaked." From the Romans 
having designated a covered travelling carriage by the same name, it is 



B. i. 427-431.] PHARSALIA. 27 

Arverni, likewise 1 , who have presumed to pretend them- 
selves 2 of Latian brotherhood, descended from the race 
of the people of Ilium ; the Nervian, also 3 , too fatally re- 
bellious 4 , and denied by the broken treaty with the slaugh- 
tered Cotta ; the Vangiones, too fl , who imitate thee, Sarma- 
tian, with the loosely-flowing trowsers 6 ; the fierce Batavians, 

supposed that the " covinus " was covered on all sides except the front, and 
that it was occupied by one person only, the " covinarius," or driver of the 
chariot. We learn from Tacitus, that the " covinarii " constituted a regular 
part of the British army. 

1 The Arverni, likewise) ver. 427. The Arverni were a powerful nation of 
Celtica, and, in the time of Caesar, the rivals of the .ZEdui for the supre- 
macy. They are supposed to have possessed a large portion of the high 
lands of central France, in the valley of the Allier. Their territory gave its 
name to the modem Auvergne. 

2 Who have presumed to pretend themselves) ver. 427. It has been 
suggested that either this remark is a mistake of the Poet, or that he simply 
alludes to the pride of the Arverni before they were conquered by the 
Romans, whose equals they considered themselves to be. It has been, how- 
ever, supposed by some that the Arverni really did claim descent from Antenor, 
the Trojan. One of the Scholiasts says that a Trojan named Alvernus founded 
the colony, and that Cicero makes mention of them in the words " In- 
venti sunt qui etiam fratres populi Romani vocarentur." " There have 
been found some who were even called the brothers of the Roman people." 
This passage, however, is to be found in none of the fragments of Cicero's 
works which have come down to us. 

3 The Nervian, also) ver. 429. The Nervii were a warlike people of 
Gallia Belgica, whose territory extended from the river Sabis (now Sambre) 
to the ocean, and part of which was covered by the forest of Arduenna 
or Ardennes. They were divided into several smaller tribes, the Centrones, 
Grudii, Levaci, Pleumoxii, and Geiduni. 

4 Too fatally rebellious) ver. 429. He alludes to the fete of Q. Aurun- 
culeius Cotta, an officer in the army of Julius Caesar. He and Q. Titurius 
Sabinus had the command of one legion and four cohorts, with which they 
took up their position in the territory of the Eburones. Listening to the 
advice of Sabinus, he was drawn into an ambuscade by Ambiorix and Cati- 
volcus, on which they, with the greater part of their soldiers, were cut to 
pieces. 

5 The Vangiones, loo) ver. 431. The Vangiones were a people of Ger- 
many, in the neighbourhood of the modern Worms. 

' With the loosely-flowing trowsers) ver. 430. Ovid, speaking of the 
people of Tomi, in Thrace, bordering on Sannatia, refers to this peculiarity 
in their dress. In the Tristia, B. iii. El. 10, 1. 19, he says " The in- 
habitants barely defend themselves from the cold by skins and sewn trow- 
sers." And again, in B. v. El. 10, 1. 34, he says " Even those who are 
supposed to derive their origin from the Grecian city, the Persian trowsers 
cover instead of the dress of their country ;" and in B. iv. El. 6, 1. 47 
" Here there is a Scythian multitude, and crowds of the Getae, wearing 



28 PHARSALIA. [a 1.431 -439. 

too 1 , whom the harsh-sounding trumpets of crooked brass 2 
inflame to war; where Cinga flows around 3 with its tide; 
where the Rhone bears to the sea the Arar 4 , swept along 
with its impetuous waves ; where the race dwells upon the 
heights on the mountain summits, the Gebennse precipi- 
tous 5 with their snow-white crags. [The Pictones, left at 
liberty , cultivate their fields 7 ; and no more does the camp 
pitched around keep in check the fickle Turones ". The 
Andian disdaining, Meduana 9 , to pine amid thy fogs, is 

trowsers." The following nations are read of in ancient times as wearing 
"braccae," or "trowsers:" the Medes and Persians, the Parthians, the 
Phrygians, the Sacae, the Sannatians, the Dacians, the Getae, the Gauls, 
the Britons, the Belgae, and the Teutones. 

1 The fierce Bataviaiu, too) ver. 431. The Batavi were a people who in- 
habited the country between the Maas and the Waal, at the mouth of the 
Rhine, now Holland. Their country was first styled " Insula Batavorum," 
and at a later period Batavia. Their chief towns were Batavodurum and 
Lugdunum, now Leyden. These people were long the allies of the Romans 
in their wars against the Germans, and were of great service by means of 
their excellent cavalry. 

3 Harsh-sounding trumpets of crooked brass) ver. 432. The "tuba" 
or trumpet of the Roman armies was straight, while the " cornu " and the 
" lituus " were curved. Probably the peculiarity of the " tubae " of the 
Batavi was, that while they preserved the sound of the " tuba," they had 
the form of the " cornu." 

* Where Cinga flows around) ver. 432. Cinga, now Cinca, a river of 
Hispania Tarraconensis, rising in the Pyrenees, falling with the Sicoris into 
the Iberus, or Ebro. 

* Bears to the sea the Arar) ver. 433. The Arar, now the Saone, is a 
river of Gaul, which, rising in the Vosges, flows into the Rhodanus or 
Rhone, at Lugdunum or Lyons. 

* The Gebennce preeipitous) ver. 435. Gebennae, or Cebenna Mons, was 
the range of mountains now called the Cevennes, situate in the middle of 
Gaul, extending northwards to Lugdunum or Lyons, and separating the 
Arverni from the Helvii. 

T/ie Pictones, left at liberty) ver. 436. This and the next five lines are 
generally looked upon as spurious. According to some, they were first found 
by Cujacius ; but Cortius says, that the report was, that Marbodus An- 
dinus, the Bishop of Rennes, inserted these verses in the Poem to gratify his 
countrymen. 

7 Cultivate their field*) ver. 436. The Pictones, who were afterwards 
called the Pictavi, were a powerful people on the coast of Gallia Aquitanica. 
Their chief town was Limonum, subsequently called Pictavi, now Poitiers. 

Keep the fickle Turones) ver. 437. The Turones, Turoni, or Turonii, 
were a people in the interior of Gallia Lugdunensis. Their chief town was 
Caesarodunum, subsequently Turoni, now Tours. 

Meduana) ver. 438. A river of Gaul, flowing into the Ligeris, now 
called the Mayne. 



B. i. 439-444.] PHARSALIA. 29 

now refreshed by the placid stream of Liger 1 ; from the 
squadrons of Csesar renowned Genabos 2 is set free.] 

Thou, too, Trevirian a , overjoyed that the course of warfare 
is turned back; and thou, Ligurian 4 , now shorn, in former 
times with thy locks hanging adown thy graceful neck, 
preferred to the whole of long-haired Gaul 6 ; those, too, by 
whom the relentless Teutates 8 is appeased by direful 
bloodshed, and Hesus, dreadful 7 with his merciless altars ; 
and the shrine of Taranis 8 , not more humane than that 
of Scythian Diana 9 . You, too, ye Bards 10 , who, as poets, 
hand down hi your praises to remote ages spirits valiant, 

1 Stream of Liger) ver. 439. Liger, orLigeris, now the Loire, is one of 
the largest rivers of France, and rises in the Cevennes. 

2 Renowned Genabos) ver. 440. Genabum, or Cenabum, was a town 
of Gallia Lugdunensis, on the north bank of the Ligeris, and the chief town 
of the Carnutes ; it was plundered and burnt by Csesar, but was afterwards 
rebuilt. The present city of Orleans stands on its site. 

3 Thou, too, Trevirian) ver. 441. The Treviri were a powerful nation of 
Gallia Belgica, and were faithful allies of the Romans. They were famous 
for the excellence of their cavalry. Their territory lay to the eastward of 
that of the Rhemi, and the Mosella flowed through it. Their chief town 
was made a Roman colony by Augustus, and was called Augusta Trevi- 
rorum, now Trier, or Treves. 

4 And thou, Ligurian) ver. 442. The Ligurian tribes were divided by 
the Romans into the Ligures Transalpini and Cisalpini. Those who inhabited 
the Maritime Alps were called " Capillati," or " Comati," from the custom 
of wearing their hair long. 

s The long-haired Gaul) ver. 443. " Gallia Comata" was the name given 
to that part of Gaul which was the last conquered by the Romans, and re- 
ceived its name from the inhabitants continuing to wear their hair long and 
flowing, while the other nations of Gallia Cisalpina had adopted the Roman 
manners. 

6 The relentless Teutates) ver. 445. Teutas, or Teutates, is supposed to 
have been the name of a Gallic Divinity corresponding to the Roman Mer- 
cury. Human victims were offered to him. 

7 And Hesus, dreadful) ver. 445. Hesus was the Mars of the Gauls, and 
to him the prisoners taken in battle were sacrificed. 

8 The shrine of Taranis) ver. 446. Taranis is supposed to have been the 
Jupiter of the Celtic nations. 

9 That of Scythian Diana) ver. 446. He alludes to the worship of Diana at 
Tauris in Scythia, where, by order of Thoas, the king, all strangers were slain 
and sacrificed to the Gods. Iphigenia was her priestess, and narrowly escaped 
sacrificing her own brother Orestes. See the story related in the Tristia of 
Ovid, B. ii. El. 2, p. 425 of the Translation in Eohn's Classical Library. 

10 You too, Bards) ver. 449. The " IBardi " were the Poets of Gaul and 
Germany, whose province it was to sing the praises of their chieftains and 
of the heroes who had died in combat. 



80 PHAESALIA. [B. i. 44^-464. 

and cut off in war, freed from alarm, did then pour forth full 
many a strain ; and you, Druids 1 , after arms were laid aside, 
sought once again your barbarous ceremonials and the ruth- 
less usages of your sacred rites. To you alone * has it been 
granted to know the Gods and the Divinities of heaven, or 
alone to know that they do not exist. In remote forests do 
you inhabit the deep glades. On your authority :t the shades 
seek not the silent abodes of Erebus, and the pallid realms 
of Pluto 4 in the depths below ; the same spirit controls other 
limbs in another world 5 ; death is the mid space in a pro- 
longed existence, if you sing what is ascertained as truth. 
Assuredly the nations whom the Northern Bear looks down 
upon are happy in their error, whom this, the very greatest 
of terrors, does not move, the fear of death. Thence have 
the people spirits ever ready to rush to arms, and souls 
that welcome death ; and they deem it cowardice to be sparing 
of a life destined to return. You, too, stationed to prevent 
the Cauci 6 , with then- curling locks, from warfare, repair to 

1 And you, Druids) ver. 451. The " Druidae," or Druids, were the high- 
priests of the Gauls, and performed many mysterious rites. By " positia 
armis," the Foet does not mean that they wielded arms, but that after arms 
were laid aside in Gaul by reason of the civil wars, they resumed thair super- 
stitious practices, which had been checked by Caesar. Caesar says, in his 
Gallic War, B. vi. ch. 14 " The Druids do not go to war, nor do they pay 
tribute together with the rest." 

9 To you alone) ver. 453. The meaning seems to be, " To you alone is 
it granted to know the mysteries of the Gods, or the fact that there are 
no Gods." 

3 On, your authority) ver. 454. The meaning is, that the Druids taught 
the doctrine of the immortality of the soul. 

4 The pallid realms of Pluto) ver. 455. Dis wa an epithet of Pluto, 
the king of Erebus, or the infernal regions. 

4 In another world) ver. 457. " Orbe alio " may mean simply " in 
another region " of the earth ; but it most probably refers to the idea preva- 
lent with those who taught the doctrine of the transmigration of the soul, that 
it animated various bodies in the stars in a certain cycle or routine. The 
doctrine of the Druids differed from that of Pythagoras, who is said, but 
upon very slender authority, to have derived his notions on this subject 
from them. The Druids believed that the soul passed from man into man 
alone ; while Pythagoras thought that on leaving the human body it passed 
into the bodies of various animals in succession. 

* To prevent the Cauci) ver. 464. The Cauci, Cayci, or Chauci, were a 
powerful people in the north-east of Germany, whose country was divided 
by the Visurgis or Weser. Tacitus describes them as the noblest and most 
courageous of the German tribes. In the use of the word " cirrigeros," he 



B. i. 464-487.] PHARSALIA. 31 

Borne, and desert the savage banks of the Ehine, and the 
world now laid open to the nations. 

Csesar, when his immense resources, with their collected 
strength, had created confidence for daring still greater 
things, spread throughout all Italy, and filled the neigh- 
bouring fortified towns 1 . Idle rumours, too, were added 
to well-founded fears, and burst upon the feelings of the 
public, and presented to them the destined slaughter, and, 
a swift forerunner of the hastening warfare, let loose tongues 
innumerable to false alarms. Some there are who, where 
Mevania displays itself 2 in the plains that rear the bulls, 
aver that the audacious squadrons are pushing onward to 
the combat, and that, where Nar flows 3 on to the stream of 
Tiber, the barbarian troops of the ruthless Caesar are spread- 
ing far and wide; that he himself, leading all his eagles 
and his collected standards, is advancing with no single 
column, and with a camp densely thronged. And not such 
as they remember him do they now behold him ; both more 
terrible and relentless does he seem to their imaginations, 
and more inhuman than the conquered foe 4 . That after 
him the nations lying between the Rhine and the Alps, 
torn from the Arctic regions and from their paternal homes, 
are following close, and that the City has been ordered, a 
Roman looking on, to be sacked by barbarous tribes. 

Thus, by his fears, does each one give strength to 
rumour; and no one the author of their woes, what they 
have invented they dread. And not alone is the lower 
class alarmed, smitten by a groundless terror ; but the Senate 

alludes to the custom of the German nations of wearing the hair long and 
curling. 

1 Filled the neighbouring fortified towns) ver. 468. We' learn from 
Caesar's Civil War, B. L c. 11, 12, that the next places which he took 
after Ariminum, were Arretium, Pisaurus, Fanum, Iguvium, and Auximum. 

2 Mevania displays itself) ver. 473. This was an ancient city in the 
interior of Umbria, on the river Tinea. It was situate on the road from 
Borne to Ancona, and was very strongly fortified. The Clitumnus was a 
river in the neighbourhood, famous for a breed of white oxen fed on its 
banks. 

3 And where Nar flows) ver. 475. This was a river of Central Italy, on 
the frontiers of Umbria and Picenum. Passing by Interamna and Narnia, it 
fell into the Tiber, not far from Ocriculum. 

4 More inhuman than the conquered foe) ver. 480. Namely, the Gauls 
and the Britons. 



82 PHAR3ALIA. [B. i. 487-514. 

house, and the Fathers themselves rush forth from their 
seats, and the Senate taking to flight gives its hateful de- 
crees * for the warfare into the charge of the Consuls. Then 
uncertain what to seek as safe, and what to leave as worthy 
to he feared, whither the anxiety for flight directs each one, 
it urges the populace headlong, and the throng, connected in 
one long line, bursts forth. 

You would suppose either that accursed torches had set 
fire to the abodes, or that now, the ruins shaking, the 
nodding houses were tottering to their fall ; thus does the 
panic-stricken multitude at random rush throughout the City 
with precipitate steps, as though there had been but one 
hope hi their ruined fortunes, to desert their paternal 
walls. Just as, when the stormy south wind has repulsed 
from the Libyan Syrtes the boundless ocean, and the 
broken mass of the sail-bearing mast has sent forth its 
crash, and the pilot, the ship deserted, leaps into the waves, 
the seaman, too, and thus, the structure of the vessel not yet 
torn asunder, each one makes a shipwreck for himself ; so 
the City forsaken, do they fly unto the warfare. The parent, 
now weakened with old age, was able to call no one back 2 ; 
nor yet the wife her husband with her tears ; nor did the 
household Lares detain them, while they were breathing 
prayers for their safety thus doubtful; nor did any one 
pause at the threshold, and then, filled with perhaps his 
last glimpse of the beloved City, take his departure ; not 
to be called back, the crowd rushes on. 

Deities, ready to grant supreme prosperity, and loth 
to preserve the same ! The cowardly throngs left the City a 

1 Oives its hateful decrees) ver. 489. Speaking of this crisis, Caesar 
says, in the Civil War, B. i. ch. 5 " Recourse was had to that extreme 
and formal decree of the Senate" (which was never resorted to even by daring 
proposers except when the City was in danger of being set on fire, or when 
the public safety was despaired of), " that the Consuls, Praetors, Tribunes of 
the people, and Proconsuls in the City, should take care that the State re- 
ceived no detriment." Of course these decrees would be odious to the parti- 
zans of Caesar. 

2 Was able to call no one lack) ver. 505. There is a similar passage in 
the Tristia of Ovid, B. i. El. B, 1. 54, where, describing the night of his 
leavisic Rome in banishment, he says : " Thrice did I touch the threshold ; 
thrice was I called back, and my lingering foot itself paused indulgent to 
my feelings ; often, having bade him farewell, did I again give utterance to 
many a word and, as if now departing, I gave the last kiss." 



B. I. 515-538.] PHARSALIA. 33 

prey on Caesar's approach, filled with the people and with 
conquered nations, and able to hold the human race, if the 
multitude were collected together. When, hi foreign re- 
gions, the Eoman soldier, pressed by the foe, is hemmed in, 
he escapes the dangers of the night by a simple trench ; 
and the rampart suddenly formed with the protection of 
some clods torn up affords secure slumbers within the 
tents. Thou Rome, on the name only of war being heard 
art being deserted ; a single night has not been trusted to 
thy walls. 

Still, pardon must be granted, yes, must be granted for 
alarms thus great. Pompey flying, they were in dread 1 . 
Besides, that even no hope in the future might cheer 
their failing spirits, there was added the disclosed assurance 
of a still worse future, and the threatening Gods of heaven 
filled with prodigies the earth, the seas, the skies. The 
gloomy nights beheld stars unknown, and the sky burn- 
ing with flames, and torches flying obliquely through the 
expanse along the heavens, and the train of a fear-inspiring 
meteor, and a comet threatening tyranny to the earth *. 
Incessant hghtnings flashed in the deceptive clear sky, and 
the fire described various forms in the dense atmosphere ; 
now a javelin, with a prolonged flame, and now a torch, 
with a scattered light, flashed in the heavens. Lightning in 
silence without any clouds, and bringing its fires from the 
Arctic regions 3 , smote the Capital of Latium 4 ; the lesser 
stars, too, that were wont to speed onwards in the still 
hours of the night, came in the middle of the day; and, 
*her horns closed, when Phoebe was now reflecting her 

1 Pompey flying, they were in dread) ver. 522. According to Caesar, 
Civil War, B. i. ch. 14, Pompey left the City on his road to the legions 
which he had placed in winter quarters in Apulia. 

2 Threatening tyranny to the earth) ver. 529. By its appearance threaten- 
ing tyranny to the earth ; such as it had suffered under Marius and Sulla. 

3 From the Arctic regions) ver. 534. This was considered portentous 
of ill, inasmuch as lightning was supposed generally to proceed from the 
south. 

4 The Capital of Latium) ver. 535. By " Latiale caput " some un- 
derstand Home, as being the chief city of Latium. It is not Improbable that 
the Temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill is meant. Jupiter Latialis is 
mentioned in 1. 198. 

D 



34 PHARSALIA. [B. L 538-554. 

brother on her whole orb, struck by the sudden shadow of 
the earth she turned pale. Titan himself, when he was 
raising his head in mid Olympus, concealed his glowing 
chariot in dense darkness, and enwrapped the earth in 
shade, and forced the nations to despair of day ; just as, 
the Sun retreating by the east, Mycenae of Thyestes brought 
on the night 1 . 

Grim Mulciber opened the mouths of Sicilian Etna 2 ; 
nor did it raise its flames to the heavens, but with its crest 
bending low the flame fell downwards on the Hesperian 
side. The black Charybdis stirred up from her depths sea 
of the colour of blood ; the. savage dogs barked in dismal 
tones. The fire was torn from the Vestal altars ; and the 
flame that showed that the Latin rites 3 were completed was 
divided into two parts, and rose with a twofold point, re- 
sembling the funeral piles of Thebes 4 . Then did the Earth 
withdraw from her axis, and, their ridges quaking, the Alps 
shook off their ancient snows. With billows more mighty 

1 Mycence of Thyestes brought on the night) ver. 544. Atrens and 
Thyestes, the sons of Pelops and: Hippodamia, slew their half-brother 
Chrysippus. Thyestes having seduced JErope, the wife of Atrens, sent 
Pleisthenes, the son of Atreus. whom he had brought up, to murder his 
lather, on which Atreus, supposing him to be the son of Thyestes, slew him. 
According to another version of the story, which is the one here referred to, 
Atreus, feigning a reconciliation, invited Thyestei to his kingdom, and 
killed and dressed the bodies of Tantalus and Pleisthenes, the sons of Thy- 
estes, and, while his brother was enjoying the meal, had their hands and 
heads brought in and shown to him, on which Thyestes fled to the court of 
Thesprotus. The Sun is said to have hid his face in horror, and turned back 
in his course, on seeing this transaction. 

2 Opened the mouths of Sicilian Etna) ver. 545. This is a poetical 
method of stating that there was an eruption of Etna at this period. 
Mulciber was a name of Vnlcan, derived from " mulcco " " to soften," from 
his being the inventor of working iron. 

3 Showed that the Latin rites) ver. 550. The festival called " Latinrc 
feriae," or simply " Latinae," was performed in honour of Jupiter Latialis 
on the Alban Mount, when an ox was sacrificed there by night: multi- 
tudes flocked thither, and the season was one of great rejoicings and 
feasting. 

4 Resembling the funeral piles of Thebes) ver. 552. Eteocles and Pbly- 
nices, the Theban brothers, sons of (Edipus, having slain each other in 
combat, their bodies were burnt on the same funeral pile, bnt their animosity 
was said to have survived in death, and the flames refused to unite. 



B. i. 555-564.] PHARSALIA. 35 

Tethys did overwhelm Hesperian Calpe ' and the heights of 
Atlas*. We have heard how that the native Deities a wept,, 
and how with sweat the Lares attested the woes of the Ciky, 
how, too, that the presented gifts fell down in their Temples, 
and hirds of ill omen 4 polluted the day; and how that 
the wild heasts, emboldened, the woods at nightfall deserted, 
made their lairs in the midst of Rome. Then were the 
tongues of cattle adapted to human accents; monstrous 
births, too, there were, of human beings, both as to the num- 
ber and the formation of the limbs, and her own infant struck 
the mother with horror; the fatal lines , too, of the Pro- 

1 Hesperian Calpe) ver. 555. The rock of Gibraltar in Hesperia, or 
Spain, which was also called the Columns of Hercules. 

5 The heights of Atlas) ver. 555. Atlas was the name of a mountain 
range in the north-west of Africa, situate between the Mediterranean and 
the Great Desert, now called the Desert of Sahara. 

3 The native Deities) ver. 556. The " Dii Indigetes " were those 
Gods of the Romans who were supposed to have once lived on earth as 
mortals, and were after their death raised to the rank of Gods, such as 
Janus, Faunus, Picus, JEneas, Evander, Hercules, Latinus, and Romulus. 
Some take them to have been only such Deities as took part in the foundation 
of Rome, as Mars, Venas, Vesta, and others ; while others think that they 
were those whose worship was introduced into Latium from Troy. 

4 And birds of ill omen) ver. 558. He probably means screech-owls 
and bats, which were considered birds of ill omen. 

5 Tongues of cattle adapted) ver. 561. Livy and Valerius Maximus tell 
us that an ox spoke and warned Rome of the disasters which would ensue 
on Hannibal's arrival in Italy. We learn from one of the Scholiasts that 
in these Civil Wars an ass spoke. Another informs us that an ox spoke when 
ploughing, in reproof of his driver, and told him that it was useless to 
urge him on, for soon there would be no people left in Italy to consume the 
produce of the fields. 

6 The fatal lines) ver. 564. He alludes to the Prophecies of the Sibyl ; 
a name given to several mysterious personages of antiquity, of whom 
ten are mentioned by Varro. The one here alluded to, resided at Cumae, 
on the sea-coast of Italy. Erythrea was her usual name, but she is 
sometimes called Herophile, Daphne, Deiphobe, Manto, &c. Apollo granted 
her a life to equal in the years of its duration the grains contained in a 
handful of sand. Forgetting to add to her request the enjoyment of health 
and strength, decrepitude and infirmity became her lot as her years ad- 
vanced. There was another Sibyl of Cumse in 2Etolia, who is represented 
as a different personage from the former. According to the Scholiasts, 
Lucan here alludes to a prophecy of the Sibyl couched under the follow- 
ing letters : R.R.R. P.P.P.P. F.F.F., which was said to mean " Romanum 
ruitregnum, Pompeius, pater patriae, pellitur ferro, flamma, fame." "The 
Roman state comes to ruin, Pompey, the father of his country, is expelled 

D 2 



36 PHARSALIA. [B. i. 564-576. 

phetess of Cumae were repeated among the populace. Then 
did those, whom with their hacked arms the savage Bellona 
inspires *, sing of the Gods enraged ; and tossing their blood- 
stained hair, the Galli howled forth 2 sad accents to the throng. 
Urns filled with bones laid at rest sent forth groans. 

Then arose the crash of arms, and loud voices were heard 
amid the remote parts of the groves, and ghosts came nigh 
to men*. Those, too, who till the fields adjacent to the extre- 
mities of the walls, fled in all directions ; the mighty Erinnys 
was encompassing the City about, shaking her pitch-tree 
torch down-turned with flaming top, and her hissing locks ; 
such as when the Fury impelled the Theban Agave 4 , or 
whirled in air the weapons of the savage Lycurgus'; or such 

by sword, flames, and hunger." According to one account a frantic woman 
ran through the streets of Rome calling out these initial letters. For a 
full account of the Sibyls see the Translation of Ovid's Metamorphoses, in 
Bohris Classical Library, p. 484 et seq. 

1 The savage Bellona inspires) ver. 565. Bellona, the Goddess of war, 
was probably a Sabine divinity, and is represented as the companion of 
Mars, sometimes as his sister or his wife. Her priests at Rome, to whom 
reference is here made, were called " Bellonarii," and when they offered 
sacrifice to her they wounded their own arms and legs, and offered up 
the blood, and sometimes even drank thereof, that they might become in- 
spired with a warlike enthusiasm. This sacrifice was performed on the 24th 
of March, which was thence called "Dies sanguinis," "the Day of blood." 

2 The Galli howled forth) ver. 567. The Galli were eunuch priests of 
Cybele, whose worship was introduced into Rome from Phrygia, B.C. 204. 
Their wild and boisterous rites are here referred to, and, like the priests of 
Bellona, they were in the habit of mutilating their own bodies. The origin 
of their name is uncertain, but it was most probably derived from the river 
Gallus in Phrygia, which flowed near the temple of Cybele. One of the 
Scholiasts says, that to insult the Galli, after the conquest of Gaul, Caesar 
had some persons castrated and shut up in the temple of Cybele. Papias 
relates the same story. 

3 Ghosts came nigh to men) ver. 570. " Venientes cominus umbrae."* 
It has been suggested that this passage means that the shadows of the body 
ominously fell in front at a time when they ought to have fallen behind. 
The translation given in the text is, however, the preferable one. 

* Impelled the Theban Agave) ver. 574. Pentheus having forbidden the 
people to worship Bacchus, and, having ordered him to be captured, his mother 
Agave and the other Bacchantes became inspired by the Furies and tore 
him to pieces. See the Metamorphoses of Ovid, Book vii. 1. 510, et seq. 

5 T/ie weapons of the savage Lycurgus) ver. 575. Lycurgus, king of 
Thrace, having denied the Divinity of Bacchus, was punished with insanity, 
on which he slew his own wife and child, and cut off his own legs, mistaking 
them for vine branches. According to one account he was murdered by his 



B. i. 576-585.] PHARSALIA. 37 

as, when, by the command of the unjust Juno, Pluto now 
visited, Alcides shuddered at Megsera 1 . Trumpets re- 
sounded, and black night, amid the silent shades, sent forth 
an uproar as loud as that with which the cohorts are min- 
gled in combat. The shade of Sulla, too, seeming to arise in 
the middle of the Plain of Mars 2 , uttered ill-boding prophe- 
cies ; and the husbandmen fled from Marius raising his head 
at the cold waves of Anio 3 , his sepulchre burst asunder. 

By reason of these things it seemed good that, according 
to the ancient usage, the Etrurian prophets 4 should be 

subjects, who were forbidden by an oracle to taste wine till he had been 
dispatched, while another version states that he was slain by the panthers 
sacred to Bacchus. The fates of Pentheus and Lycurgus are mentioned in 
conjunction, in the Fasti of Ovid, B. iii. 1. 721-2. " Thon also, unhappy 
prey of thy Theban mother, shalt remain unmentioned ; thou too, Lycurgus, 
impelled by madness to assail thy own knee." 

1 Alcides shuddered at Megcera) ver. 577. He alludes to a tradition 
relative to Hercules, which stated that when he had returned from the In- 
fernal Regions, he was seized with madness, which Megaera, the chief of the 
Furies, had, by the command of Juno, his relentless persecutor, sent upon 
him ; on which he slew Megara, the daughter of Creon (who had been his 
wife, and whom he had given to lolaus), and her children by lolaiis. This 
madness was inflicted upon him for having slain Lycus, king of Thebes. 
Hercules was called Alcides, probably from the Greek word, k\*ot, strength. 

9 In the middle of the Plain of Mars) ver 581. After the death of 
Sulla the Senate paid him the honor of a public funeral, and, with the 
Priests, Vestal Virgins, and Equites, accompanied the funeral procession to 
the Campus Martius, where, according to the express desire of the deceased, 
his body was burnt, as he feared that his enemies might insult his remains, 
as he had done those of Marius, which had been taken out of the grave and 
thrown into the Anio at his command. This circumstance was the more 
striking, as it had been previously the custom of the Cornelian family, of 
which he was a member, to bury and not burn their dead. A monument 
was erected to him in the Campus Martius, the inscription on which he is 
said to have composed himself. It stated that none of his friends ever did 
him a service, and none of his enemies a wrong, without being fully repaid. 

3 The cold loaves of Anio) ver. 582. The Anio was a small stream 
which ran into the Tiber. In using the word " fracto," " burst asunder," 
the Poet probably alludes to the circumstance above-mentioned, of the viola- 
tion of his tomb by the orders of the vengeful Sulla. 

4 The Etrurian prophets) ver. 584. The Romans received their supersti- 
tions relative to augury and soothsaying from Etruria, which was always fa- 
mous for the skill of its natives in those branches, and was for many centuries 
the nursery of the Roman priesthood. Ovid says, in the Metamorphoses, 
B. xv. 1. 559, that Tages, who was fabled to have sprung out of the earth, was 
the first to teach the Etrurian nation how to foretell future events. See 1. 637 
of this Book, and the Translation in Bohn's Classical Library, p. 543. 



88 PHABSALIA. [B. i. 585-599. 

summoned. Of whom, Aruns, the one most stricken in 
years, inhabited the walls of deserted Luca 1 , well-skilled 
in the movements of the lightnings, and the throbbing 
veins of the entrails, and the warnings of the -whig 2 hover- 
ing in the air. In the first place he orders the monsters, 
which revolting nature has produced from no seed, to be 
seized, and then bids them burn the accursed progeny of the 
barren womb in ill-omened flames 3 . Then next he orders 
the whole City to be perambulated by the trembling citi- 
zens, and the priests, who purify the walls at the festive lus- 
trum, to whom is granted the power to perform the rite, to 
go round about the lengthened spaces without the walls *, 
at the extreme boundaries. The inferior throng follows, 
tightly girt in the Gabinian fashion 5 , and the filleted priestess 
leads the Vestal choir, to whom alone it is permitted to 
behold the Trojan Minerva", l^ext, those who have charge 

1 Deserted Luca) ver. 586. Luca, now Lucca, was a lognrian city in 
upper Italy, at the foot of the Apennines. Luna is another reading here ; 
it was a town of Etruria, situate on the left bank of the Macra, about four 
miles from the sea-shore. It was famed for its white marble, which now 
takes its name from the neighbouring town of Carrara. The character of 
Aruns here mentioned is probably a fabulous one, invented by the Poet. 

* Warnings of the wing) ver. 588. Auspices wre derived from the 
flight and from the voice of birds. Those which afforded the former were 
called " Prsepetes," those which gave the latter were called " Oscines." 

3 In ill-omened flames) ver. 591. Infaustie flammis. One of the Scho- 
liasts tells us that those flames were called " infaustae " which were kindled 
from wood which had been struck by lightning, or which had been used in 
burning the dead. 

4 Spaces without ike ttulls) ver. 594. Pornceria. This word is probably 
compounded of "post" and " moerium," the old name for " a wall," and sig- 
nified a space of ground adjoining the city walls. The limits of the 
Pomcerium were marked out by stone pillars at certain distances. The 
Pomoerium was probably described to denote the space within which the 
City auspices were to be taken. 

5 In the Gabinian. fashion) ver. 596. According to Servius, the " Cinctus 
Gabinius" was formed by girding the toga tight round the body by one of its 
" laciniiE," or loose ends. This was done by forming a part of the toga into 
3 girdle, drawing its outer edge round the body, and tying it in a knot in 
the front, at the same time that the head was covered with another portion of 
the garment The Lares were generally represented in the Gabinian habit. 

* To behold the Trojan Jf inertia) ver. 598. He alludes to the Palladium 
or image of Minerva which had been brought by JEneas from Troy, and was 
deposited in the Temple of Vesta nnder the care of the Vestal Virgins, who 
alone were permitted to look upon it. 



B. i. 599-603.] PHARSALIA. 89 

of the decrees of the Gods and the mystic prophecies, 
and who reconduct Cybele, when bathed, from the little 
Almo 1 : the Augur, too, skilled in observing the birds on the 
left hand; and the Septemvir 2 , joyous at the festivals, and 
the fellowship of the Titii 3 , the Salian, likewise 4 , carrying 

1 When bathed from the little Almo) ver. 600. It was a yearly custom 
with the Komans to wash the statue of the Goddess Cybele and her chariot 
in the waters of the Almo, a small river near Rome. Ovid mentions this 
practice in the Fasti, B. iv. 1. 338, et seq. " There is a spot where the rapid 
Almo flows into the Tiber, and the lesser stream loses its name in that of 
the greater. There does the hoary priest, in his purple vestments, lave the 
lady Goddess and her sacred utensils in the waters of the Almo." One 
of the Scholiasts says that there was a river of the same name in Phrygia, 
whence the worship of Cybele was brought. This line is by some thought to 
be spurious. In the previous line the Poet alludes to the " Quindecimviri," 
or " Fifteen," whose duty it was to preserve the Sibylline books, which 
were supposed to reveal the destinies of Borne. Their number was originally 
two, next ten, and by Sulla they were increased to fifteen. 

2 And the Septemvir) ver. 602. " Septemvir." He alludes to the " Sep- 
temviri Epulones," who were originally three in number, and whose office 
was first instituted in the year B.C. 196. Their duty was, to attend to the 
" Epulum Jovis," or " Feast of Jove," and the banquets, or " lectisternia," 
given in honor of the other Gods ; a duty which had originally belonged to 
the Pontifices. Julius Caesar added three to their number, but they were 
afterwards reduced to seven. They formed a Collegium, and were ene of 
the four religious corporations of Borne, the other three being those of the 
Pontilices, Augures, and Quindecimviri. 

3 Fellowship of the Titii) ver. 602. The " Titii Sodales" formed a College 
of priests at Borne, who represented the Titii or second tribe of the Bomans, 
which was descended from the Sabines, and continued to perform their 
ancient rites. This body is said to have been instituted by Titus Tatius, the 
king of the Sabines, who reigned jointly with Romulus. According to 
Tacitus, it would seem that Bomulus made the worship of Tatius after his 
death a part of the Sabine sacred rites. Varro derives the name from 
" Titioe aves," the " Titian birds," which were observed by these priests in 
certain auguries, and it is not improbable that they kept the auguries peculiar 
to the Sabines distinct from those used by the other tribes. It is very 
doubtful whether the office of the " Titii Sodales," as the preservers of the 
Sabine ritual, was in existence in the time of Lucan. 

4 The Salian, likewise) ver. 603. The Salii were priests of Mars, who 
were instituted by Numa to keep the sacred shields or " ancilia ;" they re- 
ceived their name from " alio," to " leap" or "dance," because in the pro- 
cession round the City they danced with the shields suspended from their 
necks. Some writers say that they received their name from Salius, an Ar- 
cadian, a companion of jEneas, who taught the Italian youths to dance in 
armour. After the processions had lasted some days, the shields were 
replaced in the Temple of Mars. The dress of the Salii was an embroidered 
tunic, with a brazen belt, the " trabea," and the "apex," or tufted conical cap; 



40 PHARSALIA. [a i. 603-610. 

the ancilia 1 on his exulting neck; and the Flamen 2 , who 
wears the tuft 3 upon his noble head. 

And while in prolonged circuit they go round about the 
emptied City, Aruns collects the dispersed objects struck by 
flames of lightning, and with a lamenting murmur buries 
them in the earth, and bestows a name upon the conse- 
crated spots 4 . Then does he urge onward to the altar a 
male, with selected neck. Now had he begun to pour the 

each having a sword by his side, and a spear or staff in his hand, with 
which, while dancing, he struck the ancile, kept time with the voice and 
the movements of the dance. 

1 Carrying the ancilia) ver. 603. The "ancile" was a sacred shield, 
which was said to have fallen from heaven in the time of King Numa. To 
prevent its being stolen, as the destiny of the Roman state was supposed to 
depend on its preservation, Numa ordered a number of shields to be made by 
Mamurius exactly resembling it, in order that those having criminal designs 
might not be able to steal it. The "ancilia" were under the especial charge 
of the Salii. See the Fasti of Ovid, B. iii. 1. 363, ft teq. 

2 And the Flamen) ver. 604. The Flamens were priests who dedicated 
their services to one particular Deity, while the Pontifices offered sacrifice to 
all. The " Flamen Dialis," or " Flamen of Jupiter," held the highest office 
of the Roman priesthood, though his political influence was less than that of 
the " Pontifex Maximus." Among other privileges, that of having a lictor 
was one. 

3 Who wears the tuft) ver. 604. " Apicem." Under the name of " apex" 
he refers to a peculiar cap worn by the Flamens and Salii at Rome. That 
name, however, properly belonged to a pointed piece of olive wood, the 
base of which was surrounded with wool. This was held on the head by 
fillets or by a cap, which was fastened by two bands called " apicula," or 
" offendices." The cap was of a conical form, and was generally made of 
sheep-skin with the wool on; and from the "apex "on its summit it at 
length acquired that name. The Flamens were chosen from the higher 
classes; hence the present epithet "generoso." 

4 A name upon (tie consecrated spots) ver. 608. He alludes to the conse- 
cration of the "bidental." This was a name given to a place struck by 
lightning, which was held sacred ever afterwards. Similar veneration was 
also paid to a place where a person who had been killed by lightning was 
buried. Priests collected the earth that had been torn up, the branches 
broken off by the lightning, and everything that had been scorched, and 
buried them in the ground with lamentations. The spot was then consecrated 
by sacrificing a two-year old sheep, which being called "bidens," gave itt 
name to the place. An altar was also erected there, and it was not allowable 
to tread on the spot, or to touch it, or even to look at it. When the altar 
had fallen to decay, it might be repaired, but to enlarge its boundaries was 
deemed sacrilege, and madness was supposed to ensue on committing such 
an offence ; Seneca mentions a belief that wine which had been struck by 
lightning would produce death or madness in those who drank it. 



E. L 610-633.] PHAESALIA. 41 

wine, and to place on it the salted corn", with knife pointed 
downwards ; and long was the victim impatient of the rites 2 
not grateful to him; when the aproned attendants pressed 
upon the threatening horns, sinking on his knees he pre- 
sented his subdued neck. And no blood as usual spurted 
forth ; but from the gaping wound there was black venom, 
poured forth instead of ruddy gore. Astounded at the ill- 
omened rites Aruns turned pale, and sought the wrath 
of the Gods of heaven in the torn-out entrails. The very 
colour alarmed the prophet; for a pervading lividness 
streaked with spots of blood the pallid vitals, tinted with 
foul spots and gorged with congealed blood. He perceives 
the liver reeking with corruption, and beholds the veins 
threatening on the enemy's side 3 . The fibres of the pant- 
ing lungs lie concealed, and a narrow line separates the 
vital parts. The heart lies still ; and through gaping clefts 
the vitals emit corrupt matter; the cauls, too, disclose 
their retreats ; and, shocking sign ! that which has appeared 
with impunity in no entrails, lo ! he sees growing upon 
the head of the entrails the mass of another head 4 a part 
hangs weak and flabby, a part throbs and with a rapid 
pulsation incessantly moves the veins. 

When, by these means, he understood the fated allotment 
of vast woes, he exclaimed, " Hardly is it righteous, Gods of 
heaven, for me to disclose to the people what you warn 
me of! nor indeed, supreme Jupiter, have I propitiously 
offered unto thee 5 this sacrifice ; and into the breast of the 

1 The salted corn) ver. 610. The "mola," used in sacrifice, was a mix- 
ture of salt and spelt, which, together with wine, was poured between the 
horns of the victim before it was offered in sacrifice. " Obliquo cultro " 
seems to mean "with the knife pointed downwards," vertically, and not 
obliquely, which latter, however, is the more usual meaning of "obliquus." 

2 Impatient of the rites) ver. 611. For the victim to struggle when about 
to be sacrificed was considered an ill omen. 

3 On the enemy's side) ver. 622. In divining by the entrails, it was the 
custom for the priests to divide them into two portions ; one being assigned 
to those whom they favoured, the other to the enemy. In this instance the 
enemy's part, which was assigned to Caesar, was replete with appearances of 
the most fatal ominousness. 

4 Mass of another head) ver. 628. He finds a twofold portion of what they 
called the head of the liver. This, which was a portentous omen, was sup- 
posed to denote the increase of Caesar's prosperity at the expense of Pompey. 

4 Offered unto thee) ver. 633. He means that from the appearance of the 
victim it would seem as though he had not been sacrificing to Jupiter, but to 



42 PHAESALIA. [B. L 633-648. 

slaughtered bull have the infernal Deities entered ! Things 
not to be uttered do we dread; but things still greater than 
our apprehensions will come to pass. May the Gods grant 
a prosperous result to what has been seen, and may tkere 
be no truth in the entrails ; but rather may Tages, the foun- 
der of the art 1 , have fondly invented all these things ! " 
Thus did the Etrurian, obscuring the omens and conceal- 
ing them in much perplexing doubt, utter his prophecies. 

But Figulus 2 , to whom it was a care to know the Gods 
and the secrets of the heavens, whom not Egyptian Mem- 
phis* could equal in the science of the stars and hi the 
principles which regulate the heavenly bodies, exclaimed : 
" Either this world wanders without any laws throughout all 
ages, and the Constellations run to and fro with uncertain 
movements ; or else, if the Fates hold sway, a speedy de- 
struction is preparing for the City and the human race. Will 
the earth yawn, and cities be swallowed up ? Or will the 
glowing atmosphere deprive us of all moderate temperature ? 
Will the faithless earth refuse her crops of corn ? Will all 

the Furies and the other Deities of the Infernal Regions, who have answered 
him with direful omens. 

1 Tages, the founder of the art) ver. 637. See the note to 1. 584. Cicero 
mentions Tages as having sprung from the earth, in his book On Divination, 
B. ii- c. 23. 

2 But Figulus) ver. 639. He probably alludes to P. Nigidius Figulus, a 
Roman Philosopher, who had a great reputation for learning. Aulus Gellius 
pronounces him as, next to Varro, the most learned among the Romans. lie 
was noted for his mathematical and physical investigations, and followed the 
tenets of the Pythagorean school of Philosophy. He was also famed as an 
astrologer, and, in the Eusebian Chronicle, he is called a magician. He was 
an intimate friend of Cicero, and was one of the Senators selected by him to 
take down the examinations of the witnesses who gave evidence with regard 
to Catiline's conspiracy, B.C. 63. He was Praetor four years afterwards, and 
took an active part in the Civil War on the side of Pompev. He was, conse- 
quently, compelled by Caesar to lire in banishment, and died B.C. 44. A 
letter of Cicero to him is still extant, in his Epistles Ad Familiares, B. iv. 
Ep. 13. He is said to have received the name of Figulus, which means 
" a potter," from the circumstance of having promulgated on his return from 
Greece that the globe whirled round with the rapidity of the potter's wheel. 

8 Not Egyptian Memphit) ver. 640. This was the second city in import- 
ance in ancient Egypt, but sank into insignificance after the foundation of 
Alexandria. It was of unknown antiquity, its foundation being ascribed 
to Menes. It stood on the banks of the Nile, and was connected by canals 
with the lakes Moeris and Mareotis. It was the "seat of the worship of the 
Egyptian Ptha, or the Hephaestus of the Greeks. The Egyptian priesthood 
were especially famed for their skill in astrology and divination. 



u. I. 648-672] PHARSA.LIA. 43 

the water be mingled with poison infused therein ? What 
kind of ruin, O Gods of heaven, with what plagues do you 
furnish your vengeance ? At the same instant the closing 
days of many have met. If the cold star of Saturn, with its 
evil influence in the lofty heaven, had lighted up its dusky 
fires, Aquarius would have poured forth showers worthy of 
Deucalion 1 , and the whole earth would haye been concealed 
in the ocean spread over it. If, Phcebus, thou wast now 
urging the fierce Nemean lion 2 with thy rays, flames would 
be making their way over the whole world, and, set on fire by 
thy chariot, the sky would be in a blaze. Those fires pause : 
thou, Gradivus, who dost inflame the threatening Scorpion 
with his burning tail, and dost scorch his claws, why dost 
thou make preparations thus mighty ? For with his remote 
setting propitious Jupiter 3 is going down, and the healthful 
star of Venus is dim, and the Cyllenian Deity 4 , rapid in his 
movements, is retarded, and Mars occupies the heavens alone. 
" Why have the Constellations forsaken their courses, and 
why hi obscurity are they borne along throughout the uni- 
verse ? Why thus intensely shines the side of the sword-girt 
Orion 5 ? The frenzy of arms is threatening ; and the might 
of the sword shall confound all right by force ; and for many 
& year shall this madness prevail. And what avails it to 
ask .an end from Hie Gods of heaven ? That peace comes 
with a tyrant alone. Prolong, Rome, the continuous series 
of thy woes ; protract for a length of tune thy calamities, 
only now free during civil war." 

1 Showers wort/iy of Deucalion) ver. 653. For an account of the flood 
of Deucalion, see the First Book of Ovid's Metamorphoses. 

* The fierce Nemean lion) ver. 655. The Constellation Leo in the Zodiac 
was fabled to have been formed by the Lion of the Nemean forest, which 
was conquered by Hercules. 

3 Propitious Jupiter) ver. 661 . He means the star so called. 

4 And the Cyllenian Deity) ver. 662. Mercury was called " Cyllenius," 
from Mount Cyllene in Arcadia, on which he was said to have been born. 

* Side of the sword-girt Orion) ver. 665. " The unguarded words of Orion 
xcited the anger of the Gods. ' There is no wild beast,' said he, ' that I am 
unable to conquer.' The Earth sent a scorpion ; it attempted to fasten its 
crooked claws on the Goddess, the mother of the twins ; Orion opposed it. 
Latona added him to the number of the radiant stars, and said, ' Enjoy the 
reward of thy deserts.' " Such is the account which Ovid gives in the Fasti, 
B. v. L 540, of the origin of the Constellation of Orion. See also the curious 
tory of his birth related in the same Book, L 493, ct teg. Hesiod, however, 
ays that he was the son of Neptune by Euryale, the daughter of Minos. 
Pindar makes the isle of Chios to have been his birth-place, and not Boeotia. 



44 PHARSALIA IB. L 673-681. 

These presages greatly alarm the trembling multitude, 
but greater ones confound them. For just as on the 
heights of Pindus 1 the Edonian female 2 , filled with the 
Ogygian Lyseus 3 , hurries along, so likewise is a matron 4 , 
borne along through the astounded City, disclosing by 
these words how Phoebus is exciting her breast : " Whither, 
O Paean 3 , am I being borne ? In what land art thou placing 
me, hurried along amid the skies ? I see Pangceum", white 
with its snowy ridges, and extended Philippi beneath the 
crags of Hsemus 7 . What frenzy this is, O Phoebus, tell 

1 On the heighti of Pindut) ver. 674. Pindus was the name of that part 
of the mountain range running through Greece which separated Thessaly 
from Epirus. 

* The Edonian female) ver. 675. The Edoni or Edones were a Thracian 
people, situate between the Nestus and the Strymon. They were celebrated 
by their devotion to the orgies of Bacchus; whence " Edonis" in the Latin 
Poets, as in the present instance, signifies a female worshipper of Bacchus. 

3 The Ogygian Lyaut) ver. 675. Bacchus was called Lyaeus, from the 
Greek word Xwr, to "loosen" or "relax," because wine dispels care. He 
was probably styled " Ogygian " from the circumstance of his having been 
born at Thebes, which was called Ogygia, from Ogyges, one of its early 
kings. 

4 It a matron) ver. 676. Sulpitius says that her name was Oritia. 

* Whither, Pcean) ver. 678. Paean was originally a name given to a 
Deity who was the physician of the Gods. In that sense it came from the 
Greek -rcttui, " healing." Similarly it afterwards became a surname of JEscu- 
lapius, a God who had the power of healing. It was also given to Apollo 
and Thanatos, or Death, perhaps as being liberators of mankind from suffering 
and sorrow. It may, however, have been applied to the two last as coming 
from ra.'itu, " to strike," Death being supposed to strike with his dart, and 
Apollo, as the Deity of the Sun, striking with his rays. Apollo was frequently 
appealed to under this name, as all-powerful to avert evil. 

6 I see Pangceum) ver. 679. Pangaeum, or Pangaeus, was a range of 
mountains in Macedonia, between the Strymon and the Nestus, in the vici- 
nity of Philippi. 

7 The crags of Hcemus) ver. 680. The Haemus formed a lofty range of 
mountains (now called the Balkan chain) separating Thrace from Moesia. 
Though famed among the Poets for their immense height, they do not ex- 
ceed 4000 feet above the level of the sea. Lucan here falls into the error of 
confounding Pharsalia with Philippi, the place where Brutus and Cassius 
were afterwards defeated by Antony and Augustus Caesar. Howe has the 
following Note here : " It is pretty strange that so many great names of 
antiquity, as Virgil, Ovid, Petronius, and Lucan should be guilty of such 
a blunder in geography, as to confound the field of battle between Julius 
Caesar and Pompey with that between Octavius Caesar and Brutus, when 
it was very plain one was in the middle of Thessaly and the other in 
Thrace, a great part of Macedonia lying between them. Sulpitius, indeed, 
one of the commentators on Lucan, says, there was a town called Philippi, 



B. i. 681-695.] PHARSALIA. 45 

me ; why do Roman armies mingle their weapons and their 
bands ? Without an enemy 1 is there war ? Torn away, 
whither am I being borne? Thou art conducting me to 
the distant east, where the sea is changed by the stream 
of the Nile of Lagus 3 . Him who is lying a hideous trunk 3 
on the river's sand, do I recognize. Over the seas am I 
borne to the shifting Syrtes 4 and the parched Libya, whither 
the direful Erinnys has transferred the ranks of Emathia 5 . 
Now above the heights of the cloud-capt Alps and the 
aerial Pyrenees 6 am I torn away. To the abodes of my 
native City I return, and in the midst of the Senate 
impious warfare 7 is being waged. Factions again 8 arise, 
and once more throughout all the earth do I proceed. 
Permit me to behold fresh shores of the sea y , and fresh 
lands; now, Phoebus, have I beheld Philippi!" 

Thus she said ; and exhausted by her wearied frenzy she 
laid her down. 

in whose neighbourhood the battle between Caesar and Pompey was fought, 
but upon what authority I know not; but supposing that, it is undeniable 
that these two battles were fought in two different countries. I must own 
it seems to me the fault originally of Virgil (upon what occasion so correct 
a writer could commit so great an error is not easy to imagine), and that the 
rest took it very easily from him, without making any further enquiry." 

1 Without an enemy) ver. 682. That is, " without a foreign foe." 

2 The Nile of Lagus) ver. 684. The Nile is so called, as being under the 
sway of Ptolemy, the descendant of the Macedonian Lagus ; it was said to 
change the waters of the sea at its mouth in colour and taste. 

3 A hideous trunk) ver. 685. In allusion to the death of Pompey, 
which is related in the Eighth Book. 

* To the shifting Syrtes) ver. 686. He alludes to the march of the Roman 
army along the desert sands of Libya under the command of Cato, related at 
length in the Ninth Book. 

4 The ranks of Emathia) ver. 688. They are called Emathian from the 
circumstance of their then recent defeat in Emathia or Thessaly. 

8 The aerial Pyrenees) ver. 689. She alludes to the war in Spain waped by 
Caesar against the sons of Pompey, whom he defeated at the battle of Wunda. 

7 Impious warfare) ver. 691. Allusion is made to the death of Caesar 
by the hands of Brutus and Cassius and the other assassins in the Senate- 
house. 

8 Factions again arise} ver. 692. The Civil "Wars waged between Au- 
gustus and Antony on one side against Brutus and Cassius on the other, 
and afterwards between Augustus and Antony. 

* Fresh shores of the sea) ver. 693. By the use of the word " Pontus " he 
seems vaguely to refer to the Euxine Sea lying off the coast of Thrace, in 
which Philippi was situate. 



BOOK THE SECOND. 

CONTENTS. 

Reflections on the Prodigies, 1-15. The alarm at Borne described. The 
complaints of the matrons, 16-42. The complaints of the men, 43-66. A 
long speech is spoken by an aged man in reference to the Civil Wars carried 
on between Sulla and Marins, 67-233. Brutus repairs to Cato at night, 
and asks his advice, 234-285. Cato answers that he shall follow Pompey, 
and advises Brutus to do the same, 286-325. While they are conversing, 
Harcia appears, whom, formerly his own wife, Cato bad given to his friend; 
Hortensias, since whose death she has sought him again as her husband, 326 
-349. In the presence of Brutus they renew the nuptial vow, 350- 
391. Pompcy has in the meantime retired to Campania. The Apen- 
nines, with their streams, are described, 392438. Caesar takes posses- 
sion of the whole of Italy. The flight of Libo, Thermns, Sulla, Tarns, 
Lentulns, and Scipio, from the cities which they hold, 439477. Domitius 
Ahenobarbus, by breaking down the bridge, endeavours to impede the course 
of Caesar at Corfinium. Caesar crosses the river, and while he is preparing 
to lay siege to Corfinium, the citizens deliver Domitius to him. Caesar 
gives him his liberty against his wish, 478-525. Pompey addresses his 
troops, and promises to lead them to battle, 526-595. He retreats to 
Brnndisium, 596-609. The situation of that place is described, 610-627. 
Pompey sends his son to Asia to request the assistance of the eastern Kings, 
He himself prepares to cross over to E pirns, 628-649. Caesar follow! 
Pompey, and endeavours to cut him off from the sea. 650-679. Pompey 
leaves Italy, 680-703. Caesar enters Brundisinm, 704-736. 

AND now was the wrath of the Deities displayed, and the 
universe gave manifest signs of war; foreknowing nature 
by her monster-bearing confusion overthrew the laws and 
the compacts of things, and proclaimed, the fkiality. Why. 
ruler of Olympus, has it seemed good to thee to add this 
care to anxious mortals, that by means of direful omens 
they should know of misfortunes about to come? Whether 
it is that, when first the parent of the world, the flame re 
ceding, set apart the shapeless realms and unformed matter, 
he established causes to endless time, by which he rules all 
tilings, binding himself as well by a law, and, with the im- 
movable boundaries of fate, allotted the world to endure its 
destined ages ; or whether it is that nothing is preordained, 
but Chance wanders in uncertainty, and brings and brings 
round again events, and accident rules the affairs of mortals : 
may that be instantaneous, whatever thou dost intend; 



B. n. 15-34.] PHARSALIA. 47 

may the mind of man be blind to his future fate ; to him 
who dreads may it be allowed to hope. 

Therefore when they perceived at the price of how vast 
calamity to the world the truthfulness of the Gods of heaven 
was about to be realized, there was a general mourning 1 in 
token of woe throughout the City ; clad in the plebeian garb 2 
all honors lay concealed ; the purple accompanied no fasces. 
Then did they withhold expression of their griefs, and great 
anguish without a voice pervaded all. Thus at the moment 
of death the astounded house is silent while the body is 
lying not yet called upon by name 3 , nor as yet does the mother 
with her dishevelled locks prompt the arms of the female 
domestics to the cruel beatings on their breasts ; but when, 
life fled, she presses the stiffened limbs and the lifeless 
features, and the eyes swimming in death, no longer is it 
anguish, but now it is dread ; distractedly she throws herself 
down, and is astounded at her woes. The matron has laid 
aside her former habit, and sorrowing throngs occupy the 
shrines. These sprinkle the Gods with tears ; these dash 
then- breasts against the hard ground, and, awe-stricken, 
throw their torn-out hair upon the sacred threshold, and 
with repeated bowlings strike upon the ears accustomed 
to be addressed in prayer. 

And not all lay in the Temple of the Supreme Thunderer ; 

1 There was a general mourning) ver. 18. " Justitium." This term 
doubtless originally signified a cessation of judicial business, but came after- 
wards to denote a time when public business of every kind was suspended. 
At this period the courts of law and the treasury were closed, and no am- 
bassadors were received by the Senate. The justitium was formally pro- 
claimed by the Senate and the magistrates in times of public alarm and 
danger. In the lapse of time, a justitium was usually ordered as a mark 
of public mourning, and under the Empire it was only employed under 
such circumstances. 

a Clad in the plebeian garb) ver. 19. By this expression he means that 
the Consuls forbore to wear the purple, which was one of the insignia of 
their office. Their being attended by lictors, with the fasces, was another 
of their badges of office. 

3 Called upon by name) ver. 23. " Conclamata." After a person was 
dead, those who were present lamented aloud, and called on the party by 
name, to ascertain if he was only in a trance. According to some autho- 
rities this was repeated daily for seven days, and was done for the last 
time when the body was placed on the funeral pile, on which occasion 
it was finally said " conclamatum est," signifying that no hope of life now 
remained. 



48 PHAESALIA. [B. n. 35-50. 

Ahey made division of the Deities, and at no altar was there 
wanting a parent to create discontent 1 ; one of whom, 
tearing her bedewed cheeks, and blackened with blows, 
upon her livid arms, exclaimed, " Now, wretched matrons, 
beat your breasts, now tear your locks, nor defer this grief 
and preserve it for our crowning woes. Now have you 
the power to weep, while the fortune of the chieftains is 
undecided; when one shall have proved the conqueror, 
you must rejoice." With these incentives did grief en- 
courage itself. 

The men likewise, repairing to the hostile camps, are pour- 
ing forth well-grounded complaints against the relentless 
Divinities. " Oh luckless lot, that we were not born for the 
Punic days of Cannse 2 and of Trebia :J , a youthful race ! Gods 
of heaven, we do not ask for peace; inspire with anger foreu/n 
nations ; at once arouse the enraged cities ; let the world 
conspire in arms ; let the Median ranks descend from 
Acheemenian 4 Susa s ; let the Scythian Ister 6 not confine 



1 To create discontent) ver. 36. " Invidiam factura." By addressing 
prayers to the Gods which were not likely to be fulfilled, and thus causing the 
Deities to be censured for their inattention to the wishes of their worshippers. 

a Punic days of Cannce) ver. 46. Cannae was a village of Apulia, 
situate in a plain near the rivers Aufidus and Vergellus. It was famed 
for the memorable defeat there of the Romans under L. JKmilius Paulus 
and C. Terentius Varro, the Consuls, by Hannibal, the Carthaginian general, 
B.C. 216. From forty to fifty thousand Romans are said to have perished 
in this battle. 

3 And of Trebia) ver. 46. Trebia was a small river in Gallia Cisalpina, 
falling into the Padus, or Fo, near Placcntia. Hannibal gained a victory 
there over the Ramans, B.C. 218. 

4 Achamenian) ver. 49. This epithet refers to Achremenes, the founder 
of the race of the Achaemenidae, and the ancestor of the Fenian kings. He 
was said to have been nurtured by an eagle. The epithet in the present 
instance, and, in general, as used by the Latin Poets, has the signification of 
" Persian." 

* (Sfaso) ver. 49. Susa (which is called Shushan in the Old Testament) 
was the winter residence of the Persian kings, and was situate in the 
province of Susiana, on the banks of the rirer Choaspes. The climate was 
very hot here, and hence the choice of it for a winter palace. Its site 
is now marked by huge mounds, in which are found fragments of bricks 
and pottery. 

8 The Scythian Ister) ver. 50. The river, the whole whereof is now called 
the Danube, was, from its source as far as Vienna, called " Danubius" by the 
Romans; from there to the Black Sea it received the name of "' Ister." 



B. n. 50-56.] PHAESALIA. 49 

the Massagetan 1 ; let the Albis 2 pour forth the yellow- 
haired Suevi 3 from the extreme north and the unsubdued 
sources of the Rhine * ; make us the foes of all nations ; 
but avert civil warfare. On the one side let the Dacian 
press- wpow us 6 , the Getan on the other ; let the one meet 
the Iberians 7 , the other turn his standards against the 
eastern quivers. Let no hand, Rome, of thine 8 , enjoy 

1 The Massagetan) ver. 50. The Massagetse were a warlike race of 
Scythia, to the north of the Araxes, and the present Sea of Aral. Their 
country corresponds to that of the Kirghiz Tartars at the present day, in 
the north of Independent Tartary. Herodotus appears to include under this 
name all the Nomadic tribes of Asia east of the Caspian. It was said that 
it was their custom to kill and eat their aged people. 

a Let the Albis) ver. 52. The Albis, now the Elbe, was the most easterly 
river of Germany with which the Romans became acquainted. According 
to Tacitus it rose in the country of the Hermunduri. The Romans first 
reached this river B.O. 9, and crossed it for the first time B.C. 3, under 
Domitius Ahenobarbus. 

3 The yellow-haired Suevi) ver. 51. The term " Suevi " is supposed to 
have been the collective name of a large number of German tribes, who 
were remarkable for a migratory mode of life. Their locality has not been 
with any exactness ascertained. In the third century a race of people 
called " Suevi " settled in and gave the name to the present Suabia. 

4 Sources of the Rhine) ver. 52. The lllucti lived about the sources of 
the Rhine. Suetonius says *hat Augustus crippled, but did not subdue, 
them. 

5 Let the Dacian press upon us) ver. 54. The Daci inhabited Dacia, 
which lay to the north of the Danube, and comprehended the present coun- 
tries of Transylvania, Moldavia, Wallachia, and part of Hungary. They 
were of similar race with the Getae, and spoke the same language. In 
the reign of Augustus, this warlike people crossed the Danube, and, after 
plundering the allies of Rome, were repulsed by the generals of Augustus. 
In the reign of Domitian they obliged the Romans to purchase peace by 
the payment of a tribute. They were finally conquered by Trajan. 

6 The Getan on the other) ver. 54. The Getae are said to have been the 
same people as the Daci. In the later periods of the Roman Empire their 
country was occupied by the Goths, who had migrated from the southern 
shores of the Baltic, from which circumstance the Getae and the Goths have 
often been erroneously looked upon as the same people. The Getae fur- 
nished slaves" to Greece and Italy; and Geta figures as a crafty servant in 
the Plays of Terence. Davus similarly means a Dacian slave ; he, too, is 
introduced in the Latin Comedy. 

7 Meet the Iberians) ver. 54. The Iberi were the nations of Spain, who 
dwelt in the vicinity of the Iberus, now called the Ebro, in the north-east 
of that country. 

8 Let no hand, Rome, of thine) ver. 56. That is, " Let every hand be 
engaged in war against a foreign enemy." 

E 



50 PHAESALIA. [B. n. 56-72. 

leisure. Or if, ye Gods of heaven, it is your pleasure to 
blot out the Hesperian name, gathered into fires let the 
entire aether l descend in lightnings upon the earth. En- 
raged Parent, at the same instant smite both partisans and 
leaders, while not as yet they have deserved it. Do they with 
an extent so great of unheard of crimes, seek to know which 
of the two is to rule the City? Hardly would it have 
been worth the while to levy civil war, that neither might." 
Such complaints did piety, doomed to be bootless, pour 
forth ; but a care their own afflicted wretched parents, and 
they detested the long-lived destiny of a sorrowing old age, 
and years reserved for civil warfare a second time. And 
one, seeking precedents for their great alarm, exclaimed, 
" Not other commotions did the Fates intend at the time 
when.victorious afterthe Teutonic 2 and the Libyan triumphs 3 , 
the exiled Marius concealed his head amid the slimy sedge 4 . 
The pools of the plashy soil and the fenny marshes con- 
cealed, Fortune, thy deposit ; next did the chains of iron 5 

1 Let the entire cether) ver. 58. Probably by the term " aether," he means 
the fiery element which was supposed to range in the firmament, above the 
regions of the air. 

2 After the Teutonic) ver. 69. The speaker probably alludes to the vic- 
tory which Marius, the Consul, gained at Aquas Sextiae (now Aix) against 
the combined forces of the Teutones and Ambrones. According to some 
accounts there were 200,000 slain and 80,000 taken prisoners at this 
battle. 

6 And the Libyan triumphs) ver. 69. He alludes to the conquest of 
Jugurtha, king of Numidia, by Marius ; which, however, was effected by 
the treachery of Bocchus, king of Mauritania, as much as by the general- 
ship of either Marias or his predecessor Metcllus. 

4 Amid the slimy sedge) ver. 70. Allusion is made to the circumstance 
of Marius hiding in the sedge and mud of the marshes of Minturna-, in 
Latium. when pursued by the vengeance of Sulla. He was, however, dis- 
covered, dragged from his retreat, and, with a rope round his neck, deli- 
vered up to the authorities of Minturna?. 

5 The chains of iron) ver. 72. Marius, when taken captive, was not, 
as the present passage would seem to imply, thrown into a dungeon, but 
placed in the charge of a woman named Fannia, who was supposed to be 
his personal enemy, but was secretly his friend. It was while he was here 
that a Gallic or a Cimbrian soldier was sent into his apartment to put him 
to death. The part of the room where the aged Marius lay was in the 
shade, and with a terrible voice he exclaimed " Man, dost thou dare to 
murder C. Marius 1" The barbarian, imagining that fire flashed from his 
eyes, dropped his sword, and rushed out of the house, exclaiming " I cannot 
murder C. Marius ! " 






B. n. 73-92.] PHARSALIA. 51 

eat into the aged man, and prolonged squalor in prison. A 
Consul, and fated to die successful * in the subdued City, 
beforehand did he pay the penalty of his crimes. Death 
herself fled full oft from the hero, and in vain was power 
granted to his enemy 2 over the hated blood; who, at the 
very stroke of death stood riveted and from his faltering 
hand let fall the sword. He had beheld an intense light 
in the darkened cell, and the dread Goddesses of crime, and 
the Marius of a future day, and in alarm he had heard, 
' It is not right for thee to touch this neck ; to the laws of 
fate does he owe many deaths before his own ; lay aside 
thy vain fury. If it is your wish to avenge the destruction 
of your extinct race, Cimbrians, do you preserve this aged 
man ! ' Not by the favour of the Deity, but by the mighty 
anger of the Gods of heaven was this cruel man pro- 
tected, and he sufficed for Fate when desiring to ruin 
Eome. 

" He, too, borne over the stormy main 3 to a hostile land, 
and driven among the deserted cottages 4 , lay amid the 
spoiled realms of the conquered Jugurtha 5 , and trod 
upon the Punic ashes c . Carthage and Marius exchanged 
consolation for their fates, and equally prostrate, patiently 

1 Fated to die successful) ver. 74. Being afterwards restored to power 
at Rome, he died in the 71st year of his age, and on the 18th day of his 
seventh Consulship. 

2 Power granted to his enemy) ver. 76. The Chnbrian or Gallic soldier 
referred to in the Note to 1. 72. 

3 Borne over the stormy main) ver. 88. He allndes to the departure of 
Marius from Minturnae, where he was furnished with a small ship, and, 
after touching at the isle of 2Enaria (now Ischia) and Eryx, in Sicily, he 
landed in Africa, the country of his former enemy, Jugurtha. 

4 Among the deserted cottages) ver. 89. "Mapalia" were moveabls huts 
or cottages, which the Numidians carried on waggons when they moved 
from place to place, seeking new pastures for their flocks. 

s Of the conquered Jugurtha) ver. 90. Jugurtha, the king of Numidia, 
an illegitimate son of Mastanabal, despite of numerous defeats, long made 
head against Metellus, the Roman general, but was finally conquered by 
Marius, who enjoyed the honour of a triumph on the occasion, and Jugur- 
tha was finally thrown into a dungeon and starved to death. 

* Trod upon the Punic ashes) ver. 91. Landing near Carthage, Marius 
was forbidden, by the lictor of Sextilius, the Praetor, to set foot on the 
African shore ; on which he exclaimed, " Go tell thy master that thou hast 
seen Caius Marius sitting amid the ruins of Carthage ;" not inaptly com- 
paring the downfall of that great city to his own ruined fortunes. 

E a 



52 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 93-104. 

submitted to the Gods. There did he collect together the 
resentfulness of Libya 1 . When first, his fortune returning, 
he set free troops of slaves 2 , the iron wrought up 3 into 
swords, the slaves' dungeons 4 sent forth the ruthless 
bands. To no one were entrusted the ensigns of their leader 
to be carried, except to him who had now gained expe- 
rience in wickedness, and had brought crime into the camp. 
Oh ye Fates ! what a day, what a day was that, on which 
the victorious Marius seized the walls ! and with strides how 
vast did cruel Death hurry on ! With the commonalty the 
nobles fall; and far and wide stalks the sword, and the 
weapon is withdrawn from the breast of none. Gore stands 
in the temples, and red with plenteous slaughter the slippery 
stones are wet. To no one was his age* a protection. 

1 The resentfulness of Libya) ver. 93. By " Libycas irag," he perhaps 
means such a thirst for vengeance as Libyans or Africans alone usually 
display. It has been suggested that there is an intended reference here to 
the giant Antaeus, who (as Lucan says in the Fourth Book, 1. 597) was 
born in the caves of Libya and of whom it was fabled that every time he 
touched the earth he received additional strength, and that similarly Marius 
always rose from the most depressed state superior to his misfortunes. 
The serpents of Africa were said to gain fresh fury and venom from their 
contact with the earth. 

2 lie set free troops of slaves) ver. 94. He alludes to the circumstance of 
Marius landing in Etruria from Africa, and, by proclaiming freedom to the 
slaves, collecting a large army, with which he joined L. Cornelius Cinna, the 
Consul, who had been driven from Rome by his colleague, Cn. Octavius. Ma- 
rius, with Cinna and Carbo, shortly afterwards entered Rome, and, in their 
thirst for vengeance, were guilty of the most dreadful atrocities. 

3 The iron icroug/ti up) ver. 95. " Conflato ferro," probably means, as 
one of the Scholiasts suggests, that the iron chains and fetters with which 
the slaves were bound, were used to make swords and other weapons. 
Another suggestion is, that " ferro " means the spades and mattocks which 
were used in cultivating the fields. 

4 The slaves' dungeons) ver. 95. The " ergastula " were private prisons 
attached to most of the country residences of the more wealthy Romans, for 
the confinement and punishment of their refractory slaves. They were pro- 
bably underground, as appears from passages in Columella, and in the Au- 
lularia of Flautus, 1L 301. 319, where the dungeon is called by the name of 
" puteus." Columella also says, that the "ergastulum" was lighted by narrow 
windows, too high to be touched by the hand. Plutarch says that these 
prisons became necessary throughout Italy by reason of the numerous 
conquests of the Romans, and the great number of foreign slaves intro- 
duced to cultivate the lands. 

8 To no one was his age) ver. 104. He alludes to the dreadful butcheries 
perpetrated by the body-guard of Marius, which he had formed out of the 



B. n. 105-122.] PHAESALIA. 53 

There was no shame at having hurried on the closing day 
of the aged man hi his declining years; nor in the very 
threshold of life at cutting short the rising destiny of the 
wretched infant. By what criminality could little chil- 
dren be deserving of slaughter? But now enough is it 
to be able to die. The very impetuosity of frenzy hurries 
them on, and it seems like sluggishness to be in search 
of the guilty. To swell the number a large portion falls ; 
and the blood-stained victor seizes the head cut off from 
an unknown neck, as he is ashamed to go with an empty 
hand. The only hope of safety is to imprint trembling 
kisses ' on the polluted right hand. Although a thousand 
swords attended the unheard-of signals for death, de- 
generate people, hardly would it be becoming for men 
thus to earn lengthened ages of existence, much less 
the short-lived disgrace of surviving, and life until Sulla 
returns 2 . 

" Who has the leisure to bewail the deaths of the multitude ? 
Hardly thee, Baebius 3 , rent asunder by thine entrails, and 
how that the countless hands of the dismembering throng 
tore thy limbs to pieces; or thee, Antonius, foreteller of 
woes, whose features, hanging by the torn white hah- 4 , 

slaves attending him, who slew indiscriminately all of the aristocratic party 
they could lay hands upon. 

1 To imprint trembling kisses) ver. 114. Marius had given instruc- 
tions to his guards that all in the streets whom he did not salute, or to 
whom he did not extend his hands to be kissed, were to be put to death 
indiscriminately. Under these circumstances Q. Ancharius was killed ; and 
one of the Scholiasts mentions Euanthius, a former friend of Marius, who 
was thus slain. 

1 Until Sulla returns) ver. 118. Who dealt equal vengeance on the 
Marian party. 

3 Hardly thee, Bcelius) ver. 120. He alludes to the death of M. 
Baebius, who was torn to pieces by the hands of the Marian faction. Con- 
nected with his fate one of the Scholiasts relates a story not to the credit of 
Terence, the Comic Poet He says that Terence, being surrounded by the 
partisans of Marius, promised, probably as the price of his own safety, that 
he would discover to them an enemy of Marius, who had used his influence 
in the Senate to his prejudice, and thereupon informed them where they 
would find Baebius. 

4 Hanging by the torn white hair) ver. 122. M. Antonius, who is spoken 
of by Cicero as one of the greatest of the Roman Orators, having belonged 
to the party of Sulla, was marked out for destruction by Marius, on his 
return to the City. Touched by his eloquence, the soldiers who were sent 



04 PHABSALLL [B. n. 123-133: 

dripping with blood, the soldier carrying placed upon the 
festive table. Fimbia mangled l the beheaded Crassi 2 . The 
relentless prison was steeped with Tribunitial gore. Thee 
also, Scsevola :t , neglected by the unscrupulous right hand, 
before the very shrine of the Goddess and her ever-burning 
hearths they slew ; but exhausted old age poured forth little 
blood from thy throat, and spared the flames. These things 
his seventh Consular year followed 4 , the fasces regained. 
That was the closing period of the life of Marius, who had 
endured all things which evil fortune is able to effect, and 
who had enjoyed all things which a better fortune can bring, 
and had experienced what fortune can destine for man. 

refused to execute their commands, on which P. Annius, the Tribune, their 
commander, cut off his head, and carried it to Marina, while he was at table. 
After he had handled it with scorn and derision, he ordered it to be placed 
on the Rostra. 

1 Fimbria mangled) ver. 124. C. Flavius Fimbria was one of the most 
violent partisans of the Marian faction. Cicero styles him " homo auda- 
cissimus et insanissimus," " a most audacious and most insane man." 
Being finally defeated by Sulla, he fell by the hands of one of his own slaves, 
whom he commanded to slay him. His career seems to have been that of a 
madman. 

a The beheaded Crassi) ver. 124. According to some accounts P. Lici- 
nius Crassus, the father, and his son of the same name, were slain in each 
other's sight by Fimbria. It is, however, more generally stated that 
the son was put to death before his father's eyes, who afterwards stabbed 
himself to escape a more ignominious death at the hands of the Marian fac- 
tion. Appian relates the story in a different manner. He says that the 
father, after slaying the son, was himself slain by the partisans of Marius. 
Crassus, the Triumvir, was a younger son of the elder of these Crassi. 

s Thee also, Scctvola) ver. 126. Mucius Sczevola, the Pontifex Maximum, 
notwithstanding his virtuous character, was proscribed by the Marian 
faction, on which he fled for refuge to the temple of Vesta, He was, how- 
ever, slain by the younger Marius, and the altars were drenched with hi 
blood. " Neglectum violatae dextrae " has been supposed by some to refer 
to the story of his ancestor, Mucins Scsevola, having thrust his hand into the 
flames to show his firmness when taken prisoner by Porsenna. Weisse, 
however, thinks that it refers to the right hand of Marius, which was ex- 
tended to be kissed by those whom he intended to save, and that (certainly 
by a forced construction) it means " unregarded by the unscrupulous right 
hand." "Neglectu violatse Vestoe," "with heedlessness of the outraged 
Vesta," is another reading, and perhaps a preferable one, as Scaevola was 
not put to death till some years after the de^th of the elder Marius. 

* Seventh Consular year followed) ver. 130. Thirteen years intervened 
between the sixth and seventh Consulship of Marius. He died at the com- 
mencement of his seventh Consulship. 



B. n. 134-149.] PHARSALIA. 55 

" Now at Sacriportus l how many dead bodies fell pros- 
trate, or how many slaughtered troops did the Collinian 
Gate 2 endure, at the time when the sovereignty of 
the world and the sway of power, transferred, had almost 
changed its site 3 , and the Samnite hoped for Roman, 
wounds exceeding the Caudine Forks 4 ! Sulla, too, added 
as an avenger to the boundless slaughter. He shed the 
little blood that was remaining to the City, and while he 
amputated the limbs now too corrupt, the healing art ex- 
ceeded its limits, and the hand followed too far where the 
malady led it. The guilty perished ; but when now the 
guilty alone could possibly be surviving. Then was scope 
given to hatred, and, let loose from the rein of the laws, 
anger rushed on. Not for one crime were all sacrificed, but 
each one framed a criminality of his own. Once for all had 
the victor given his commands. Through the entrails of his 
master 5 did the servant plunge the accursed sword ; sons 

1 Now at Sacriportus) ver. 134. Marins baring died, and Cinna being 
slain, Sulla returned from Asia, where he had been carrying on the war 
against Mithridates, and after landing at Brundisium, defeated the younger 
Marina with great slaughter at Sacriportus, in Latium, B.C. 82. 

2 Did the Collinian Gate) ver. 135. The-Samnites and Lucanians, who 
favoured the cause of the younger Marius, under Pontius Telesinus and L. 
Lamponius, marched towards Rome, which, on Marins being shut up in 
Praeneste, was left by Sulla without any protection. Sulla, however, 
came up with them at the Colline Gate, and a battle was fought, which was 
most obstinately contested, as Telesinus had vowed that he would level 
Eome to the ground, and transfer the dominion to his own native place. 
The victory was gained by Sulla, but 50,000 men are said to have fallen 
on each side. Telesinus was among the slain. The Porta Collina was the 
most northernly of the gates of Rome ; it was situate near the Quirinal 
Esquinal and Viminal Hills (Colles), from which it took its name. 

3 Had almost changed its site) ver. 136. He alludes to the resolution 
abovementioned, which had been formed by Pontins Telesinus and the 
younger Marius, to remove the seat of government from Rome to Samnium. 

4 Exceeding the Caudine Forks) ver. 138. The " Furcse Caudinae," or 
" Caudine Forks," were narrow passes in the mountains near Caudium, a 
town of Samnium. Here the Roman array had been defeated by the Sam- 
mies, and were sent under the yoke, B.C. 321. 

s Through the entrails of his master) ver. 149. One of the Scholiasts 
suggests that this is said particularly in allusion to the fate of the younger 
Marius, who, being shut up in Praeneste, and, despairing of holding out any 
longer, endeavoured, with the brother of Telesrnug, to make his escape by a 
subterranean passage, but was betrayed by a slave ; on which, finding their 



6 PHAESALIA. [B. n. 149-171 

were steeped in a father's blood. The contention was, to 
whom the severed head of the parent belonged ; brothers fell 
as a reward to brothers. The tombs were filled by flight, 
and living bodies were intermingled with the buried, and 
the dens of wild beasts received the throng. This one 
broke his neck and his compressed throat with the halter ; 
another hulling himself, with weight falling headlong, 
dashed against the hard ground, burst asunder ; and from 
the blood-stained victor they snatched away their own 
slaughter ; this one himself heaped up the oaken fabric of 
his own funeral pile, and, all his blood not yet poured forth, 
leaped down into the flames, and, while yet he might, took 
possession of the fires. The heads of chieftains are carried 
on javelins throughout the trembling City, and heaped up 
in the midst of the Forum. Whatever crime there is any- 
where existing is then known. Not Thrace beheld so many 
hanging in the stables l of the Bistonian tyrant, nor Libya 
upon the posts of Antseus ; nor did lamenting Greece weep 
for torn limbs so many in the halls of Pisa 8 . When now 
they had mouldered away in corruption, and confused, in 
length of time lost their marks, the right hand of the 
wretched parents collected them, and, recognized, stealthily 
removed them with timid theft. I remember, too, that I 
myself, anxious to place the disfigured features of my slain 
brother upon the pile and the forbidden flames, searched 
about among all the carcases of this Sullanian peace, and 
amid all the trunks sought for one with which the head 
lopped from the neck would correspond. 

flight discovered, they slew each other. According to other accounts Marius 
killed himself, or, at his own request, was stabbed by his own slave. 

1 Hanging in the stalled) ver. 163. Diomedes, king of Thrace (which 
was also called Bistonia), was said to have fed his mares upon the flesh of 
strangers, and to have fixed their heads on his doors. Antaeus, the Libyan 
giant, who was slain by Hercules, was also said to have perpetrated similar 
cruelties. 

8 In the /Milt of Pisa) ver. 165. He alludes to the practice of (Enomaiis, 
king of Pisa in Elis, who made it a condition that those who came forward 
as suitors for the hand of his daughter, Hippodamia, should contend with 
himself in a chariot race ; and that those who were conquered should be 
put to death. After many had been sacrificed in the attempt, Pelops, 
through bribing Myrtilus, the charioteer of (Enomaiis, won the hand of 
Hippodamia. 



B. n. 173-194.] PHARSALIA. 57 

" Why shall I make mention of the shades of Catulus ap- 
peased l ? When Marius the victim 2 made, a sad sacrifice 
to perhaps an unwilling shade, an unutterable atonement 
to an insatiate tomb 3 ; when we beheld the mangled limbs, 
and the wounds equal in number with the members, and 
no one given fatal to life, although upon a body mangled 
all over, and the ruthless usage of an accursed cruelty to 
forego the death of him who was thus perishing. Hands 
torn off fell down, and the tongue cut out still quivered, and 
with noiseless movement beat the vacant air. This one 
cuts off the ears, another the nostrils of the aquiline 
nose ; that one gouges out the eye-balls from their hollow 
sockets, and, his mangled limbs viewed by himself, put out his 
eyes the last. Hardly will there be any believing that one 
person could have endured the punishments thus numerous 
of a crime so dreadful. Thus under the mass of ruins limbs 
are broken beneath the vast weight ; nor more disfigured 
do the headless carcases come to shore which have pe- 
rished in the midst of the ocean. 

" Why has it pleased you to lose your pains, and to dis- 
figure the features of Marius, as though an ignoble person ? 
That this criminality and slaughter on being made known 
might please Sulla, he ought to have been able to be recog- 
nized. Praenestine Fortune beheld 4 all her citizens cut off 

1 The shades of Catulus appeased) ver. 174. Q. Lutatius Catulus, who 
had formerly been the colleague of Marius in the Consulship, in his expe- 
dition against the Cimbri, having espoused the cause of Sulla, his name was 
included among the rest of victims in the Marian proscription of B.C. 87. 
Finding escape impossible, he shut himself in a room, and, kindling a char- 
coal fire, died of suffocation. 

J When Marius the victim) ver. 175. He alludes to the cruel death of 
M. Marius Gratidianus, the friend and fellow-townsman of Cicero. He was 
the son of M. Gratidius, but was adopted by one of the Marii, probably 
a brother of the elder Marius. In revenge for the death of Catulus, his 
brother, or, according to some, his son, obtained of Sulla the proscription of 
Gratidianus, on account of his connexion with the family of the Marii. He 
was butchered by the infamous Catiline, according to some accounts, at the 
tomb of Catulus. His tongue, nose, and ears were cut off, and his eyes dug 
out, and his head was then carried in triumph through the City. 

3 To an insatiate tomb) ver. 176. " Inexpleto busto." " A tomb that 
would be content with no propitiatory sacrifice." 

4 Prasnestine Fortune beheld) ver. 194. By the direction of Sulla, Lu- 
cretius Ofella laid siege to the town of Praeneste, and, after it was taken, 
5000 of the inhabitants were put to the sword, although they had thrown 



58 PHARSALI A. [B. n. 194-213. 

together by the sword a people perishing at a moment by a 
single death. Then fell the flower of Italy, now the solje youth 
of Latium, and stained the sheepfolds of wretched Rome 1 . 
So many youths at the same instant to fall by a hostile 
death, fall oft has famine, the rage too of the ocean, and -u<l- 
den earthquake caused, or pestilence of climate and locality, 
or slaughter in warfare, vengeance it never was that did so. 
Hardly, amid the masses of the dense multitude, and the 
pallid throngs, could the victors, death inflicted, move 
their hands. Hardly, the slaughter completed, do they 
fall, and with neck still dubious 2 they totter ; but the vast 
carnage bears them down, and the carcases perform the part 
of slaughter ; the trunks falling heavily smother the living *. 
Unconcerned he sat above, a careless spectator of wicked- 
ness so great; he repented not that he had ordered so 
many thousands of the hapless multitude to die. 

"The Etrurian stream received 4 all the Sullanian 
corpses heaped together. Into the river the first ones foil, 
upon the bodies the last. Ships sailing with the tide stuck 
fast, and, choked up in its waters by the bloody carnage, the 

themselves upon the mercy of the conquerors. The Goddess Fortuna had 
a temple at Praeneste, where her prophecies were highly esteemed, under 
the name of " Praenestinae Sortes." The town was situate about twenty 
miles to the south-east of Rome, and, from its cool situation, was much fre- 
quented by the Romans in the summer season. It is now called Palestrina. 

1 The skeepfolds of welched Rome) ver. 197. " Ovilia." By this name, 
which properly signifies " the sheepfolds," the enclosures on the Campus 
Martins were called, in which the centuries were enclosed on the occasion 
of giving their votes for the magistrates of Rome. On the third day after 
the battle at the Colline Gate, in which he had conquered Pontius Telesinus, 
Sulla directed all the Samnite and Lucanian prisoners to be collected in the 
ovilia of the Campus Martius, and ordered his soldiers to slaughter them. 
Their shrieks alarming the Senators, who had been convened by Sulla in 
the Temple of Bellona, he requested them to take no notice of what was 
going on, as he was only inflicting due chastisement on some rebels. 

a With neck still dubious) ver. 204. It is doubtful what " dubia cervice" 
exactly means. Cortius thinks that it signifies that the head is still remain- 
ing attached to the body, not being cut clean off. It seems more likely, 
however, to mean those who have received wounds in the throat, and have 
not fallen but are only staggering, and who are borne down by the weight of 
others who are slain outright. 

3 Smotiter the living) ver. 206. By suffocating the others, who are not as 
yet dead or mortally wounded. 

4 The Etrurian stream received) ver. 210. The bodies were generally 
thrown into the Tiber and thus carried down to the sea. 



B. n. 213-236.] PHARSALIA. 59 

mouth of the river flowed out into the sea. The following 
waves stood still at the mass, until the stream of deep 
blood made a passage for itself, and, pouring forth over all 
the plain and rushing with headlong stream down to the 
floods of Tiber, aided the impeded waters ; and now no 
longer does its bed nor yet its banks, contain the river, and 
it throws back the corpses on the plain. At length having 
struggled with difficulty down to the Etrurian waves, 
with the flowing blood it divided the azure sea. For this 
did Sulla merit to be styled the saviour of the state ; for 
this to be called the Fortunate 1 ; for this to raise for him- 
self a tomb in the middle of the Plain of Mars ? 

" These wrongs await us to be again endured ; in this 
order of warfare will they proceed ; this conclusion will 
await the civil strife. Although still greater calamities do 
our alarms anticipate, and they rush to battle with much 
greater detriment to the human race. Rome recovered was 
the greatest reward of war to the exiled Marii, nor more did 
victory afford to Sulla than utterly to destroy the hated fac- 
tion. These, Fortune 2 , on other grounds thou dost invite, 
and, raised to power already, they meet in combat. Neither 
would be commencing civil war, if content with that with 
which Sulla was." Thus did old age lament, sorrowing and 
mindful of the past, and fearful of the future. 

But terror did not strike the breast of the noble Brutus :; , 
nor was he a portion of the trembling populace weeping 
in alarm so great at the commotion ; but in the drowsy 

1 To le called the Fortunate) ver. 221. After the death of the younger 
Marias, on the occasion of his triumph over Mithridates, B.C. 81, SulTa 
claimed for himself the title of Felix, or " Fortunate," as being the especial 
favourite of the Gods. He believed himself to be especially under the pro- 
tection of Venus and Hercules. His son and daughter were also named 
Faustus and Fausta, on account of the good fortune of their father. 

3 These Fortune) ver. 230. Namely, Caesar and Pompey. 

3 Of tlie nolle Jirutus) ver. 234. M. Junius Brutus, professing to follow 
M. Porcius Cato as his political model, sided with Pompey. After the battle 
of Pharaalia he fled to Larissa, whence he wrote a letter to Caesar, soliciting 
pardon, which was not only granted, but the conqueror even requested Brutus 
to come to him. According to Plutarch, it was Brutus who informed Caesar 
of Pompey's flight into Egypt. Notwithstanding the favours which he had 
received from Caesar, he joined Cassius and the band of conspirators who 
murdered Caesar in the Senate-Louse. Being defeated at Philippi by Antony 
and Augustus, he fell upon his own sword. 



60 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 236-267. 

night, when the Parrhasian Helice 1 was turning her cha- 
riot obliquely, he knocked at the not extensive halls of his 
kinsman Cato 2 . He found him with sleepless anxiety re- 
flecting on the public affairs, the fates of men, and the 
fortunes of the City, both fearful for all and regardless for 
himself ; and in these words he began to address him : 

" Do thou, now the sole refuge for virtue expelled and long 
since banished from all lands, whom by no tempestuous 
shock Fortune shall tear away from thee, direct me waver- 
ing in mind, do thou confirm me in doubt with assured 
strength ; for let others follow Magnus or the arms of 
Caesar, Cato shall be the sole leader of Brutus. Dost thou 
adhere to peace, keeping thy footsteps unshaken while the 
world is in doubt ? Or has it been thy pleasure, mingling 
in slaughter with the leaders of crime and of the maddened 
populace, to forgive the civic strife ? Each one do his own 
reasons hurry away to the accursed combat : these a pol- 
luted house 3 , and laws to be dreaded in peace ; these hunger 
to be driven away by means of the sword, and plighted faith 
to be lost sight of 4 amid the rums of the world. Fury has 
impelled no one to arms; overcome by a vast reward, 
they are repairing to the camps : for its own sake is the 
warfare pleasing to thee alone ? What has it availed thee 
so many years to have remained untouched by the man- 

1 Parrhasian Helice) ver. 237. The constellation of the Greater Bear 
was called Helice, from the Greek word fair**, to revolve, because it re- 
volves round the Pole. It was fabled that Calisto, of whom Jupiter waa 
enamoured, was changed by the vengeful Juno into the Greater Bear. See 
her story related in the Second Book of Ovid's Fasti, 1. 153, et seq. She 
was a daughter of Lycaon, king of Arcadia, in which country there was a 
town and a mountain called by the name of Parrhasia, which waa said to 
Lave been derived from Parrhasus, a son of Lycaon. 

3 Of his kinsman, Cato) ver. 238. Servilia, the mother of Brutus, was 
the half-sister of Cato, they being the children of Livia, by different mar- 
riages. Brutus also married Porcia, the daughter of Cato. 

3 A polluted house) ver. 252. Sulpitius supposes "pollute, domus" to 
refer to acts of violation committed against the females of the families of 
those who consequently thirsted for vengeance. It may also mean, as sug- 
gested by one of the Scholiasts, that members of a family, having murdered 
the others, had become desperate, and resorted to civil war to screen their 
own offences. 

4 To be lost sight of) ver. 253. " Permiscenda." Literally, to be " min- 
gled," or " involved in ; " he here alludes to the debts of the extravagant 
and unprincipled. 



B. n. 258-281.] PHARSALIA. 61 

ners of a corrupt age ? This sole reward of thy long-prac- 
tised virtues shalt thou receive ; others the wars shall find 
thyself they shall make, guilty. O Gods of heaven, let 
not so much be allowed to the fatal arms as even to have 
moved these hands ; and let no javelins hurled by thy arms 
be borne in the dense cloud of weapons; nor let valour 
so great be thrown away on chance 1 . All the fortune of 
the war will rest itself on thee. Who shall be unwilling, 
although falling by the wound from another, to die by this 
sword, and for the crime to be thine own ? Better alone 
without arms wilt thou live in tranquil inactivity, just as the 
stars of heaven ever unmoved roll onward in their course. 
The air nearer to the earth is inflamed with the lightnings, 
and the lowermost regions of earth receive the winds and 
the flashing streaks of flame ; Olympus, by the will of the 
Gods, stands above the clouds. The least of things does 
discord disturb ; the highest enjoy peace. 

" How joyously will the ears of Caesar learn that a citizen 
so great has come forth to battle ! For that the rival camp 
of the chieftain Magnus has been preferred to his own he 
will never grieve. Too much does he please himself 2 , if 
civil war is pleasing to Cato. A large portion of the Senate 
and a Consul, about to wage war under a general a private 
person a , and other nobles as weh 1 , cause me anguish; to 
whom add Cato under the yoke of Pompey, then through- 
out the whole world Csesar alone will be free 4 . But if for 

1 Be thrown away on chance) ver. 263. " Nee tanta in casum virtus eat." 
There have been some doubts about the readings and meaning of this pas- 
sage. It probably means that Cato is not to throw away his wisdom and 
valour in a cause where the successful result will be sure to be solely attri- 
buted to the chances of war. 

2 Too much does he please himself) ver. 276. " Nimium placet ipse." It 
is a matter of doubt to whom " ipse " refers, whether to Cato or to Caesar. 
It most probably relates to Caesar, and if so, the meaning may be that 
Caesar will be extremely pleased with himself, if the Civil War which he has 
caused shall be pleasing to Cato ; if it refers to Cato, it may mean that 
Caesar will be receiving too high a compliment at the hands of Cato, if the 
latter takes part in the Civil War. 

3 Under a general a private person) ver. 279. The meaning is, " It 
grieves me to see the Senate and the Consul under the command of a general, 
merely a private person ;" it being the duty of the Consuls to wage war, and 
lead the armies of the state. 

4 Caesar alone will be free) ver. 281. Because Pompey, though general, 
would, in some degree, be under the control of the Senate. 



82 PHAESALIA. [B. n. 281-309. 

the laws of thy country it pleases thee to take up arms, and 
to defend liberty, already diou dost have Brutus the 
enemy neither of Pompey nor of Caesar, but after the war, 
of die conqueror." 

Thus he speaks. But Cato utters to him from his 
secret breast these hallowed words : " Brutus, I confess that 
civil warfare is wickedness in the extreme; but whither 
the fates lead, virtue with clear conscience shall follow. It 
shall be the crime of the Gods of heaven to have made even 
me guilty. ^Vho is able to look upon the stars and the 
world falling to ruin, void of fear himself ? Who, when 
the lofty sky is rushing downwards, the earth is quaking, 
the weight of the confused universe mingling together, 
can keep his hands folded in inactivity? Shall stranger 
nations follow the frenzy of Hesperia and the Bx>man 
wars, and Kings be led over the seas beneath other 
climes, and shall I alone live in inactivity? Far hence 
avert, O Gods of heaven, die frantic notion that Rome 
may fall, in its ruin to affect the Dahans 1 and the Getans, 
while I am free from care. As grief itself bids the parent 
bereaved by the death of his sons, to head the long fu- 
nereal procession to the tomb ; it gives him satisfaction to 
have thrust his hands amidst the blackening flames, and 
himself to have held the swarthy torches - in die heaped-up 
structure of die pile ; I will not be torn away, before, Bx>me, 
I shall have embraced thee lifeless, and Liberty, thy name, 
and shall have followed thy unsubstantial shade. So let it 
be ; let the unappeased Gods receive a full expiatory sacri- 
fice, of no blood let us defraud die warfare. And would diat 
it were possible for die Gods of heaven and of Erebus to ex- 
pose this head of mine condemned to every punishment ! 

" The hostile troops bore down die devoted Decius :1 ; me 

1 To */ect ike Dahans) ver. 296. The Dahae were a great nation of 
Scythia, who roamed at large in the country to the east of the Caspian (which 
from them still bears the name of Daghesan), on the banks of the Axus and 
the Jaxartes. They were famed for their skill as archers on horseback. 

* To have held the svmrthy torches) ver. 301. He alludes to the custom 
of the nearest relative of the deceased setting fire to the pile. 

3 Bore down the devoted Decius) ver. 308. It is impossible to say to 
which of the Decii he here refers, as two individuals of the name of P. De- 
cius Mus, father and son, devoted themselves to death for the Roman cause. 
The elder was commander jointly with T. Manlius Torquatus in the Latin 



B. n. 309-328.] PHABSALIA. 63 

let two armies assail, me let the barbarian multitude from 
the Rhine aim at with their darts ; may I, accessible, in the 
midst, receive from all the lances the wounds of the entire 
warfare. May this blood redeem the people; by my fate 
may it be atoned for, whatever the Roman manners have 
deserved to pay the penalty for. Why should the people 
ready for the yoke why should those desirous to endure a 
harsh sway, perish? Myself alone attack with the sword 
myself who in vain maintain our laws and empty rights ; this 
throat, this, will provide peace, and an end of their hard- 
ships for the nations of Hesperia ; after I am gone there is 
no need of war for him who wishes to reign. Why do we 
not then follow the standards of the state and Pompey as 
our leader ? And yet, if Fortune shall favour, it has been 
well ascertained that he as well promises himself the sway 
over the whole world. Let him conquer therefore, myself 
his soldier, that he may not suppose that for himself he 
has conquered." Thus he spoke, and he applied sharp 
incentives to his indignation and aroused the warm blood 
of the youth to too great fondness for civil war. 

In the meantime, Phoebus dispelling the chilly shades of 
night, the door, being knocked at, sent forth a sound; and 
the hallowed Marcia 1 entered in grief, having left the tomb 

War. Learning from a vision that the general of the one eide and the army 
of the other, were devoted to the Gods of the dead, he rushed into the 
thickest of the enemy, wearing the sacrificial dress, and was slain. Zonaras, 
however, says that he was slain, as a devoted victim, by a Iloman soldier. 
His son, who commanded the left wing of the Iloman army at the battle of 
Sentinum against the Gauls, resolved to imitate the example of his father, 
and dedicating himself and the army of the enemy to the Gods of the dead, 
he fell a sacrifice for his country. 

1 The hallowed Marcia) ver. 328. Marcia was the daughter of L. Mar- 
cius 1'hilippus, and wag the second wife of Cato. After she had borne him 
three children, he ceded her to hia friend Hortensius, with the sanction of 
her father. After the death of Hortensius she returned to Cato, and it was 
aneeringly remarked that Cato was not a loser, in a pecuniary way, by the 
transaction. In Dr. Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography, we 
find the following remarks on this transaction. " Heineccius infers, from 
the words of Plutarch, that Cato did not, according to the common belief, 
lend his wife, but that she was divorced from him by the ceremony of sale, 
and married to Hortensius. Heineccius quotes the case as an instance of a 
marriage contracted by ' coemptio,' and dissolved by ' remancipatio.' But 
it does not seem that Cato formally married her again after the death of Hor- 
tensius, though it appears that she returned to her former relation of wife." 



64 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 328-355. 

of Hortensius l ; once, a virgin, joined in wedlock to a better 
husband ; afterwards when, the price and the reward of wed- 
lock, her third progeny was bom, she in her pregnancy was 
given to fill another home with her offspring, destined to 
unite two houses by a mother's blood. But after she had 
enclosed hi the urn the last ashes, hurrying with tearful 
countenance, tearing her dishevelled hair, and beating her 
breast with repeated blows, and bearing the ashes of the 
tomb, not destined to please her husband in other guise, 
thus in sadness did she speak : 

" While I had in me the strengthening blood, while strength 
to endure a mother's pains, Cato, I performed thy com- 
mands, and pregnant, two husbands did I receive*. My 
vitals wearied and exhausted by child-bearing I now return, 
to no other husband to be handed over. Grant the unenjoyed 
ties of our former union; grant only the empty name of 
wedlock ; let it be allowed to inscribe on my tomb, ' Marcia, 
the wife of Cato ; ' nor let it be enquired as doubtful in 
remote posterity whether I abandoned my first marriage 
torch, repudiated or only transferred. Thou dost not receive 
me as a partner hi joyous circumstances : amid thy 
cares and to share thy griefs, do I come. Allow me to 
attend the camp. Why shall I be left hi the safety of 
peace, and Cornelia be near to the civic strife?" 

These words influenced the hero, and though the times 
were unsuited for wedlock, Fate now summoning him to 
the war, still a solitary union pleased him, and nuptials 
devoid of empty pomp, and the admission of the Gods 
alone 3 as witnesses of the solemnities. No festive garlands 
hang from the wreath-bound threshold, and no white fillet 4 

1 The tomb of Hortensius) ver. 328. Q. Hortensius was one of the most 
famous of the Roman Orators, and, for many years, the rival of Cicero. He 
had the adroitness to escape being enrolled on the lists of either the Marian 
or the Sullane faction, and died a natural death, B.C. 50, in his sixty -fourth 
year. He was noted for his luxurious habits, and at his death left 10,000 
casks of Chian wine to his heir. At the time when he took Marcia as his 
wife she was pregnant by Cato, her first husband. 

2 Pregnant, two husbands did I receive) ver. 339. In allusion to her 
pregnancy when married to Hortensius. 

8 Admission of the Gods alone) ver. 353. The Deities thus adjured as 
witnesses would probably be Jupiter, Juno, Venus, Suada, and Diana. 

4 No white fillet) ver. 355. " Infulae," or " fillets" of wool, were hung by 
the bride on the doorposts of the house of the bridegroom. 



B. II. 355-364.] PHARSALIA. 65 

runs along the two doorposts, nor are there the usual 
torches 1 , nor does the couch stand on high 2 with its ivory 
steps :i , or variegate its coverings with embroidered gold : 
and no matron, pressing her forehead with the turreted 
crown 4 , forbids her, with foot lifted over 5 , to touch the 
threshold. No saffron-coloured veil 6 lightly to hide the timid 
blushes of the bride, concealed her downcast features ; the 
girdle with its gems did not encircle her flowing robes 7 , no 
necklace her graceful neck 8 ; and no scanty under-tunic 9 , 

1 The usual torches) ver. 356. He alludes to the torches which were 
carried before the bride by boys dressed in the praetexta, when she was 
conducted to her husband's house. 

* Couch stand on high) ver. 357. He alludes to the " torus genialis," or 
marriage bed, which was generally placed in the " atrium," or great room 
on the ground floor of the Roman houses. 

3 With its ivory steps) ver. 357. The bedsteads used by the Romans 
were, in general, rather high, so that persons were in the habit of entering 
the bed by means of steps placed beside it, which Varro calls by the name 
of " scamnum." The bedsteads were sometimes made of metal or of costly 
wood, or else veneered with tortoise-shell or ivory. We find, from the present 
passage, that the " scamnum " was similarly ornamented. 

4 With the turreted crown) ver. 358. One of the Scholiasts states that a 
turreted crown was generally worn by the bride during the nuptial cere- 
monies. 

s With foot lifted over) ver. 359. When the procession arrived at the 
house of the bridegroom, the door of which was adorned with garlands and 
flowers, the bride was carried across the threshold by " pronubi," or men 
who had been married to but one woman, that she might not strike against 
it with her foot, which would be an evil omen. See the Casina of Plautus, 
Act iv. Sc. iv. 1. 1, 2. 

9 No saffron-coloured veil) ver. 361. The bridal veil which the bride 
wore was called " flammeum," and was of a bright yellow colour, which was 
also the colour of her shoes. 

7 Her flowing roles) ver. 362. The bride was dressed in a long white 
robe with a purple fringe, or adorned with ribands. This dress was called 
" tunica recta," and was bound round the waist with a girdle or zone. 

8 Jfo necklace her graceful neck) ver. 363. Necklaces were much worn in an- 
cient times by the Indians, Persians, and Egyptians. They were more especially 
used (as mentioned in the present instance) by the Greek and Roman females 
as bridal ornaments. The "monile baccatum," or " bead necklice," was the 
most common, being made of berries, glass, or other materials strung toge- 
ther, with thread, silk, wire, or hooks of gold. Emeralds were used for a 
similar purpose, and amber was much employed. Thus Ovid says in the 
second Book of the Metamorphoses, 1. 366, that the amber distilled from 
the trees, into which the sisters of Phaeton were changed, was sent to be 
worn by the Latian matrons. 

9 No scanty under-tunic) ver. 364. The " supparus," or " supparum," is 

F 



66 THABSALIA. [u. n. 364-383. 

clinging to the lower part of the shoulders, enveloped her 
bared arms. Even so, just as she was, she preserved the 
mournful ensign* of the garb of woe, and in the way in 
which hor sons, in the same her husband, did she embrace. 
Covered by the funereal wool the purple was concealed. None 
of the wonted jests 1 acted their merry part, nor after the 
Sabine usage '' did the sorrowing husband receive the festive 
taunts. No pledges of the house 3 , no relations met to- 
gether. They were united in silence, and contented with 
the auspices of Brutus. Nor did Cato remove the grim long 
hair from his hallowed face, or admit of joyousness on his 
rigid features. 

Since first he had beheld the deadly arms upraised, he 
had allowed the unshorn white hair to descend upon his 
rugged brow and the woeful beard to grow upon his cheeks. 
Because, forsooth, he had leisure for one thing alone free 
from factions and from hate to weep for mankind. Nor 
were the ties of their former connexion renewed ; his con- 
tinence 4 withheld from even lawful love. These were the 
manners, this was the unswerving rule of the rigid Cato ; to 
observe moderation, and to adhere to his end ; to follow the 
guidance of nature, and to lay down his life for his country; 
and not "to believe himself born for himself, but for the 

said by Fcstus to have been made of linen, and to have been the same as 
the " sulmcula," or under tunic ; but Varro says that it was an outer gar- 
ment, and contrasts it with the " subucula," which he derives from " subter," 
"under,' while "supparus" he derives from "supra," "over." Judging from 
the present passage, it appears to have been an outer garment, which left the 
arms and shoulders bare. It was, perhaps, peculiar to the nuptial cere- 
mony. 

1 None of (he wonted jests) ver. 368. He alludes to the Fescennine verses 
which, full of broad jests and railleries, were sung at the door of the bridal 
apartment, by girls, when the other persons had left. These verses were 
also called epithalamia. Ovid relates a curious story, by way of 
accounting for the origin of this custom. See the Fasti, B. iii. 1. 675, 
(t .<'/. 

* Nor after the Sabine usage) ver. 369. The custom of singing these 
songs, and of joking the bridegroom on this occasion, was laid to have been 
derived from the Sabines. 

* No pledges of the home) ver. 370. "Pignora," "pledges," or "ties," 
meaning relations or children. 

4 His continence withheld) ver. 378. Shortly after his reunion with 
Marcia Cato fled from Koine, but left her there to protect his property and 
interests. 



B. n. 383-405.] PHARSALIA. 67 

whole world. To subdue hunger was a banquet to him, and 
to keep away by a mere roof the winter's cold, an opulent 
abode ; to wrap a shaggy toga around his limbs, after the 
manner of the Koman follower of Quirinus 1 , was a costly 
robe ; to him, too, the especial object of sexual desire was 
offspring ; he was the City's husband 2 , and the City's sire ; 
a worshipper of justice, an observer of strict honor ; he was 
a good man for the common weal: and upon none of Gate's 
deeds did pleasure, born but for herself, make inroad and 
exact her share. 

In the mean tune, Magnus departing with the hastening 
throng, took possession of the Campanian walls of the Dar- 
danian colonist 3 . This seat of war was to his mind, for 
him, exerting all his might, thence to spread abroad his 
scattered party to meet the foe, where with its shady hills 
Apennine raises on high the mid part of Italy, than which 
no land swells with its peaks to a loftier height, or approaches 
more nigh to Olympus. The mountain hi the midst ex- 
tends itself between the two waters of the Lower and the 
Upper sea 4 ; and on the one side does Pisa, that, with its 
shallows, breaks the Etrurian waves, on the other, Ancona, 
opposed to the Dalmatian billows, bound the mountain 
ridges. 

From vast sources does it produce boundless streams, 
and extend its rivers along the space that separates the two 
seas. On the left side descend both the swift Metaurus 5 , 

1 Follower of Quirinus) ver. 386. "Quiritis" here means one of the 
lower classes of the people in the city which had been founded by Quirinus 
or Romulus, and not, as some have supposed, one of the ancient Romans in 
contradistinction to those of the more modern Rome. 

3 He -was the City's husband) ver. 388. The whole state received from him 
the affections of a father and a husband. 

3 Campanian -walls of the Dardanian colonist) ver. 393. Capua, the 
capital of Campania, was said to have been founded by Capys, one of the 
Trojans who accompanied JJneas from Troy. See Virgil's JEneid, B. z. 
1. 145. 

4 The Lower and the Upper sea) ver. 400. The Adriatic, or the Lower, 
and the Etrurian, or the Higher, Sea. He is speaking of that part of Italy 
where Pisa is on the coast on the Etrurian side, and Ancona, which is 
somewhat more southerly, on the Adriatic. Ancona is opposite the coast 
of Dalmatia, whence the expression " obnoxia fluctibus Dalmaticis." 

* The swift Metaurus) ver. 405. This was the name of two rivers of 
Italy, one of which was a small river of Umbria, now called the Metaro, 
flowing into the Adriatic Sea, and rendered memorable by the defeat and 

F 2 



68 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 406-422. 

and the rapid Crustumium 1 , and the Sapis 2 uniting with 
the Isaurus ', and the Sena 4 , the Aufidus*, too, that beats 
the Adriatic waves ; and, (into a river more vast than which 
no region dissolves itself,) the Eridanus rolls down disman- 
tled forests into the main, and by its waters empties Hesperia 
of streams. The story is, that this river 7 was the first to 
shade its banks with a poplar crown ; and that, when 
Phaeton, his bounds overstepped, bringing headlong down- 
wards the light of day, set the skies on fire with his blazing 
reins, the streams throughout the scorched earth being 
swept away, this one had waves equal to quenching the fires 
of Phoebus. Not less is it than the Nile, if the Nile did 
not lie stagnant far and wide over the flat surface of level 
Egypt, the Libyan sands. Nor less is it than the Ister, except 
that while the Ister flows through the globe, it receives 
streams that might have fallen as rivers into any seas what- 
ever, and not by itself is discharged into the Scythian waves. 
The waters that seek the right-hand declivities of the 
mountain range form the Tiber, and the Kutuba 8 in its 

death of Hasdrubal, the brother of Hannibal, on its banks, B.C. 207. The 
second, now called the Marro, was .1 stream on the east coast of Bruttium. 
The " laevum latus," or " left side," here mentioned, is the Adriatic. 

1 Rapid Crustumium) ver. 406. The Crustumium was a river falling 
into the Adriatic, near the town of Aiiimnum. 

* And the Sapis) ver. 406. The Sapis, now called the Savio, was a small 
river of Gallia Cisalpina, rising in the Apennines, and flowing into the 
Adriatic, south of Ravenna. 

3 With, the Isaurus) ver. 406. This river was also called the Fisaurus, 
and, flowing through Umbria, falls into the Adriatic. It is now called La 
Foglia. 

4 And the Send) ver. 407. The Sena was a small river of Umbria, which 
flowed past the town of Senogallia, founded by the Galli Senones. It it now 
called La Nevola. 

4 The A ufidus) ver. 407. The Aufidus, now called the Ofanto, was the 
principal river of Apulia. It rose in the territory of the Hirpini in Samnium, 
flowing at first with a rapid current, and then more slowly into the Adriatic. 

' The Eridanus rolls down) ver. 409. Eridanus, also called the Padus, 
now the Po, flows into the Adriatic near the city of Ravenna. 

7 The story is, that this river) ver. 410. He refers to the tradition which 
stated that, when Phaeton was smitten by the thunderbolts of Jupiter, he 
fell into the river Eridanus or Padus, and his sisters Phaethusa, Lampetie, 
and Phoebe, the Naiads of Italy, were changed into poplars on its banks. 
See the story in the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. ii. 1. 325, el seq. 

8 And the Rutuba) ver. 422. The Rutuba, now the Roya, is a small 
river on the coaat of Liguria, which flows between very high banks. 



B. n. 422-430.] PHARSALIA 69 

cavities. Thence downward glide both the swift Vulturnus ', 
and the Sarnus 2 , the producer of night-like mists, and the 
Liris :i impelled by the Vestine waters 4 through the 
realms of shady Marica 5 , and the Siler , skimming along 
the cultivated fields of Salernum 7 ; the Macra 8 , too, which 
in its shallows admits of no barks, runs into the sea of 
neighbouring Luna. Where, extending still beyond, it rises 
with its ridges elevated in the air, it beholds the Gallic 
fields, and looks down upon the declining Alps. Then, fer- 
tile for the Umbrians 9 and the Marsians 10 , and subdued by 

1 The swift Vultiimus) ver. 423. The Vulturnus, now called Volturno, was 
the chief river of Campania, rising in the Apennines in Samnium, and falling 
into the Etrurian sea. 

2 And Ike Sarnus) ver. 424. The Sarnus, now called Sarno, is a river 
of Campania, flowing by Nuceria, and falling into the sea at Puteoli 
near Pompeii. Being in the vicinity of Mount Vesuvius, its mephitic va- 
pours here alluded to were probably owing to the action of that volcano. 

3 And the Liris) ver. 424. The Liris, more anciently called the Clanis, 
and now the Garigliano, is one of the principal rivers of Central Italy, rising 
in the Apennines and flowing into the bay of Caieta near Minturnae, at the 
boundary between Latium and Campania. Horace speaks of the " quieta 
aqua," " the placid waters " of the Liris. 

4 Impelled by the Vestine waters) ver. 425. The Vestini were a Sabellian 
race of Central Italy, lying between the Apennines, and the Adriatic Sea. 

5 Of shady Marica) ver. 424. Marica was a nymph of Latium, who 
was worshipped at Minturnse, and had a sacred grove on the banks of 
the river Liris. Virgil mentions her as being the mother of Latinus by 
Faunus. Servius remarks, that some considered her identical with Aphro- 
dite, and others with Circe. 

* And the Siler) ver. 426. The Siler, now called the Silaro, was a river of 
lower Italy, forming the boundary between Lucania and Campania. Rising 
in the Apennines it falls into the Etrurian Sea, north of Paestum. 

7 Fields of Salernum) ver. 425. Salernum, now called Salerno, was an 
ancient town of Campania, on the bay of Paestum. It was made a Roman 
colony B.C. 194, but attained a greater prosperity in the middle ages, when 
a College of Health was established there. 

8 The Macra) ver. 426. The Macra, now called the Magra, was a 
small river rising in the Apennines, and discharging itself into the Ligurian 
Sea, near Luna. As here stated by the Poet, it was unnavigable for ships. 

9 Fertile for tlie Umbrians) ver. 430. He speaks of a former time, when, 
before the rise of Rome, Italy was inhabited by the Umbri, the Marsi, and 
the Sabines. The Umbri were one of the most ancient nations of Italy, 
and at the same time very powerful ; their country, which was afterwards 
that called Etruria, extending across the peninsula from the Adriatic to the 
Etrurian Sea. The Umbrians were subdued by the Romans B.C. 307. 

10 And the Marsians) ver. 430. The Marsi were a brave and warlike 
people of Central Italy, in the high lands surrounded by the Apennines, near 



TO PHARSALIA. f> n. 430-440. 

the Sabine ploughshare ', embracing with its pine-clad rocks 
all the native races of Latium, it deserts not Hesperia 
before it is cut short by the waves of Scylla 2 , and extends 
its rocks to the Lacinian temples 11 ; longer than Italy, until 4 
the sea pressing on cut short its boundaries, and the ocean 
forced back the land. But after the earth was separated by 
the two seas, the extremity of the range ended in Sicilian 
Pelorus \ 

Caesar, furious for war, is not pleased at 6 having a way 

Lake Fucinus. Marruvium was their chief town. Being probably acquainted 
with the medicinal qualities of many plants, they acquired the reputation 
among their Italian neighbours of being magicians, and were said to have 
descended from Circe, the enchantress. 

1 By the Sabine ploughshare) ver. 430. The Sabini were an ancient and 
powerful race in Central Italy, situate at the foot of the Apennines, and 
extending to the confines of Lucania and Apulia. The term " Sabellas," at 
in the present instance, is often applied to the Sabines, though properly this 
race was divided into three classes, the Sabini, the Sabelli, and the Sam- 
nites. The Marsi were, properly speaking, a tribe of the Sabelli. 

4 Waves of Scylla) ver. 433. Scylla was a dangerous whirlpool lying 
between the coasts of Italy and Sicily. 

* To the Lacinian temples) ver. 434. Lacinium, or Lacinia, was a Pro- 
montory on the eastern coast of Bruttium, a few miles south of Croton, and 
forming the western boundary of the Tarentine Gulf. It had a celebrated 
Temple of Juno, who was worshipped here under the surname of Lacinia. 
The Temple was situate on the Promontory, and the remains of it are still 
extant. The spot is said, by one of the Scholiasts, to have taken iU name 
from Lacinius, a robber, who was slain there by Hercules. 

4 Longer than Italy, until) ver. 435. He means that the Apennines were 
nee longer in extent than the present Italy, at the time when Sicily was 
not broken off from Italy by the intervening sea, and these mountains ran 
through it as far as Pelorus. 

* Sicilian Pelonu) ver. 438. Pelorus was a Promontory, or mountain, 
forming the north-east angle of Sicily. The common story was, that it 
received its name from the pilot of Hannibal, who was slain and buried 
there ; but, unfortunately for the truth of the story, it is called by this name 
by Thucydides long before the time of Hannibal. 

" /* not pleased at) ver. 439. Owing to the peculiar manner in which 
Lucan makes use of the conjunctions copulative and negative, this passage 
may be translated in two different ways, of exactly opposite meaning : 
" Caesar, most anxious for civil war, is not pleased at making his way with- 
out effusion of blood, and is not pleased at marching through the Italian 
territories free from an enemy, and at not being able to sally forth against 
the fields in hostile form." This is the translation suggested by Sulpitius, 
Ascensius, and Farnabius, and approved of by Weise, Grotius, &c. Cortius, 
however, would render it, " Caesar, most anxious for civil war, is pleased at 
Dot making his way, except with' effusion of blood, and at not marching 



B. ii. 440-459.] PHAESALIA. 71 

otherwise than by the shedding of blood, and that he cannot 
lay waste the limits of Hesperia now free from an enemy, 
and rush down upon the deserted fields, and he would not 
lose the advantage of his march 1 , and would be leading on 
force hand to hand with force. It delights him not so 
much to enter the opening gates, as to have broken them 
down ; nor so much for the fields to be ploughed by the 
submitting husbandman, as if the land were laid waste with 
fire and sword. By paths permitted he is reluctant to pro- 
ceed, and to appear to be a fellow-citizen. Then the cities 
of Latium, hi doubt, and wavering with varying party feel- 
ings, although about to yield at the first alarm of the 
approaching warfare, still with stout ramparts strengthen 
their walls, and surround them on every side with the deep 
trench. Round masses of stone, too, and darts which may 
be hurled from above against the foe, they provide upon the 
lofty towers of the walls. 

The multitude is more favourable to Magnus, and attach- 
ment struggles with threatening terror ; just as when the 
south wind, with his dread-sounding blasts, possesses the 
sea, him do all the billows follow : if again the earth 2 , 
loosened by the stroke of the JSolian trident, sends forth 
the eastern gales over the swelling waves, although swept 
by this fresh one, the billows still retain the effects of the 
former wind, and while the heavens give way to the eastern 

through the Italian territories free from an enemy, and at being able to sally 
forth tigainst the fields in hostile form," The first is probably the correct 
translation, for Weise very justly asks, where were the persons to defend the 
fields'? It is notorious, on the other hand, that the only partizans of Pompey 
and the Senate were shut up in the fortified towns of Italy. Besides, the 
first mode of translation would tend to blacken the character of Caesar, as 
making him(though contrary to the real fact), gratuitously a lover of bloodshed, 
which is quite consistent with the design of Lucan throughout the work. 
This is the more clear, as we find that the march of Caesar through the 
boundaries of Italy was unimpeded, for Pompey had withdrawn his forces 
to the south, and awaited him in Campania. 

1 Would not lose the advantage of his march) ver. 442. "Non perdat iter." 
" Would not wish to lose the benefit of a march, as though through an enemy's 
country, and thereupon gaining the opportunity of gathering spoil as he 
proceeds." 

* If again the earth) ver. 456. He probably means the land of Strongyle, 
now Stromboli, one of the Liparian or jEolian Islands, off the coast of Italy, 
where /Kolus, the God of the Winds, was said to have his abode. See the 
JEneid of Virgil, B. i. 1. 51, et seq. 



72 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 453-467. 

winds sweeping along the clouds, the waves still obey the 
southern gales. But terror was able readily to change their 
feelings, and fortune swayed their wavering attachment. 

The Etrurian race was left defenceless by the flight of 
frightened Libo ', and now, Thermus repulsed a , Umbria 
lost the disposal of itself. Nor with his father's auspices 
did Sulla wage the civic warfare :1 , turning his back, on 
hearing the name of Caesar. Varus, when 4 the approach- 
ing troops attacked Auximum 5 , rushing through the 

1 Flight of frightened Lilo) ver. 462. Scribonius Libo was the father-in- 
law of Sextus Pompeius, the son of Pompey the Great He was entrusted 
with the command of Etruria, but on the rapid approach of Caesar, forsook 
his charge and hastened to join the Consuls in Campania. Augustus after- 
wards married his sister, Scribonia, and he was Consul with M. Antony in 
the year B.C. 34. It is not known at what time he died. 

2 Now, Thermus repulsed) ver. 463. Caesar says, in his History of the 
Civil War, B. i. ch. 12: "In the meantime, being informed that Thermus, 
the Praetor, was in possession of Iguvium [an important city of Umbria], with 
five cohorts, and was fortifying the town, but that the feelings of all the in- 
habitants were very well inclined towards himself, be detached Curio, with 
three cohorts, which he had at Ariminum and Pisaurus. Upon notice of 
his approach, Thermus, distrusting the affections of the townsmen, drew his 
cohorts out of it, and made his escape ; his soldiers deserted him on the 
road, and returned home." This was Q. Minutius Thermus, formerly Pro- 
praetor in Asia. After the death of Pompey, he followed the fortunes of 
his son Sextus, but finally deserted him, B.C. 35, and went over to M. 
Antony. 

3 Did Sulla wage the civic warfare) ver. 465. This was Faustus Cornelius 
Sulla, a son of the Dictator, by his fourth wife, Caecilia Metella. He was 
the son-in-law of Pompey, and, joining his party, crossed over into Greece, 
on the approach of Caesar. Being taken prisoner by Caesar after the battle 
of Thapsus, he was murdered in a tumult of the soldiers, in the victor's camp. 

4 Varus, when) ver. 46ti. This was P. Attius Varus, a zealoas partizan of 
Pompey in the Civil War. When Pompey left Italy, he crossed over to 
Africa, which, with the assistance of Juba, he subdued for the Pompeian 
party. He afterwards burnt several of Caesar's ships at Adrumetum. Join- 
ing Cneius Pompeius in Spain, he was defeated in a naval battle by C. Didius. 
He fell at the battle of Munda, and his head, with that of Labienus, was 
carried to Caesar. 

* Attacked Auximum) ver. 466. Auximum was a large town of Picenum, 
and a Roman colony. Caesar thus relates the present circumstance in his 
Civil War, B. i. c. 13 : "On news of Caesar's approach, the senate of Auxi- 
mum went in a body to Attius Varus, and told him that it was not a subject 
for them to determine upon, yet neither they nor the rest of the freemen 
were willing that Caius Caesar, a general who had merited so well of the 
state, after performing such great achievements, should be excluded from their 
town and walls ; wherefore he ought to pay some regard to the opinion of 



B. ii. 467-477.] PHAKSALIA. 73 

walls J on the opposite side, his rear neglected, flies where are 
the woods, where are the rocks. Lentulus is driven 2 from 
the citadel of Asculum 3 . The victor presses upon them re- 
treating, and draws over the troops ; and alone out of a force 
so great the commander escapes, and standards that escort 
no cohorts 4 . Thou, too, Scipio, dost forsake the deserted 
citadel of Nuceria 3 , entrusted to thy charge; although a 
most hardy youthful band is posted in this camp, some 
time before withdrawn from Ceesar's arms by reason of the 
Parthian panic ; with which Magnus reinstated the Gallic 
losses, and, whilst he himself summoned them to the war- 
fare, gave to his father-in-law the loan of Eoman blood. 

posterity, and his own danger. Alarmed at this declaration, Attius Varus 
drew out of the town the garrison he had placed there, and fled. A few of 
Caesar's front rank having pursued him, obliged him to halt, and when the 
battle began, Varus was deserted by his troops, some of whom dispersed to 
their homes, and the rest came over to Caesar." 

1 Rushing through the walls} ver. 467. By the mention of his mode of 
escape, it is not improbable that Lucan has confounded Attius Varus with C. 
Attius the Pelignian, who, on the approach of Caesar, leaped from the walls 
of Sulmo with the intention of-escaping. 

2 Lentulus is driven) ver. 469. This was P. Cornelius Lentulus Spinther, 
the Consul, who afterwards joined Pompey in Greece, and fled with him to 
the isle of Rhodes. His subsequent fate is not known. 

3 Citadel of Asculum) ver. 469. This was Asculum, a town of Picenum ; 
it was a Roman municipium. There was another town in Apulia of the 
same name. Caesar thus mentions this circumstance in his Civil War, B. i. 
c. 15: " In the meantime, the twelfth legion came to join Caesar; with 
these two he marched to Asculum, the chief town of Picenum. Lentulus 
Spinther occupied that town with ten cohorts ; but on being informed of 
Csesar's approach, he fled from the town, and in attempting to bring off his 
cohorts with him, was deserted by a great part of his men." 

4 That escort no cohorts) ver. 471. This was not the case, as some of his 
men still remained with him, whom he added shortly afterwards to the forces 
of Vibullius Rufus, the Pompeian partizan. 

8 The citadel of Nuceria) ver. 473. Nuceria, sometimes called " Luceria," 
was a town of Apulia, on the borders of Samnium. It was situate on a 
steep hill, and had a Temple of Minerva. This was now held by L. Scipio, 
the father-in-law of Pompey. In reference to the preceding passage, Mar- 
cellus, for the purpose probably of weakening Ccesar, had prevailed on the 
Senate to make a decree that Csesar should give up one legion and Pompey 
another, which they pretended to be about to send to the Parthian war. In 
obedience to this decree, Caesar delivered to Bibulus one legion as his own, 
and another which had formerly been raised and lent to him by Pompey, to 
supply the great loss which he had sustained by the defeat of his legates, Titurius 
and Cotta. These legions were now with Scipio in the town of Nuceria. 



74 PHABSALIA. [B. n. 478-499. 

But thee, valiant Domitius 1 , the abodes of Corfinium 2 , 
surrounded by strong walls, receive ; those recruits, which 
once were placed around the polluted Milo, obey thy 
trumpet's call. When he beheld afar an immense cloud 
arising on the plain, and the ranks shining with weapons 
glittering in the glistening sun, " Run down, my comrades," 
said he, " to the banks of the river, and sink the bridge 
under water ; and thou, stream, now come forth, in all thy 
strength, from thy mountain sources, and collect together 
all the waters, that with thy foaming tide, thou mayst, the 
structure broken, bear off the alder timbers. At this line 
let the war come to a stand ; upon these banks let the foe at 
his leisure take his ease. Put a check upon the headlong 
leader ; Caesar first coming to a stop at this spot shall be 
to us a victory." 

No more having said, he leads down from the walls his 
active band, in vain. For when first, from the plains, the 
river set at liberty 3 , Caesar beheld his passage being cut off, 
excited by boiling indignation, lie said, "Is it not enough 
to have sought a lurking-place for your cowardice within 
walls? Do you close up the plains, ye cowards, and attempt 
to keep me hi check with streams? Not, if Ganges with 
his swelling tide were to separate me, should Ccesar now 
come to a stand at any river, after the waters of Rubicon. 
Hasten on, ye squadrons of horse ; onward, too, ye foot ; 

1 Thee, valiant Domitius) ver. 479. L. Domitius Ahenobarbus was one of 
the most active opponents of Pompey and Caesar on their coalition, and fol- 
lowed the opinions of Cato, whose sister Forcia he had married. He after- 
ward* became more closely allied with Fompey. Being abandoned by Pompey, 
he was obliged by his soldiers to surrender Corfinium ; on which, offended at 
the remissness of his leader, he retired to Massilia, which he defended 
against Caesar. He afterwards joined Pompey in Thessaly, and was slain at 
the battle of Pharsalia, where he commanded the left wing. Cicero asserts 
in his Second Philippic, that he fell by the hand of M. Antony. 

3 The abodes of Corfinium) ver. 478. Corfinium was the chief town of 
the Peligni in Samnium : it is now called Popolo. Ahenobarbus had gar- 
risoned it with twenty cohorts, among which were those soldiers who had 
enclosed the Forum when Milo was arraigned for the death of Clodius. He 
sent five cohorts to break down the bridge of the river, which was three 
miles from the town, but these, meeting the advance-guard of Caesar's army, 
were repulsed. See the Civil War of Caesar, B. L c. 16. 

3 The river set at liberty) rer. 492. " Amne solute." " The river being 
about to be let loose," or " set free," as it were, by reason of the bridge 
being in the act of being broken down. 



B. n. 499-512.] PHARSALIA. 75 

ascend the bridge about to fall ! " When this had been 
said, the light horsemen gave full rein along the plain, 
and their stalwart arms hurled the darts to the opposite 
bank, much like a shower thickly falling. Caesar enters 
upon 1 the stream left vacant, its guard being put to flight, 
and is brought safe to the citadel of the enemy. 

And now he was erecting towers to discharge vast masses, 
and the mantelet 2 had moved on beneath the midst of the 
walls ; when lo ! a crime in warfare 3 , the gates being opened, 
the troops dragged forth their captive chief, and before 
the feet of his haughty fellow-citizen he stood. Still, his 
features contemptuously scowling, with undaunted neck did 
his high-born courage demand the sword. Csesar was aware 
both that punishment was wished for and that pardon was 
dreaded 4 . " Live on," said he 5 , " although thou art unwill- 

1 Caesar enters upon) ver. 503. It is hard to say whether "ingreditur" 
here means that he crossed the river by the bridge, or that, disdaining 
the bridge, he forded it with his troops. Caesar, however, in the Civil 
War, B. i. c. 16, speaks of marching his legions " over," so that a passage 
by the bridge is probably meant. 

2 And the mantelet) ver. 506. The " vinese," which were similar to what 
are called " mantelets " in modern warfare, were roofs or sheds, under 
which the besiegers protected themselves from the darts, stones, and fires 
hurled from the walls of the besieged town on the assailants. The roof 
and sides were formed of wicker-work, while planks, covered with wet cloth 
or raw hides, also supported the sides. They were on light frames, and were 
either carried or wheeled by the soldiers to the walls. They received their 
name from their resemblance to a leafy bower, formed by the branches of vines. 

3 A crime in warfare) ver. 507. According to Caesar (Civil War, B. i. 

C. 19, 20), the facts were these : Domitius, having sent to Pompey for aid, 
received an answer that Pompey would not encounter the risk of relieving 
him, as he had retreated to Corfinium without his own advice or consent, and 
that if any opportunity should offer, he, Domitius, was to come to Pompey 
with his whole force. On this, Domitius determined on escaping from the 
town, imparting his design to a few of his friends. His intentions becoming 
suspected, his troops mutinied, and, seizing him, sent dispatches to Cassar, to 
say that they were ready to deliver the town and Domitius into his hands. 

* That pardon was dreaded) ver. 511. According to some accounts, Domi- 
tius had endeavoured to poison himself on being about to fall in the hands of 
Caesar, but his physician only gave him a sleeping potion. 

8 Live on, said he) ver. 512. Caesar says that Lentulus Spinther inter- 
ceded with him for the lives of Domitius and the other nobles taken at Cor- 
tinium, on which the conqueror replied that he had not left his Province to 
injure any one, but to protect himself against the malice of his enemies, and 
to restore the Tribunes of the people, who had been expelled from the City. 
He not only dismissed Domitius, but even returned him sixty sestertia, 



76 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 512-640. 

ing ; and by my bounty behold the light of day. To the 
conquered faction now let there be bright hopes, and the 
example of myself; even if it pleases thee try arms once 
more ; and nothing for this pardon do I stipulate, if thou 
shalt be overcome." 

He thus speaks, and orders the chains to be loosened on 
his tightened hands. Alas! even his murder perpetrated, 
how much more becomingly might Fortune have spared a 
Roman's shame ; to whom it is the very greatest of punish- 
ments, to be pardoned because he has followed the camp of 
his country and Magnus for his leader, and the whole of the 
Senate. He, undismayed, checks his heavy wrath, and to 
himself he says, " And wilt thou repair, degenerate man, to 
Rome, and the retreats of peace? Dost thou not prepare 
to go into the midst of the frenzy of war, destined soon to 
die ? Rush on assured, and burst asunder all delay to 
losing thy life, and thus be rid of Caesar's gift." 

In the meantime, not aware of the chieftain being taken, 
Magnus was preparing arms, that, with strength inter- 
mingled, he might recruit his party. And now, on the 
ensuing day, about to order the trumpet to sound, and 
thinking that the resentment of the soldiers about to move 
might be ascertained, with a voice moving veneration he 
addressed the silent cohorts : "0 avengers of crimes, and 
who have followed the preferable standards, O truly Roman 
band, to whom the Senate has given arms in no private 
cause ', in your aspirations demand the fight. With ruthless 
ravages the fields of Hesperia glow ; along the icy Alps is 
poured forth the Gallic rage '-' ; already has blood touched 
the polluted swords of Caesar. Well have the Gods provided, 
that we were the first to endure the casualties of war On 
their side let the criminality commence. 

"Now, e'en now, myself the umpire, let Rome seek 
punishment and vengeance. Nor indeed is it right for 
these to be called real battles, but j atJier the wrath of an 

though he knew that it was a sum originally provided to pay the adherents of 
Pompey. See the Civil War, B. i. c. 22, 23. 

1 In no private cause) ver. 533. " Non privata," " in no private cause," 
lie having been enjoined to undertake the war against Caesar on behalf of 
the state. 

1 The Gallic rage) yer. 535. In allusion to the Gallic forces who accom- 
panied Caesar. 



B. n. 540-548.] PHARSALIA. 77 

avenging country. No more is this a war than when 
Catiline prepared x the torches to blaze amid the houses, 
and Lentulus the partner in his fury, and the frantic band 
of Cethegus, with his naked shoulders ~. O frenzy of the 
leader greatly to be pitied ! When, Caesar, the Fates could 
wish to enrol thee among the Camilli 3 and the great Me- 
telli 4 , among the Cinnse 5 and the Marii dost thou come. 
Assuredly thou shalt be laid prostrate, as by Catulus Le- 
pidus fell 6 , and Carbo, who, submitting 7 to my axe, is buried 

1 When Catiline prepared) ver. 541. He alludes to the intended rebel- 
lion of L. Sergins Catilina, when, in conjunction with P. Cornelius Lentulus 
Sura, who had lost his seat in the Senate, and other conspirators, he had 
destined the City of Rome to the flames. Information of the conspiracy was 
given to Cicero, who took instant measures to quell it ; on which, Catiline 
and others left the City, and, raising an army, waged open war against the 
state. He was defeated by M. Petreius, and was slain in battle fighting 
with desperate courage. 

2 Cethegus, with his naked shoulders) ver. 543. He alludes to an ancient 
fashion which seems to have prevailed among the Cethegi, of wearing the 
arms bare. Horace, in his Art of Poetry, 1. 50, refers to the same custom. 
The person here mentioned was C. Cornelius Cethegus, one of the most aban- 
doned of the associates of Catiline. It was to have been his part to murder 
the leading Senators. He was, however, arrested, and put to death, the evi- 
dence against him being the swords and daggers which he had collected in 
his house. 

a Among the Camilli) ver. 544. He, no doubt, though using the plural 
number, refers more especially to M. Furius Camillus, the patriotic Dictator, 
and the deliverer of Rome from Gallic bondage. 

* And the great Metelli) ver. 545. He probably alludes in particular to 
L. Caecilius Metellus, who, when Consul, successfully opposed the Carthagi- 
nians in the first Punic war. When high priest, he rescued the Palladium 
from the Temple of Vesta when on fire, but lost his sight in consequence ; he 
was therefore allowed the privilege, previously granted to no one, of riding 
to the Senate-house in a chariot, and was rewarded with a statue in the 
Capitol. 

* Among the Cinnce) ver. 546. He alludes to L. Cornelius Cinna, the 
partizan of Marius, who endeavoured to recall Marius to Rome when in ba- 
nishment in Africa. He at length succeeded in regaining power, and became 
Consul jointly with Marius, when he distinguished himself by his cruelty. 
He was finally slain by his own troops when marching against Sulla. 

6 By Catulus Lepidus fell) ver. 547. M. ^iniilius Lepidus, the father of 
the Triumvir, being declared by the Senate an enemy to the state, collected 
an army in Etruria, and marched against Rome. Here he was defeated in 
the Campus Martius by Pompey and Catulus, and fled with the remainder of 
his troops to Sardinia, where he was again repulsed, and is supposed to have 
died of grief. 

7 Carbo, who, submitting) ver. 548. Cn. Papirius Carbo was one of the leaders 



78 PHAKSALIA. [B. n. 548-561. 

in a Sicilian sepulchre, Sertorius, too 1 , who, an exixe, 
aroused the fierce Iberians. And yet, if there is any 
belief in me, I grudge, Csesar, to add thee as well to 
these, and that Rome has opposed my hands to thee in thy 
madness. 

" Would that Crassus had returned safe after the battles 
of the Parthians, and victorious from the regions of Scythia, 
that thou mightst fall by a like cause to that by which 
the foeman Spartacus fell-. If the Gods of heaven have 
ordained that thou as well shalt be added to my titles of 
triumph, mighty is my right arm at hurling the javelin ; this 
glowing blood has again waxed warm around my heart; 
thou shalt learn, that not all who could submit to peace are 
cowards in war. Although he styles me enfeebled and worn 
out, let not my age alarm you. In this camp let the chief 
be more aged :< , so long as the soldier is more aged in that. 

of the Marian faction. He conducted the war in Cisalpine Gaul and Spain 
against the generals of Sulla, and with Norbanus was finally defeated near 
Faventia, in Italy, by Metellns. He fled first to Africa and thence to Sicily. 
Going thence to the isle of Cossyra, near Malta, he was taken prisoner by 
the emissaries of Pompey. He was brought in chains to Pompey at Lily- 
bseum, in Sicily, who, after rebuking him, had his head struck off, which he 
gent to Sulla. 

1 Sertorius, too) ver. 549. Q. Sertorins, one of the most gallant 
of the Romans, though fully sensible of the faults of Marins, his old com- 
mander, espoused his cause against the aristocratic party. Though he com- 
manded one of the four armies which besieged Rome under Marius and 
Ginna, he was entirely averse to the bloodshed which ensued. Long after 
the death of Marius he asserted his own independence in Spain, and for 
many years kept the forces of Pompey and Metellus at bay, and destroyed a 
great portion of their troops. He was assassinated, B.C. 72, by Perperna and 
some others of his officers, who had long been jealous of him. Regardless 
of his merits, Lucan unjustly quotes him as an instance of the prowess of 
Pompey having dealt retribution against rebellion. 

* The foeman Spartacut felt) ver. 554. Spartacus was a Thracian by birth, 
and originally a shepherd, then a soldier, and afterwards a leader of banditti. 
Being taken prisoner, he was sold to a trainer of gladiators. Regaining his 
freedom, he headed his fellow slaves, and defeated several of the Roman 
armies. After a successful career, M. Licinius Crassus, the Roman Praetor, 
was appointed to the command of the war against him, and, after gaining 
several advantages, defeated him at the river Silarus in a decisive battle, in 
which Spartacus was skin. 

3 Let the chief be more aged) ver. 561. Alluding to his being the 
senior of Caesar, while Caesar had the veterans in his camp, and he himself 
a larger number of young recruits. 



B. n. 562-586.] PHARSALIA. 7* 

To whatever height a free people could elevate a citizen, 
thither have I ascended, and nothing have I left above 
me hut the sovereignty. No private station does he desire, 
whoever in the Boman City attempts to be higher than 
Pompey. Here on our side either Consul is, here on our 
side are the ranks of our nobles to take their stand. Shall 
Csesar be the conqueror of the Senate ? Not to that degree, 
O Fortune ! dost thou drag onward all things in thy blind 
career and feel ashamed at nothing. 

" Does Gaul, rebellious now for many a year 1 , and an age 
spent in labours, impart courage ? Is it, because he 
fled from the cold waves 2 of the Ehine, and, calling the 
shallows 3 of a fluctuating sea the ocean, he showed his 
frightened back to the Britons he had sought out ? Or do 
. vain menaces swell, because the rumour of his frenzy has 
driven the City in arms from its paternal abodes ? Alas ! 
madman, they fly not from thee ; all are following me ! who, 
when I raised my standards gleaming over the whole ocean, 
before Cynthia had twice filled her completed orb, the pirate 
abandoned every ford of the sea, and asked for a home* 
in a narrow allotment of land. I too, more fortunate than 
Sulla 5 , pursued to the death, the monarch hitherto unsub- 
dued 6 and who stayed the destinies of Eome, flying in exile 
through the retreats of Scythian Pontus. 

" No portion of the world is unconnected with me, but 
the whole earth is occupied by my trophies, under whatever 
sun it lies. Hence do the Arctic regions own me as a victor 
at the cold waves of Phasis 7 ; a meridian clime is known to 

1 For many a year) ver. 568, 69. " Multis lustris," literally " for 
many ' lustra,' " or periods of four or five years. 

2 Fled from the cold -waves) ver. 570. He alludes to the return of Caesar 
from Germany into Gaul, and for the sake of a rhetorical artifice, pretends to 
call it a flight. 

3 Calling the shallows) ver. 571. See B. i. 1. 410. 

4 And asked for a home) ver. 579. Alluding to his conquest of the Cilician 
pirates and their subsequent settlements. 

* More fortunate than Sulla) ver. 512. This is said antithetically, and 
the words " although he was called fortunate (felix)," must be supposed to 
be supplied. Sulla had previously gained some victories over Mithridates. 

* The monarch hitherto unsubdued) ver. 581. In allusion to his victories 
over Mithridates. 

7 The cold traves of Phasis) ver. 585. Phasis, now the Faz or Rioni, 
was a famous river of Colchis. In ancient times it was crossed by 120 



80 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 686-596. 

me in hot Egypt 1 , and in Syeiie 2 , which on no side diverts 
its shades. The west obeys my laws, and the Hesperian 
Bsetis', that beyond all rivers dashes into the retreating 
Tethys. The subdued Arab 4 has known me ; me the He- 
niochi, fierce in war s , and the Colchians, famed for the fleece 
borne away. My standards do the Cappadocians dread, and 
Judaea, devoted to the rites of an unknown God , and the 
luxurious Sophene 7 . The Armenians, and the fierce Cili- 
cians, and the Taurians 8 have I subdued. What war but a 
civil one to my father-in-law have I left ? " 

His partizans followed the words of the chieftain with no 

bridges, and had many towns on its banks. When conquered by Pompey, 
Hithridates took refuge in the wild and inaccessible regions beyond the 
Phasis, whither Pompey found himself unable to pursue him. 

1 Known to me in hot Egypt) ver. 587. He had been sent by the Roman 
Senate to Egypt to be the guardian of Ptolemy, the youthful king of that ' 
country. 

* And in Syene) ver. 587. Syene was a city of Upper Egypt, on the 
eastern bank of the Nile, just below the first Cataract, and was considered 
the southern frontier city of Egypt against Ethiopia. It was an important 
point in the geography and astronomy of the ancients, as appears from the 
expression used in the present instance. It lay just under the tropic of 
Cancer, and was therefore chosen as the place through which they drew their 
chief parallel of latitude. The sun was vertical to Syene at the time of the 
summer solstice, and a well was shown there where the face of the sun was 
seen at noon at that time. 

* The Hesperian Badis) ver. 589. The Baetis, now the Guadalquivir, a 
river in the south of Spain, was also called Tartessus and Certis. It falls 
into the Atlantic to the north of Gades, now Cadiz. Pompey refers most 
probably to his campaigns against Sertorius, which, however, certainly did not 
redound to his credit as a general. 

* The subdued Arab) ver. 590. In his campaign in Syria and Palestine, 
where he replaced Hyrcanus in possession of the government in opposition to 
his brother Aristobulus. 

8 The Heniochi, fierce in war) ver. 591. The Heniochi were a people of 
Colchis famed for their piratical habits. 

8 Rites of an unknown God) ver. 593. " Incerti Dei," a God unknown 
to other nations. It was at this period that Pompey restored Ariobarzanes, 
king of Cappadocia, to his kingdom. 

f The luxurious Sophene) ver. 593. Sophene was a district of Greater 
Armenia, lying between the ranges of Antitaurus and Masius, near the banks 
of the Euphrates. According to one of the Scholiasts it is here called 
"mollis " from the heat of the sun in those regions, but more probably it is 
o termed by reason of the effeminacy of its inhabitants. 

* And the Tauriant) ver. 594. " Tauros." By this term he probably 
means the inhabitants of the country adjoining the great mountain range of 
Taurus in Central Asia. 



B. ii. 596-622.] PHARSALIA. 81 

applause, nor did they demand the speedy trumpet signal 
for the promised fight. Magnus too himself perceived 
their fears, and it pleased him that his standards should he 
borne back, and not to expose to the risks of a combat so 
decisive troops already vanquished by the fame of Csesar 
not yet seen by them. Just as among the herds a bull, 
worsted in the first combat, seeks the recesses of the 
woods, and, exiled amid the vacant fields, tries his horns 
upon the opposing trunks ; and returns not to the pastures, 
but when, his neck reinvigorated, his muscles exercised 
give him confidence ; then, soon victorious, the bulls accom- 
panying, he leads the recovered herds, maugre the shepherd, 
to any pastures he lists ; so, unequal in strength, Magnus 
surrendered Hesperia, and taking to flight over the Apu- 
lian fields ascended the secure towers of Brundisium 1 . 

This is a city once possessed by Dictsean colonists 2 , 
whom, flying from Crete, the Cecropian ships bore along 
the seas, with sails that falsely told a that Theseus was con- 
quered. In this region, the coast of Hesperia, which now 
contracts itself into a narrow arch, extends into the sea 
a small tongue, which, with its curving horns, shuts in the 
waves of the Adriatic. Nor yet would this water inclosed 
hi the narrowed inlet form a harbour, if an island did not 
receive upon its rocks the violent north-west gales, and 
turn back the dashing waves. On the one side and on the 
other nature has opposed mountains with craggy cliffs to 
the open main, and has warded off the blasts, so that, held 
fast by the shaking cables, ships can stand there. Hence 
far and wide extends all the ocean, whether the sails are 

1 Secure towers of Brundisium) ver. 609. Caesar says, in his " Civil War," 
B. i. c. 84, " Pompey, being informed of what had passed at Corfinium, 
marched from Luceria to Canusium, and thence to Brundisium." This was 
a town of Calabria, on a small bay of the Adriatic, forming an excellent 
harbour, to which the place owed its importance. 

* Dictcecm colonists) ver. 610. Or Cretan colonists, so called from 
Dicte, a mountain in the eastern part of Crete, where Jupiter is said to have 
been reared. 

9 With sails lliat falsely told) ver. 612. He alludes to the story of 
Theseus having returned from Crete, by inadvertence, with black sails, when 
they ought, according to the arrangement previously made, to have been 
white ; on which JEgeus, his father, threw himself into the sea. He 
means that Brundisium was colonized by the Cretans who had escaped 
from Crete with Theseus in the Cecropian or Athenian ships. 

G 



82 PHABSALIA. [B. IL 622-638. 

borne, Corcyra, to thy harbours', or whether on the left 
Illyrian Epidamnus s is sought, bordering upon the Ionian 
waves. Hither is the flight of mariners, when the Adriatic 
has put forth all its strength, and the Ceraunia ' have dis- 
appeared in clouds, and when the Calabrian Sason 4 is 
washed by the foaming main. 

Therefore, when there is no hope in the affairs that have 
been left behind, and there is no means of turning the 
warfare to the hardy Iberians, since the Alps, with their 
immense tracts, lie extended between, then that son 5 , one 
of a progeny so great, whose age M more advanced, he 
thus addresses : 

"I bid you try the distant regions of the world. 
Arouse the Euphrates and the Nile 6 , even as far as the fame 
of my name has reached, cities through which the fame of 
Home has been spread abroad after myself as her general. 
Bring back to the seas the Cilician colonists scattered amid 
the fields. On the one side arouse the Pharian kings 7 and 
my friend Tigranes. And neglect not, I advise thee, the 
arms of Pharnaces 8 , nor yet do thou the tribes that wander 

1 Corcyra, to thy harbours) ver. 623. Corcyra, now Corfu, was an island 
in the Ionian Sea, off the coast of Epirus, long famed for the naval enter- 
prise of its inhabitants. 

a Illyrian Epidamnus) ver. 624. Epidamnus was a town in Greek Illy- 
ria, on the Adriatic Sea. It was founded by the Corcyreans, and received 
from them the name of Epidamnus ; but when the Romans became masters 
of the country, they changed the name to Dyrrhacbium, as it reminded them 
of their word " damnum," signifying " loss," or " misfortune." It was the 
usual place of landing for those who crossed over from Brundisium. 

3 And the Ceraunia) ver. 626. The Ceraunia, or Acroceraunia, were 
immense rocks on the coast of Epirus. 

4 When the Calabrian Sason) ver. 627. Sason, or Saso, was a small 
rocky island off the coast of Illyria, to the north of the promontory of 
Acroceraunia, much frequented by pirates. It is now called Sasseno, or 
Sassa. 

s Then that son) ver. 631. His son Cneius Pompeius. 

8 Arouse the Euphrates and the Jfile) ver. 633. He is to repair to the 
Euphrates and the Nile to invoke the aid of the kings of Parthia and Egypt. 

7 Arouse the Pharian kings) ver. 636. Lucan frequently calls the Egyp- 
tians " Pharii," " Pharians," from the island of Pharos, situate at the mouth 
of the Nile. Tigranes was king of Armenia, and was indebted to Pompey 
for his kingdom. 

* The arms of Pharnaces) ver. 637. Pharnaces, king of Pontus or, more 
properly, of the Bosporus, was a son of Mitbridates the Great. He com- 



B. ii. 638-661.] PHAESALIA. 83 

in either Armenia, and the fierce nations along the shores 
of Pontus, and the Rhipoean bands ', and those whom on 
its frozen waves the sluggish swamp of Miotis 2 , enduring the 
Scythian waggon, bears. But why do I any further delay ? 
Throughout the entire East, my son, thou wilt carry 
the warfare, and awaken all the cities that have been 
subdued throughout the entire world ; let all my triumphs 
repair once again to my camp. You too, who mark the 
Latian annals with your names, let the first northern 
breeze bear you to Epirus ; thence, throughout the fields of 
the Greeks and the Macedonians acquire new strength, 
while winter affords time for peace." Thus he speaks, and 
all obey his commands, and unmoor their hollow ships from 
the shore. 

But, never enduring peace and a long cessation from 
arms, lest it may be in the power of the Fates to work 
any change, Caesar follows, and presses hard on the foot- 
steps of his son-in-law. To others would have sufficed so 
many fortified towns 3 captured at the first assault, so many 
towers overwhelmed, the enemy expelled; thou thyself, 
Rome, the Capital of the world, the greatest reward of the 
warfare, so easy to be taken. But Cffisar, precipitate in 
everything, thinking nothing done while anything re- 
mains to be done, fiercely pursues ; and still, although 
he is hi possession of the whole of Italy, because Magnus 
is located on its extreme shores, does he grieve that as yet 
it is common to them ; nor on the other hand is he willing 

pclled his father to put an end to his own life ; and, to secure himself on the 
throne, sent offers of submission with hostages to Pompey in Syria, and 
the body of his father to Sinope to be at the disposal of the Roman general. 
Pompey accepted his submission, and gave him the kingdom of the Bosporus, 
with the title of friend and ally of the Roman people. Pharnaces afterwards 
took advantage of the Civil Wars, and reconquered nearly the whole of his 
father's dominions, but was defeated by Csesar at the battle of Zela, and 
shortly afterwards perished. 

1 And the Rhipaan, bands) ver. 640. Rhipacan was a general and indefi- 
nite name for the northern nations of Scythia ; but the Rhipaean mountains 
are supposed to have been a western branch of the Uralian chain, 

a Swamp of Maotu) ver. 641. He alludes to the Palus Maeotis, or Sea 
of Azof, which, when frozen, was said to be crosied by the Nomad tribes 
of Scythia with their waggons. 

8 So many fortified towns) ver. 653. Of which number the Poet has 
already specified Ariminum, Auximnm, Asculum, Luceria,and Corfinium. 

o 2 



84 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 661-673. 

that the foe should wonder on the open main, but with 
moles he dams out the waves 1 , and the expansive ocean 
with rocks hm*led down. 

To no purpose is this labour bestowed on the immense 
undertaking ; the voracious sea sucks in all the rocks, and 
mingles the mountains with its sands ; just as, if the lofty 
Eryx- were thrown down into the midst of the waves of 
the ^Egean Sea, still no rocky heights would tower above 
the main ; or if Gaurus ', his pinnacles rooted up, were to 
fall down to the very depths of stagnant Avernus. There- 
fore, when in the shoals no mass retained its weight, then 
it pleased him, the woods cut down, to connect rafts, and 
to fasten together with wide extent the trunks of trees by 
immense chains. 

Fame relates that exulting Xerxes constructed 4 such a 

1 Dams out the waves) ver. 662. This passage is best explained by a por- 
tion of what Caesar himself has written on the subject. He states that he 
was afraid that if Pompey remained at Brundisium he might command 
the whole Adriatic Sea, with the extremity of Italy and the coast of Greece, 
and be able to conduct the war on either side of it, and, fearing that he would 
not relinquish Italy, he determined to deprive him of his means of communi- 
cation. For that purpose (Civil War, B. i. c. 25), " where the mouth of 
the port was narrowest, he threw up a mole of earth on either side, because 
in these places the sea was shallow. Having gone out so far that the mole 
could not be continued into deep water, he fixed double floats, thirty feet on 
either side, before the mole. . These he fastened with four anchors at the four 
corners, that they might not be carried away by the waves. Having com- 
pleted and secured them, he then joined to them other floats of equal size. 
These he covered over with earth and mould, that he might not be prevented 
from access to them to defend them, and on the front and both sides he pro- 
tected them with a parapet of wicker-work: and on every fourth one he 
raised a turret two stories high, to secure them the better from being attacked 
by shipping and set on fire." 

2 As, \f the lofty Eryx) ver. 666. Eryx was a lofty mountain of Sicily, 
on the summit of which there was a Temple sacred to Venus. 

* Or if Gaums) ver. 667. Gaurus was the name of a volcanic range of 
mountains in Campania. Avernus was a small lake seated near their foot, 
filling the crater of an extinct volcano. It was supposed to be connected 
with the Infernal Regions. The mephitic vapours were so powerful as to be 
said to kill the birds that attempted to-fly over it. 

4 Exulting Xerxes constructed) ver. 672. Xerxes, king of Persia, the 
eon of Darius and Atossa, when invading Europe, had a bridge of boats 
thrown across the Hellespont from the vicinity of Abydos on the Asiatic 
aide, to the coast between Sestos and Abydos on the European, where the 
straits are about a mile in width. The first bridge having been destroyed by 



B. ii. 673-689.] PHARSALIA. 85 

passage over the seas, when, daring great things, with his 
bridges he joined both Europe to Asia, and Sestos to Aby- 
dos 1 , and walked over the straits of the rapid Hellespont, 
not fearing Eurus and Zephyrus ; at the time when he would 
have borne his sails and ships through the midst of Athos 2 . 
In such manner are the inlets of the deep narrowed by the 
fall of the woods ; then with many a mound the work 
rises apace, and the tall towers vibrate over the seas. 

Pompey, seeing the inlets of the deep choked up with land 
newly-formed, vexed his mind with carking cares how to open 
the sea, and to spread the warfare over the main. Full oft, 
filled by the southern gales, and dragged by extended cables 3 
through the obstructions of the sea themselves, ships dashed 
down into the salt tide the summits of the mass, and 
made room for the barks 4 to enter; the balista, too, hurled 
by stalwart arms amid the shades of night, hurled torches 
cleft into many parts. When at length the occasion 
suited for a stolen flight, he first ordered his followers that 
no sailors' clamour should arouse, or clarion divide 3 the 

a storm, the despot caused the heads of the chief engineers to be cut off, and 
commanded the Straits to be scourged, and a set of fetters to be cast therein. 
A new bridge was then formed consisting of a double line of ships. (See 
Herodotus, B. viii. c. 36.) 

' And Sestos to Abydos) ver. 674. Sestos and Abydos have been famed 
in story for the loves of Hero and Leander. See their Epistles in the 
Heroides of Ovid. 

2 Through tfte midst of Alhos) ver. 677. Athos is a mountain which was 
also called Acte, projecting from Chalcidice in Macedonia. Lucan here 
alludes to the canal which Xerxes ordered to be cut through the Isthmus of 
Mount Athos, from the Strymonic to the Toronaic Gulf, that his ships 
might pass through; the remains of which work are to be seen at the 
present day. . 

3 Dragged by extended cables) ver. 683. They were not only impelled by 
sails, but were also dragged on by means of ropes from the shore, on account 
of their unwieldy size. 

4 Made room for the barks) ver. 685. Caesar, in the Civil War, B. L 
c. 26, gives the following account of these operations : " To counteract this, 
Pompey fitted out large merchant ships, which he found in the harbour of 
Brundisium ; on them he erected turrets three stories high, and, having fur- 
nished them with several engines and all sorts of weapons, drove them 
amongst Caesar's works, to break through the floats and interrupt the works; 
thus there occurred skirmishes every day with slings, arrows, and other 
weapons." 

' Or clarion divide) ver. 689. The "buccina" was properly a trumpet 
made from the conch-shell, and as such, in the hands of Triton, is described 



99 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 689-703. 

hoars, or trumpet lead the sailors, instructed beforehand, 
out to sea. 

Now had the Virgin, towards her close 1 , begun to precede 
the claws of the Scorpion that were to bring on Phoebus, when 
in silence the ships were unmoored. No .anchor arouses 
then* voices 2 while from the dense sands its hook is being 
dragged. While the sailyards are being set to tJic wind, and 
while the lofty pine-tree mast is being raised, the anxious 
masters of the fleet are silent; and the sailors, hanging 
by the ropes, unfurl the tightened sails, nor shake the 
stout shrouds, lest the air should breathe a whisper. 
The chieftain, too, in his aspirations, Fortune, entreats, 
thee, that Italy, which thou dost forbid him to re- 
tain, it may be at least allowed him to quit. Hardly 
do the Fates permit it; for with a loud noise, impelled 
by beaks of ships, the sea re-echoes, the waters dash, 
and the billows with the tracks of so many ships tliere 
intermingled 3 . 

by Ovid in the Metamorphoses, B. i. 1. 335, et seq. In after times it was 
made of metal to resemble the shell. It was probably distinct in form from 
the " cornu ;" but is often confounded with it As mentioned in the present 
instance, it was used chiefly to proclaim the watches of the night and day, 
which were hence called " buccina prima," " secunda," &c. The present 
orders were given that Caesar's troops might not be put on the alert. 

1 The Virgin, towards her dote) ver. 691. Weise has the following Note 
here : " The time after midnight is meant, before the dawn and the rising 
of the sun, which the Poet describes as then being in Sagittarius. For the 
'Chelae ' are [the claws] of the Scorpion. By ' Virgo ultima' he means that 
part of the constellation Virgo in the Zodiac which is nearest before the Scor- 
pion. At this hour Pompey sets sail from the harbour, being aided by the 
darkness. The meaning of the Poet seems to be that this took place in au- 
tumn, although others write to a contrary effect." 

3 jVb anchor arouses their voices) ver. 694. He alludes to the "celenima," 
or call, with which sailors keep time in heaving the anchor. 

* Ship* there intermingUd) ver. 703. Caesar gives the following interesting 
account of this escape of Pompey, in his Civil War, B. i. c. 27, 26 : " Pom- 
pey now began to prepare for his departure on the arrival of the ships ; and 
the more effectually to retard Caesar's attack, last his soldiers should force 
their way into the town at the moment of his departure, he stopped up the 
gates, built walls across the streets and avenues, sunk trenches across the 
ways, and fixed on them palisadoes and sharp stakes which he made level 
with the ground by means of hurdles and clay. But he barricaded with 
large beams, fastened in the ground and sharpened at the ends, two passages 
and roads without the walls, which led to the port. After making these 
arrangements, he ordered his soldiers to go on board without noise, and dis- 



B. IT. 704-717.] PHARSALIA. 87 

Therefore, the enemy being received by the gates, all of 
which throughout the city attachment changing with for- 
tune has opened, and within the walls, winding along the 
piers, with precipitate course seek the entrance to the har- 
bour, and are vexed that the fleet has reached the sea. O 
shame ! a slight victory is the flight of Pompey ! 

A narrow pass let the ships out to sea, more limited 
than the Euboean tide where it beats upon Chalcis 1 . Here 
stuck fast two ships, and received the grappling-irons pre- 
pared for the fleet ; and the warfare being thus dragged to - 
the shore 2 , here, for the first time, did Nereus grow red with 
the blood of citizens. The rest of the fleet departs, de- 
spoiled of the two last ships ; just as, when the bark from 
Pagasse * sought the waves of Phasis, the earth shot forth 
the Cyanean rocks 4 into the deep ; less by its stern torn off 

posed here and there, on the walls and turrets, some light-armed veterans, 
archers, and slingers. These he designed to call off by a certain signal, when 
all the soldiers were embarked, and left galleys for them in a secure place. 
The people of Brundisium, irritated by the insolence of Pompey's soldiers, 
and the insults received from Pompey himself, were in favour of Caesar's 
party. Therefore, as soon as they were aware of Pompey's departure, whilst 
his men were running up and down, and busied about their voyage, they 
made signs from the tops of the houses; Caesar, being apprised of the design 
by them, ordered scaling-ladders to be got ready and his men to take arms, 
that he might not lose any opportunity of coming to an action. Pompey 
weighed anchor at nightfall. The soldiers who had been posted on the wall 
to guard it, were called off by the signal which had been agreed on, and, 
knowing the road, ran down to the ships." 

1 Where it beats upon Chalcis) ver. 710. He compares the narrow pas- 
sage leading out of the harbour to the Enripus or Straits of Eubffia, now the 
straits of Negropont, which separated it from the main land. Chalcis was a 
city of Eubcea. 

a To the shore) ver. 712. Caesar, in his Civil War, B. i. c. 28, gives this 
account of their capture : " Caesar's soldiers fixed their ladders and scaled 
the walls; but, being cautioned by the people to beware of the hidden stakes 
and covered trenches, they halted, and being conducted by the inhabitants 
by a long circuit, they reached the port and captured with their boats and 
small craft two of Pompey's ships, full of soldiers, which had struck against 
Caesar's moles." The " manus," or " hands," mentioned by Lucan, were 
probably " harpagones," or " grappling irons." 

* The bark from Pagasce) ver. 715. He speaks of the expedition of Jason 
to Colchis, to recover the Golden Fleece, in the ship Argo, which was built 
at Pagasae in Thessaly. 

* The Cyanean rocks) ver. 716. The story was, that when Jason's ship 
passed between the Symplegades, or Cyanean Islands, which floated at the 



88 PHARSALIA. [B. n. 717-736. 

did the Argo escape from the mountains, and in vain 
did the Symplegas strike at the vacant sea, and, destined 
to stand, it bounded back 1 . 

Now, the complexion of the eastern sky no longer the same 
warns that Phoebus is pressing on, and the pale light is not 
yet ruddy, and is withdrawing their flames from the nearer 
stars ; and now the Pleiades - are dim, now the Wain of the 
declining Bootes :f , growing faint, returns to the appearance of 
the serene heavens, and the larger stars lie hid, and Lucifer 
himself flies from the warm day. Now, Magnus, thou hadst 
gained the open sea, not bearing with thee those destinies 
which thou wast wont, when over the waves throughout all 
seas thou didst give chase to the pirate. Exhausted by thy 
triumphs, Fortune has forsaken thee. Banished with wife 
and children, and dragging all thy household Gods to the 
warfare, still, a mighty exile thou dost go, nations ac- 
companying thee. 

A distant spot is sought for thy unworthy downfall 4 . Not 
because the Gods of heaven prefer to deprive thee of a 
sepulchre in thy native land are the Pharian sands con- 
demned to be thy tomb. It is Hesperia that is spared ; in 
order that, afar off, in a remote region, Fortune may hide 
the horrid deed, and the Roman land be preserved un- 
spotted by the blood of her own Magnus. 

-mouth of the Euxine Sea, the isles closed and struck off the stern of the 
Argo. 

1 Destined to stand, it bounded bacl) ver. 719. It was ordained by the 
Fates that if any ship should pass in safety between the Symplegades, they 
should ever after remain fixed to one spot. 

* And now ike Pleiades) ver. 722. The Pleiades were the daughters of 
Atlas and Pleione. They were changed into stars, of which six were visible 
and the seventh invisible, because, as the story was, when on earth she was 
united to a mortal ; whereas her sisters had intercourse only with Divinities. 
The Romans called them " Vergiliae." 

3 The Wain of the declining Bob'te*) ver. 722. The Constellation before 
the Great Bear was called Bootes, Arcturus, or Arctophylax. The name 
Bootes was derived from the position of the star before the wain, resembling 
that of the driver of a team. 

4 For thy unworthy downfall) ver. 731. The meaning is, that Egypt is 
appointed by the Fates as the scene of the death of Porapey. 



89 



BOOK THE THIKD. 

CONTENTS. 

While Pompey is crossing to Greece, the ghost of Julia appears to him in a 
dream, and predicts the devastating nature of the war, 1-35. Pompey 
arrives in Epirus, 36-45. Caesar instructs Curio to procure corn in Sicily, 
46-70. He then marches to Rome, 76-97- The alarm at Rome de- 
scribed. The hostility of the Senate to Caesar. Metellus the Tribune 
resists the spoilers of the public treasury, 98-133. Caesar threatens 
him, 134-140. Gotta advises Metellus to yield, 141-152. The Temple 
is opened, and the treasure is carried off, 153-168. In the meantime 
Pompey collects forces in Greece and Asia, which are enumerated, 169- 
297. Caesar, on his way to Spain, repairs to Massilia, which has remained 
faithful to Pompey, 298-303. The people of Massilia send deputies to 
him, deprecating civil war, 304-357. Cassar besieges Massilia, 358-374. 
The works are described, 374-398. Caesar commands a sacred grove to 
be cut down, and forces the soldiers, though reluctant, to do so, 399-452. 
Departing for Spain, he entrusts the siege to Trebonius, by whom 
it is continued, 453-496. The Massilians sally .forth by night and 
repulse the enemy, 497-508. The attack is now carried on by sea. 
Brutus arrives with his fleet, 509-537. The sea-fight is described, 538- 
751. The Massilians are vanquished, and Brutus is victorious, 752-762. 

WHEN the south wind pressing upon the yielding sails urged 
on the fleet, and the ships set in motion the middle of the 
deep, each sailor looked upon the Ionian waves ; Magnus 
alone did not turn his eyes from the Hesperian land, while 
he heheld his country's harbours, and the shores des- 
tined never to return to his gaze, and the peaks hidden in 
clouds, and the dim mountains, vanish. Then did the 
wearied limbs of the chieftain yield to sopor, ferous 
slumber. Then, a ghost, full of dread horror, Julia 1 seemed 
to raise her sorrowing head through the yawning earth, and 
to stand like a Fury 2 above the lighted pyre. 

"Exiled," said she 3 , "from the Elysian abodes and the 

1 Jidia) ver. 10. His former wife, the daughter of Caesar. 

9 To stand like a Fury) ver. 11. The term "furialis" is used because it 
was her errand, as she states to him, to follow him with vengeance through- 
out the Civil Warfare. 

* Exiled, saidslie) ver. 12. "Expulsa." This term does not mean that 
she is expelled from the abodes of the Blessed by force, but that she is 
aroused by the portentousness of the Civil War, and is unable, from the inte- 
rest she feels in it, to remain there any longer. 



90 PHAR8ALIA. [B. m. 12-35. 

fields of the Blessed, unto the Stygian shades and the guilty 
ghosts, since the civil warfare have I been dragged. I my- 
self have beheld the Eumenides holding torches, the which 
to brandish against your arms. The ferryman of scorched 
Acheron 1 is preparing boats innumerable, and Tartarus is 
expanding for manifold punishments. Hardly with plying 
right hand do all the Sisters suffice for the work ; those 
who are breaking their threads quite weary the Destinies. 
While I was thy Avife, Magnus, thou didst head the joyous 
triumphal processions; with thy marriage Fortune has 
changed ; and ever condemned by fate to drag her 
mighty husbands to ruin, lo ! my funereal pile stitt warm, 
the supplanter Cornelia 2 has manned tlitc. 

" Let her, in war and upon the deep, adhere to thy 
standards, so long as it is allowed me to break thy slumbers 
not secure from care, and let no time be left at leisure for 
your love, but both let Ctesar occupy thy days and Julia thy 
nights 3 . Me, husband, not the obliviousness of the Lethsean 
shore has made forgetful of thyself, and the princes of 
the dead have allowed me to follow thee. Thou waging 
the warfare, I will come into the midst of the ranks. 
Never, Magnus, by the Shades and by my ghost shall 
it be allowed thee not to have been his son-in-law. In 
vain dost thou sever thy ties with the sword, the civic 
warfare shall make thee mine." Thus having said, the 
ghost, gliding away through the embrace of her trem- 
bling husband, fled. 

1 The ferryman of scorched Acheron) ver. 17. Charon, the ferryman of hell. 

* The supplanter Cornelia) ver 23. Cornelia was the daughter of P. Cor- 
nelius Scipio, sometimes called Q. Caecilius Metellus Scipio on account of his 
adoption by Q. Metellus. She was first married to Crawus, the son of the 
Triumvir, who perished with his father in the Parthian expedition. In the 
next year she was married to Pompej-, shortly after the death of his wife 
Julia. After the death of Pompey she was pardoned by Caesar, and return- 
ing to Rome, received from him the ashes of her husband, which she pre- 
served on his Alban estate. The usual period of mourning among the Ro- 
mans for a husband or wife was ten months (see the Fasti of Ovid, B. i. 
1. 86), within which space of time it was doomed infamous to marry ; Corne- 
lia, having been married to Pompey very shortly after Julia's death, is conse- 
quently here called by the opprobioug name of " pellex," " supplanter," or 
" paramour." 

3 A nd Julia thy nights) ver. 27. By haunting his thoughts and his 
dreams. 



B. m. 36-61.] PHARSALIA. 91 

He, although the Deities and the Shades threaten de- 
struction, rushes the more boldly to arms, with a mind 
assured of ill. And, " Why," says he, " are we alarmed 
at the phantom of an unsubstantial dream ? Either there 
is no sense left in the mind after death, or else death itself 
is nothing." Now the setting Titan was sinking in the 
waves, and had plunged into the deep as much of his fiery 
orb as is wont to be wanting to the moon, whether she is 
about to be at full, or whether she has just been full ; 
then did the hospitable land present an easy access to 
the ships ; they coiled up the ropes, and, the masts laid 
down, with oars they made for the shore. 

Csesar, when the winds bore off the ships thus escaping, 
and the seas had hidden the fleet, and he stood the sole 
ruler on the Hesperian shore, no glory hi the expulsion of 
Magnus caused joy to him ; but he complained that the 
enemy had turned their backs in safety upon the deep. 
Nor, indeed, did any fortune now suffice for the eager 
hero ; nor was conquest of such value that he should delay 
the warfare. Then did he expel from his breast the care 
for arms and become intent upon peace, and in what 
manner he might conciliate the fickle attachment of the 
populace, fully aware that both the causes of anger and the 
highest grounds of favour originate in supplies of corn. For 
it is famine alone that makes cities free, and respect is 
purchased when the powerful are feeding a sluggish multi- 
tude. A starving commonalty knows not how to fear 1 . 

Curio is ordered to pass over- into the Sicilian cities, where 
the sea has either overwhelmed the land with sudden waves or 
has cut it asunder and made the mid-land 3 a shore for itself. 

! Knows not how to fear) ver. 58. Being always ready for insurrection. 

4 Ordered to pats over) ver. 59. The movements of Caesar at this con- 
juncture are thus related by himself in the Civil War, B. i. c. 80:" There- 
fore, for the present, he relinquished all intention of pursuing Pompey, and 
resolved to march to Spain, and commanded the magistrates of the free 
towns to procure him ships, and to have them conveyed to Brundisiiim. He 
detached Valerius, his lieutenant, with one legion to Sardinia ; Curio, the 
Propraetor, to Sicily with three legions; and ordered him, when he had 
recovered Sicily, immediately to transport his army to Africa." The object of 
Caesar was, as Lucan states, to procure supplies of corn from Sardinia and 
Sicily, two of the great granaries of Rome. 

3 Made Hie mid-land) ver. 61. Has made that which was the middle of a 



92 PHARSALIA. [u. ra. 62-84. 

There, is a vast conflict of the main, and the waves are 
ever struggling, that the mountains, burst asunder, may 
not reunite their utmost verges. The war, too l , is extended 
even to the Sardinian coasts. Each island is famous for its 
corn-bearing fields ; nor more do any lands fill Hesperia with 
harvests brought from afar, nor to a greater extent supply 
the Koman granaries. Hardly in fertility of soil does it 
excel them, when, the south winds pausing 2 , Boreas sweep- 
ing the clouds downwards to a southern clime, Libya 
bears a plenteous year from the falling showers. 

When these things had been provided for by the chief- 
tain, then, victorious, he repaired to the abodes of his 
country, not bringing with him bands of armed men, 
but having the aspect of peace. Oh! if he had re- 
turned to the City, the nations of the Gauls and the 
North only subdued, what a long line of exploits might 
he have paraded before him in the lengthened procession 
of triumph ', what representations of the warfare ! How 
might he have placed chains upon the Rhine and upon 
the ocean! How high-spirited Gaul would have followed 
his lofty chariot, and mingled with the yellow-haired 
Britons! Alas! by conquering still more what a triumph 
was it 4 that he lost! Not with joyous crowds did the 
cities see him as he went along, but silent they beheld 
him with alarm. Nowhere was there the multitude coming 
forth to meet the chieftain. Still, he rejoiced that he was 
held in such dread by the people, and he would prefer 
himself not to be loved. 

And now, too, he has passed over the steep heights of 

continent into sea-shore. He has mentioned in the Second Book the 
belief that Sicily once joined the continent of Italy. 

1 The war, too) ver. 64. Weise thinks that " bella" does not here literally 
mean war, but " ships of war," sent for the purpose of collecting corn in the 
isle of Sardinia. See the Note to 1. 59. 

2 The south winds pausing) ver. 68. The " Austri," or south winds of 
Africa, brought dry weather and kept away the fertilizing showers. 

* In the lengthened procession of triumph) ver. 75. Lucan, in his zeal, 
overlooks the fact that a refusal to allow Caesar to do this, or, in other 
words, to have a triumph for his Gallic wars, was one of the main causes 
which led him to engage in the Civil War. 

* What a triumph was it) ver. 79. No triumphs were permitted for con- 
quests in civil warfare. 



B. ra. 84-103.] PHAESALIA. 93 

Anxur 1 , and where the watery way divides the Pontine 
marshes. Where, too, is the lofty grove, where the realms of 
Scythian Diana 2 ; and where there is the road for the Latian 
fasces :1 to lofty Alba. Afar from a lofty rock he now 
views the City, not beheld by him during the whole period 
of his northern wars ; and, thus speaking, he admires the 
walls of his Rome : 

" And have there been men, forced by no warfare, to de- 
sert thee, the abode of the Gods ! For what city will they 
fight? The Gods have proved more favouring in that it is 
no Eastern fury that now presses upon the Latian shores, 
nor yet the swift Sarmatian in common with the Pannonian, 
and the Getans mingled with the Dacians. Fortune, Borne, 
has spared thee, having a chief so cowardly 4 , in that the 
warfare was a civil one." 

Thus he speaks, and he enters Rome stupefied with 
terror ; for he is supposed to be about to overthrow the 
walls of Rome as though captured, with dusky fires, and to 
scatter abroad the Gods. This is the extent of their fear ; 
they think that he is ready to do whatever he is able. No 
festive omens are there, no pretending feigned applause with 
joyous uproar; hardly is there time to hate. The throng 



1 Steep heights of Anxur) ver. 84. Anxur, which was the former name 
of Terracina, was an ancient town of Latiuni, situate 58 miles to the south- 
east of Rome, on the Appian Way, and upon the coast ; it had a citadel on a 
high hill, on which stood the Temple of Jupiter Anxurus. 

2 Realms of Scythian Diana) ver. 86. He alludes to the town of Aricia 
at the foot of the Alban Mount, on the Appian Way, about 16 miles from 
Home. In its vicinity was a celebrated grove and temple of Diana Aricina, 
on the borders of the Lacus Neraorensis. Diana was worshipped here in a 
barbarous manner. Her priest, who was called " Rex nemorensis," was always 
a runaway slave, who obtained his office by slaying his predecessor, and 
he was obliged to fight with any slave who succeeded in breaking off a 
branch of a certain tree in the sacred grove. The worship of Diana was 
said to have been introduced here from the Tauric Chersonesus by Orestes 
and his sister Iphigenia, when flying from the cruelty of king Thoas. See 
the story related in the Pontic Epistles of Ovid, B. iii. Ep. 2. 

3 Road for the Latian fasces) ver. 87. He alludes to the " Latinae 
Periae," which were celebrated by the Roman Consuls on the Alban Mount. 
See the First Book, 1. 550, and the Note to the passage. 

4 Having a chief so cowardly) ver. 96. A chief so timid as Pompey hag 
proved himself by his flight. 



94 PHAESALIA. [B. m. 108-114. 

of Senators fills the Palatine halls of Phoebus ' drawn forth 
from their concealment, by no right of convoking the Senate. 
The sacred seats are not graced with the Consul, no Prae- 
tor is there, the next power according to law; and the 
empty curule seats 2 have been removed from their places. 
Caesar is everything. The Senate is present, witness to 
the words of a private person. The Fathers sit, prepared to 
give their sanction, whether he shall demand a kingdom, 
whether a Temple for himself, the throats, too, of the 
Senate, and their exile. 

Fortunate was it that he blushed at commanding, more 
than Rome did at obeying. Still, liberty, making the ex- 
periment in one man whether the laws can possibly with- 
stand force, gives rise to anger ; and the resisting Metellus :< , 

1 Palatine halls of Phoebus) ver. 103. On arriving at Rome Caesar con- 
voked the Senate not in the Senate-house, but in the Temple of Apollo, on 
the Palatine hill. 

2 The empty cut-vie seats) ver. 107. The curule seats were graced 
by neither the Consuls nor the Praetors, as they were in arms with Pom- 
pey. In the account of the Civil War, B. i. c. 32, Caesar relates what he 
said on this occasion. He excused the war which he had undertaken as 
he was compelled in his own defence to protect himself against the malice 
and envy of a few, and at the same time requested that they would send 
messengers to Pompey and the Consuls to propose a treaty for adjusting 
the present differences. This proposition of Caesar is suppressed by Lucan, 
who throughout endeavours to place Caesar's conduct in the most invidious 
light. Caesar tells us, c. 33, " The Senate approved of sending deputies, but 
none could be found fit to execute the commission ; for every person by reason 
of his own private fears declined the office. For Pompey, on leaving the 
city, had declared in the open Senate, that he would hold in the same degree 
of estimation those who stayed in Rome and those in Caesar's camp. Thus 
three days were wasted in disputes and excuses. Besides, Lucius Metellus, 
one of the Tribunes, was suborned by Caesar's enemies, to prevent this, and 
to embarrass everything else which Caesar should propose." 

1 The resisting Metellus) rer. 114. This was L. Caecilins Metellus Cre- 
ticus, the Tribune of the people, and one of the adherents of Pompey. Re- 
maining behind in the City on the approach of Caesar, he did not fly with 
Pompey and the rest of his party. The public treasury of 'Rome was in the 
Temple of Saturn, in which Appian states that there was a large sum of 
money especially deposited as a fund to defray the expenses of any war that 
night arise from the Gauls invading the Roman territory. Caesar laid hands 
on this, alleging that as he bad conquered the Gauls there was no longer any 
use for it. Metellus attempted to prevent him, but he drew his sword in an 
attitude of menace, saying, " Young man, it is as easy to do this as to say 
it.'' It is supposed that this was the same Metellus who fought on the side 



8. ni. 115-140.J PHAESALIA. -8S 

when he beholds the Temple of Saturn being forced open 
by vast efforts, hurries his steps, and bursting through the 
troops of Csesar, takes his stand before the doors of the 
Temple not yet opened. (To such a degree does the love 
of gold alone know not how to fear the sword and death. 
Swept away, the laws perish with no contest; but thou, 
pelf, the most worthless portion of things, dost excite the 
contest;) and, forbidding the conqueror the plunder, the 
Tribune with loud voice addresses him : 

" Only through my sides shall the Temple struck by thee 
be opened, and, plunderer, thou shalt carry off no scattered 
wealth except by shedding sacred blood. Surely this violated 
power will find the Gods its avengers. The Tribune's curse, 
too \ following Crassus to the warfare, prayed for the direful 
battles. Now unsheathe the sword ; for the multitude is 
not to be regarded by thee, the spectator of thy crimes : in 
a deserted City do we stand. No soldier accursed shall 
bear off his reward from our Treasury ; nations there are for 
thee to overthrow, walls for thee to grant. Want does not 
drive thee to the spoils of exhausted peace; Caesar, thou 
hast a war of thy own." 2 

The victor, aroused by these words to extreme anger, 
exclaims, " Thou dost conceive vain hopes of a glorious 
death : my hand, Metellus, shall not pollute itself with that 
throat of thine. No honor shall make thee deserving of the 
resentment of Csesar. Has liberty been left safe, thee its 
assertor? Not to that degree has length of tune con- 
founded the highest with the lowest, that the laws, if 
they are to be preserved by the voice of Metellus, would 
not prefer by Cffisar to be uprooted." 

of Antony against Augustus, and on being taken prisoner was pardoned at 
the intercession of his son, who had sided with Augustus. 

1 The Tribune's curse, too) ver. 127. C. Ateius Capito and Aquillius Gallus, 
the Tribunes of the people, were the opponents of Pompey and Crassus when 
Consuls. They endeavoured to stop the levy of troops and to render the cam- 
paigns which they wished to undertake impossible ; Crassus, however, conti- 
nuing to make preparation for an expedition against the Parthians, Capito 
uttered curses against him, and announced the appearance of dreadful prodi- 
gies, which were disregarded by Crassus. The overthrow and death of 
Crassus were by many looked upon as the result of his disregard of the 
warnings of Capito. 

* A war of tky ovm) ver. 133. You have the war in Gaul, in which you 
may gain sufficient spoil. 



96 PHARSALIA. [B. ra. 141-160. 

He spoke, and, the Tribune not yet retreating from the 
door, his anger became more intense; he looked around 
upon the ruthless swords, forgetful to pretend that there was 
peace l . Then did Cotta- persuade Metellus to desist from 
his too audacious purpose. " The liberty of a people," said 
he, " which a tyrant's sway is ruling, perishes through 
excess of liberty ; of it thou mayst preserve the shadow, if 
thou art ready to do whatever thou art commanded. To 
so many unjust things have we, conquered, submitted ; this 
is the sole excuse for our shame and our degenerate fears, 
that nothing can possibly now be dared. Quickly let him 
carry off the evil incentives to direful warfare. Injuries 
move the people, if any there are, whom then* laws pro- 
tect. Not to ourselves, but to our tyrant, is the poverty 
dangerous that acts the slave." 

Forthwith, Metellus led away, the Temple was opened 
wide. Then did the Tarpeian rock re-echo, and with a loud 
peal attest that the doors were opened ; then, stowed away 
in the lower part of the Temple, was dragged up, un- 
touched for many a year, the wealth of the Roman people, 
which the Punic wars ', which Perseus 4 , which the booty of 
the conquered Philip 5 , had supplied; that which, Rome, 
Pyrrhus left to thee in his hurrying flight, the gold for 



1 That tfiere was peace) ver. 143. "Togam;" literally, the "toga" or 
gown, worn by citizens in the time of peace, and consequently employed aa 
the emblem of peace. 

2 Then did Cotta) ver. 143. This was L. Aurelius Cotta, a relative of 
Aurelia, the mother of Caesar, to whose party he belonged in the Civil War. 
He had been Consul, Praetor, and Censor, and was an intimate friend of Cicero, 
by whom he is much praised as a man of great talent and extreme prudence. 
Lucan is probably in error in representing him as unwillingly submitting to 
Caesar. 

3 Which the Punic tears) ver. 157. At the end of the first Punic war the 
Carthaginians were obliged to pay 1200 talents, and of the second 10,000. 

4 Which Perseus) ver. 158. Perses, or Perseus, the last king of Mace- 
don, was conquered by Paulus .iEmilius, B.C. 188. The booty was of im- 
mense value, and was paid into the Roman treasury, much to the chagrin of 
the soldiers, who were so indignant at their small share of the plunder, that 
it was not without much opposition that .V.imlius obtained his triumph. 

* Of the conquered Philip) ver. 158. Philip the Fifth, king of Macedon, 
was conquered by Quintus Flamininus, who acquired a large amount of 
booty, and celebrated a magnificent triumph which lasted three days. Philip 
was the father of Perseus. 



B. m. 160-175.] PHARSALIA. 97 

which Fabricius did not sell himself 1 to the king, whatever 
you saved, manners of our thrifty forefathers ; that which, as 
tribute, the wealthy nations of Asia 2 had sent, and Mino'ian 
Crete 3 had paid to the conqueror Metellus ; that, too, which 
Cato brought from Cyprus 4 over distant seas. Besides, the 
wealth of the East, and the remote treasures of captive kings, 
which were borne before him in the triumphal processions 
of Pompey 5 , were carried forth; the Temple was spoiled 
with direful rapine ; and then for the first time was Home 
poorer than Csesar 6 . 

In the meantime the fortune of Magnus throughout 
the whole earth has aroused to battle the cities destined to 
fall with him. Greece near at hand affords forces for the 
neighbouring war. Amphissa sends 7 Phocian bands, the 
rocky Cirrha 8 too, and Parnassus deserted on either 
mountain ridge. The Boeotian leaders assemble, whom 
the swift Cephisus 9 surrounds with its fate-foretelling 

1 Fabricius did not sell himself) ver. 160. He alludes to the vain attempt 
made by Pyrrhus, king of Epirus, when he invaded Italy, to bribe C. Fabri- 
cius Luscinus. The money, according to Lucan, being left behind, was put 
in the public treasury. 

8 The wealthy nations of Asia) ver. 162. He probably alludes to treasures 
acquired from Antiochus, king of Syria, and Attalus, king of Pergamus, 
the latter of whom made the Roman people his heirs. 

3 And Minolan Crete) ver. 163. Crete, formerly the kingdom of Minos, 
was subdued by Q. Metellus Creticus. 

* Cato brought from Cyprus) ver. 164. The island of Cyprus was made 
a Roman province in the year B.C. 58, and M. Porcius Cato was sent to 
reduce it to submission. The money which he had collected there was put 
in the public treasury, and afterwards fell into Caesar's hands. It was said 
to have amounted to 7000 talents. 

* Triumphal processions of Pompey) ver. 166. Those which he had 
gained from Mithridates, king of Pontus, Tigranes, king of Armenia, and 
Aristobulus, king of Judaea. 

* Poorer than Caesar) ver. 168. Caesar, in consequence of the large sums 
which he had expended in promoting his interests, was now greatly in debt. 

7 Amphissa sends) ver. 172. Amphissa, now Salona, was one of the 
chief towns of the Ozolian Locrians, on the borders of Phocis, seven miles from 
Delphi. 

* The rocky Cirrha) ver. 172. Cirrha was a town of Phocis, a country of 
Greece between .aJtolia and Boeotia, in which was the mountain of Par- 
nassus, the fountain of Hippocrene and Helicon, and the city of Delphi. 

* The swift Cephims) ver. 175. The Cephisus here alluded to was the 
chief river of Boeotia and Phocis, rising near Lilxa in the latter country, 

H 



98 PHARSALIA. [B. m. 175-182. 

waters. Cadmean Dirce, too 1 , and the bands of Fisae 2 , 
and the Alpheus 3 that sends beneath the main its waters to 
the peoples of Sicily. Then does the Arcadian leave 
Msenalus 4 , and the Trachynian soldier Herculean (Eta*. 
The Thesprotians 6 and the Dryopians 7 rush on, and the 
ancient Sellse 8 forsake the silent oaks on the Chaonian 
heights. Although the levy has exhausted 9 the whole of 
Athens, three little barks keep possession of the Phoebean 

and falling into the lake Copais. Its waters are called " fatidica " from its 
rising in Phocis, in which was situate Delphi, the oracle of Apollo. 

1 CAdmean Dirce, too) ver. 175. Dirce was a fountain near Thebes, which 
city was founded by Cadmus, the son of Agenor, king of Phoenicia. 

a The bandt of Pitce) ver. 176. Pisa was a city of Elis, near which the 
Olympic games were celebrated. 

3 And the AlpJteus) ver. 177. The Alpheus was a river of Arcadia, famed 
in story for his love for Arethusa, a water nymph of Sicily, and fabled to 
have passed under the earth from Greece to Sicily. See the story related in 
the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. v. 1. 487 and 576, et seq. 

* Leave Mcenalus) ver. 177. Maenalus was the name of a mountain 
and a wood in Arcadia, in the Peloponnesus, sacred to Pan. 

4 Herculean (Eta) ver. 178. (Eta was the name given to a pile of moun- 
tains in the south of Thessaly. It was on one of these, that, according to 
ancient mythology, Hercules put himself to death, by burning on his funeral 

S'le. See the Metamorphoses of Ovid, Book z. Tracbyn was also called 
eraclea, and was celebrated as having been for a time the residence of 
Hercules. It was a town of Thessaly, situate in the district Malis. There 
was another of the same name in Phocis. 

* TJie Thesprotians) ver. 179. The Thesproti were a people on the coast 
of Epirus. They were said to have been the most ancient race, and to have 
derived their name from Thesprotus, the son of Lycaon. 

7 And the Dryopiant) ver. 179. The Dryopes dwelt first in Thessaly, 
and afterwards in Doris. Being driven thence by the Dorians, they migrated 
to other countries, and settled in Peloponnesus, Euboea, and Asia Minor. 

* And tlte ancient Sella) ver. 180. The Sellae were probably a people of 
Chaonia, in the neighbourhood of Dodona, The priests of the Temple ef 
Jupiter there were called Selli or Helli. The will of the Divinity was said 
to be declared by the wind rustling through the oaks ; and in order to render 
the sounds more distinct, brazen vessels were suspended on the branches of 
the trees, which, being set in motion by the wind, came in contact with ona 
another. The oracle, as mentioned by Lucan, had now been long extinct, 
for in the year B.C. 219 the Temple was destroyed by the JEtolians, and the 
acred oaks cut down. 

9 The levy hat exhausted) ver. 181. This passage has greatly puzzled 
the commentators, but the sense is pretty evidently that suggested by Cor- 
tius : "Although it was but a levy, still it exhausted the resources of 
Athens, which was now weak, and but thinly inhabited." 



B. in. 182-190.] PHAESALIA. 99 

dockyards 1 , and demand Salamis to be believed as true 2 . 
Now, beloved by Jove :i , ancient Crete with its hundred 
peoples resorts to arms, both Gnossus skilled 4 at wielding 
the quiver, and Gortyna not inferior to the arrows of the 
East '. 

Then, too, he who possesses Dardanian Oricum 6 , and 
the wandering Athamanians 7 dispersed amid the towering 
woods, and the Enchelians 8 with then* ancient name, who 
witnessed the end of the transformed Cadmus, the Colchian 

1 Phcebean dockyards) ver. 182. The dockyards of Athens are probably 
called " Phcebea " from the circumstance of Minerva, the tutelar Divinity of 
Athens, having dedicated the Piraeus to Apollo, as she did the Areopagus or 
Hill of Justice to Mars. 

2 Salamis to be believed as true) ver. 183. The levy has so weakened 
Athens, that there are only three ships of war left in the harbour, to ask 
you to believe that this is the maritime state which once vanquished the Per- 
sians at the battle of Salamis. These three ships of war may probably have 
been those which were used for sacred or state purposes, namely, the Theoris, 
which performed a yearly voyage to Delos ; the Paralos, which, according to 
the Scholiast on Aristophanes, was sent to Delphi or other places on sacred 
missions ; and the Salaminia, which, according to Plutarch, was used for the 
conveyance of those summoned from abroad for trial. 

3 Note, beloved by Jove) ver. 184. Crete was said to have been the birth- 
place of Jupiter, and, according to some accounts, he was buried there. 
Minos, its first king and lawgiver, was the son of Jupiter by Europa. 

4 Both Gnossus skilled) ver. 185. Gnossus and Gortyna were two of the 
famed hundred cities of Crete. Its inhabitants were noted for their skill in 
archery. 

5 To the arrows of Hie East) ver. 186. By the word " Eoi's" he refers to 
the Parthians, who were remarkable for their expertness in the use of the 
bow, even on horseback. 

* Dardanian Oricum) ver. 187. Oricum or Oricus was a Greek town on 
the coast of Illyria, near the Ceraunian Mountains and the frontiers of Epirus. 
According to the tradition here followed in the use of the word " Darda- 
nium," it was founded by Helenus, the son of Priam, who had then become 
the husband of Andromache. Another account was that it was founded by 
the Eubceans, who were cast here by a storm on their return from Troy ; while 
a third legend stated that it was a Colchian colony. 

7 The -wandering Atfiamanians) ver. 188. By the use of the word 
" Athamas," he means the " Athamanes," a race living on the mountains of 
Epirus. 

8 And the Enchelians) ver. 189. The Enchelise were a people of Illyria, 
into whose country Cadmus and his wife Harmonia retiring, were changed 
into snakes or dragons. Lucan says that they received their name from this 
circumstance: ly^tAuj being the Greek name for a kind of serpent. See 
Ovid's Metamorphoses, B. iv. 1. 563, et seq. 

H 2 



100 PHARSALIA. [B. ra. 190-204. 

Absyrtis, too 1 , that foams down to the Adriatic tide, and 
those who cultivate the fields of Peneus 2 , and by whose 
labours the Thessalian ploughshare cleaves Hsemonian 
lolcos. From that spot for the first time was the sea at- 
tempted when the untaught Argo :l mingled unknown races 
upon a polluted sea-shore 4 , and first committed the mortal 
race to the winds and the raging waves of the ocean, 
and through that bark one more death was added to the 
destinies of man. Then Thracian Hsemus is deserted, and 
Pholoe' that feigned 6 the two-formed race. Strymon is 
abandoned 6 , accustomed to send the Bistonian birds to the 
warm Nile, and the barbarian Cone 7 , where one mouth of 
the Ister, divided into many parts, loses the Sarmatian 
waves, and washes Peuce sprinkled by the main ; Mysia, 
too 8 , and the Idalian land bedewed by the cold Caicus , and 

1 The Cotchian Absyrtis, too) ver. 190. He alludes to the two islands off 
the coast of Illyri.i called Absyrtides, where the Colchian Medea was said 
to have slain her brother Absyrtus. It was, however, more generally believed 
that this took place at Tomi, whither Ovid was banished, on the shores of 
the Pontus Euzinus. The Absyrtis was probably a river at the mouth of 
which these islands were situate. 

2 The fields of Peneus) ver. 191. The Peneus was a river of Thessaly, 
of which lolcos was a seaport, from which the Argonauts set sail for Colchis 
in the ship Argo. 

3 The untaught Argo) ver. 193. The Argo was said to have been the 
first ship launched on the sea by mankind. 

4 A polluted sea-shore) ver. 194. The shore might be considered polluted 
or guilty, by reason of Medea's undutiful conduct to her father and her other 
iniquities. In navigating the Argo, mankind for the first time incurred the 
peril of shipwreck. 

And Pholoe that feigned) ver. 198. This was a mountain forming the 
boundary between Arcadia and Elis. It was famed as having been one 
of the abodes of the Centaurs. 

Strymon is abandoned) ver. 199. The Strymon was a river of Thrace, 
whose banks were frequented by large flocks of cranes, which were said to 
migrate to Egypt in the winter season. 

' And the barbarian Cone) ver. 200. Cone was an island at the mouth 
of the Ister or Danube. Peuce was also an island of Moesia, formed by 
the two southern mouths of the Danube. It was inhabited by the Peucini, 
a tribe of the Bastarnae. Lucan speaks here of its being washed by only 
one mouth of the Danube. 

8 Mysia, too) ver. 203. Mysia was an extensive district of Asia Minor, 
in which Troy was situate. 

By the cold Catcus) ver. 203. The Caicus was a river of Mysia 
that flowed past Troy and the foot of Mount Ida. 



B. m. 204-215.] PHARSALIA. 101 

Arisbe 1 very ban-en in its soil. Those, too, who inhabit 
Pitane 2 , and Celsense^, which, Pallas, condemned when 
Phoebus was victor, laments thy gifts, ^here, too, the swift 
Marsyas "* descending with his straight banks approaches the 
wandering Mseander, and, mingling, is borne back again ; 
the land, too, that permits the Pactolus 5 to flow forth from 
its gold-bearing mines, not less invaluable than which the 
Hermus divides the fields. The bands of Ilium, too, with 
omens their own 7 , seek the standards and the camp doomed 
to fall ; nor does the story of Troy restrain them, and Csesar 
declaring himself 8 the descendant of Phrygian lulus. 

The nations of Syria came ; the deserted Orontes 9 , and 
Kinos so wealthy 10 (as the story is), and windy Damascus 11 , 

1 And Arisbe) ver. 204. Arisbe was a small town situate in the Troad. 

2 Who inhabit Pitane) ver. 205. Pitane was a seaport town of Mysia, 
on the shores of the Elaitic gulf, at the mouth of the Evenus, or, according 
to some, of the Cai'cus. It was the birth-place of the Academic philosopher 
Arcesilaiis. 

3 And Celanai) ver. 206. Celsenae was a great city of southern Phry- 
gia, which lay at the sources of the rivers Mseander and Marsyas. Near the 
source of the latter river there was a grotto which was said to have been 
the scene of the punishment of Marsyas by Apollo. After he had been 
flayed alive, his skin was hung up in the town of Celaenae. The story of the 
musical contest between Apollo and Marsyas is told in Ovid's Metamorphoses, 
B. vi. 1. 383. 

4 The swift Marsyas) ver. 207. This river was said to have been formed 
by the tears which were shed by the rural Deities in sympathy for the 
tragical death of Marsyas. 

5 Permits the Pactolus) ver. 209. The Pactolus was a river of Lydia in 
Asia Minor, said to have golden sands. The word "passa," "allowing" or 
" permitting/' is used, inasmuch as flowing forth from the mines it would tend 
to waste the precious metal. 

6 Tfa Hermus divides) ver. 210. The Hermus was another river of 
Lydia, which was also said to have golden sands. 

7 With omens their own) ver. 212. " Ominibus suis ;" meaning " with their 
usual ill-luck," that of being conquered, whenever they had recourse to arms. 

8 Caesar declaring himself) ver. 213. Julius Caesar boasted of being 
descended from lulus or Ascanius, the son of JEneas, through the kings of 
Alba Longa. 

9 The deserted Orontes) ver. 214. He means the country about the river 
Orontes, which flowed past Antioch in Syria. 

10 And Ninos so wealthy) ver. 215. Ninus or Nineveh, according to 
Scripture, was founded by Nimrod. According to profane historians, it was 
founded by Ninus, the husband of Semiramis. 

11 The windy Damascus) ver. 215. Damascus in Coele-Syria is probably 



102 PHAESALIA. [B. ra. 216-225. 

and Gaza 1 , and Idumsea 2 rich in its groves of palms. Un- 
stable Tyre as well 3 , and Sidon precious with its purple dye. 
These ships did thje Cynosure conduct 4 to the warfare by 
no winding track along the sea, more certain for no other 
barks. The Phoenicians first, if belief is given to report, 
ventured to represent in rude characters the voice destined 
to endure. Not yet had Memphis learned to unite 5 
the rushes of the stream; and only animals engraved 
upon stones, both birds and wild beasts, kept in ex- 
istence the magic tongues". The forest, too, of Taurus is 

called " ventosa " from the circumstance of its being situate on a plain and 
exposed to the winds. Notwithstanding this epithet, it* situation it con- 
sidered one of the finest in the globe. 

1 And Gaza) ver. 216. There were two cities of the name of Gaza. 
One -was the strongly-fortified city of the Philistines, so called, on the sea- 
coast, while the other was a city in the Persian province of Sogdiana. 

3 And Idumcea) ver. 216. Idnmaea in the later Jewish history and 
the Roman annals means the southern part of Judea and a small part of the 
northern part of Arabia Petraea, extending beyond the ancient Edom of 
Scriptnre. 

3 Unstable Tyre ax toell) ver. 217. The famous city of Tyre was on 
the sea-coast of Syria : at this period it had considerably fallen from its 
opulence. According to some, h is called " instabilis " from its liability to 
earthquakes, while others would have the word to mean " fickle " or "-de- 
ceitful." Virgil speaks in the First Book of the JEncid of the " Tyrii 
bilingnes," " the double-tongued Tyrians." Sidon was the neighbour of Tyre, 
and the rival of its commercial enterprise and opulence. These cities were 
famed for the production of the " mnrex " or purple dye extracted from the 
hell-fish so called, which was extremely valuable. 

4 Did the Cynomn conduct) ver. 219. The Constellation of the Lesser 
Bear was called Cynosnra from Ki/vo,- eiaa " the Dog's tail," the stars in their 
sequence being fancifully thought to resemble that object. According, how- 
ever, to another account, Cynosure was the name of a nymph who nursed 
Jupiter on Mount Ida, and for that service was raised to the stars. The 
Phoenicians of Tyre and Sidon, in navigating the ocean, took their observa- 
tions from this Constellation, while the Greeks for that purpose used Helice 
or the Greater Bear. See the Fasti of Ovid, B. iii. L 107, el ttq. 

* Memphis learned to unite) ver. 222. fie means that the Phoenicians 
were the inventors of the art of writing, before it was known to the 
Egyptians, who had not then discovered the art of making paper from the 
byblus or papyrus, and only knew the use of hieroglyphics, which they 
carved on stone. 

Kept in existence the magic tongues) ver. 224. By "magicas lingua* " 
he probably means the secrets known to the priesthood of Egypt, who pro- 
fessed to be skilled in the magic art. 



B. m. 225-237.] PHABSALIA. 103 

deserted, and Persean Tarsus 1 , and the Corycian cave 2 
opening with its rocks worn away. Mallus 3 and remote 
^Egte 4 resound with their dockyards, and the Cilician ship 5 
goes forth obedient to the law, no longer a pirate now. 

The rumour, too, of the warfare has moved the corners of 
the East, where Ganges is worshipped, who alone through- 
out all the world dares to discharge himself by a mouth 
opposite" to the rising sun, and impels Ms waves towards 
the opposing eastern winds ; here it was that the chieftain 
from Pella 7 , arriving beyond the seas of Tethys, stopped 
short, and confessed that he was conquered by the vast earth. 
Where, too, Indus carrying along his rapid stream with di- 
vided flood is not sensible of the Hydaspes mingling" with 
his waters. Those also, who drink the sweet juices 9 from the 

1 And Persean Tarsus) ver. 225. Tarsus was a very ancient city of 
Syria. According to the tradition here alluded to, it was founded by 
Perseus, the son of Jupiter and Danae, and was said to have been so called 
from the Greek <ra.giro;, " a hoof," which the winged horse Pegasus was 
said to have lost there. Other accounts ascribe its foundation to the 
Assyrian king Sardanapalus. It was the birth-place of St. Paul. 

2 A nd the Corycian cave) ver. 226. Corycus was a city of Cilieia. 
About two miles from it there was a cave or glen in the mountains, called 
the " Corycian cave," celebrated by the Poets, and famous for its saffron. 
There was another Corycian cave in Mount Parnassus, also famed as a retreat 
of the Muses. 

' J Mallux) ver. 227. Mallus was an ancient city of Cilieia, said to have 
been founded at the time of the Trojan war by Mopsus and Amphilochus. 

4 And remote ASffce) ver. 227. .ZEgse was a seaport town of Cilieia. 
There were also towns of the same name in Achaia, Macedonia, Euboea, and 
Jiolia. 

4 And the Cilician ship) ver. 228. The Cilician pirates, in return for 
the clemency they had experienced from Pompey when conquered by him, 
espoused his cause against Caesar. 

6 By a mouth opposite) ver. 230. He probably means that the Ganges 
was the only river that discharged itself into the Eastern Ocean, whence the 
sun was supposed to rise. This river is still an object of worship by those 
who live upon its banks. 

7 The chieftain from Pella) ver. 233. He alludes to Alexander the 
Great, who was born at Pella in Macedonia, and who paused in his conquests 
at the Eastern Ocean. The remark is intended as a reproach against his 
inordinate ambition in wishing that there was another world for him to 
conquer. 

8 The Hydaspes mingling) ver. 236. The Hydaspes, now called the Jelum, 
was the most northerly of the five great tributaries of the Indus. Thifl 
river formed the limit of Alexander's progress in Asia. 

9 Drink the sweet juices) ver. 287. Salmasius, rather perversely, thinks 



104 PHAKSALIA. [a ni. 237-248. 

tender cane, and those, who, tinting their hair 1 with the 
yellow drug, bind their flowing linen garments 2 with coloured 
gems. Those also, who build up their own funereal pyres, 
and, alive, ascend the heated piles 3 . Oh ! how great a glory 
is it to this race to hasten their fate by their own hands, 
and, full of life, to present to the Deities what still remains ! 
The fierce Cappadocians come; the people, now inha- 
bitants of the hardy Amanus 4 , and the Armenian who 
possesses the Niphates 5 that rolls down rocks ; the Coatrse 6 
have quitted the woods that touch the skies. You, Arabians, 
have come into a world to you unknown, wondering how 
the shadows of the groves do not fall on the left hand 7 . 

that reference is here made to the manna or aerial honey of the Arabians ; 
whereas Yossius and most others agree that it refers to the extraction of 
sugar from the sugar-cane by the natives of India. Annan, in his Feriplus 
of the Erythraean Sea, speaks of the Indians as drinking honey from canes, 
called ' sacchari,' clearly alluding to sugar. 

1 Tinting their hair) ver. 238. He speaks of the tribes of India as not 
only using dyes for staining their hair of a golden hue, but using girdles or 
zones decked with precious stones of various colours. 

* Flowing linen garments) ver. 239. Under the name "carbasa" he 
probably alludes to fine textures of cotton or linen, or perhaps silk, used 
by the natives of India. 

3 Alive, ascend the heated piles) ver. 240. He alludes to the Brahmins 
and their ceremony of Suttee or burning alive. Calanus, who is called by 
the Greek writers one of the Gymnosophists of India, was one of this class, 
and burnt himself on a pyre in the presence of the whole Macedonian army. 

4 Of the hardy Amanus) ver. 244. Amanus was a mountain of Cilicia. 
He probably speaks of the natives of Cilicia, being now the " cultores," " in- 
habitants" or " tillers" of the land, in contradistinction to their former roving 
and piratical habits. 

5 Possesses the Wiphates) ver. 245. Niphates was a mountain chain of 
Armenia, forming a prolongation of the Taurus from where it is crossed by 
the Euphrates. 

6 The Coatrce) ver. 246. The Coatrae were a nation living in the moun- 
tains, probably between Assyria and Media. Virgil, in the Georgics, B. ii. 
1. 124, speaks of the height of their trees as such that no arrow could 
pass over them. 

7 Do not fall on the left hand) ver. 248. That is to say, on the left 
hand or southward, if they stood facing the west. Under the name 
" Arabes " he intends to include the ^Ethiopians and other nations living on 
or near to the Equator. He probably alludes to the story told by Pliny in 
his Natural History, B. vi. 1. 22, relative to the inhabitants of Tapro- 
bana or Ceylon. Their ambassadors, who came to Rome to pay homage to 
Claudius, were especially surprised to see their shadows fall northward, and 
not towards the south, as in their own country. 



B. m. 249-262.] PHARSALIA. 105 

Then did the Roman frenzy influence the extreme Oretee ', 
and the Caramanian chieftains 3 , whose sky declining towards 
the south' 1 , heholds Arctus set, but not the whole of it; and 
there the swiftly-moving Bootes shines but a small part of 
the night. The region, too, of the ./Ethiopians, which would 
not be overhung by any portion of the sky that bears the 
Constellations 4 , did not, his knee inclining downward, the 
extremity of the hoof of the bending Bull extend beyond 
the Zodiac. And where with the rapid Tigris 5 the vast 
Euphrates takes his rise, streams which Persia sends forth 
from no different sources ; and it is uncertain, if the earth 
were to mix the rivers, which name in preference there would 
be for the waters. But, spreading over the fields the fertile 
Euphrates performs the part of 8 the Pharian waves ; while 
the earth with a sudden chasm sucks up the Tigris 7 , and 

1 The extreme Oretee) ver. 249. The Oritae, Oretae, or Orse, were a 
people of Gedrosia who inhabited the coast of a part of India now called 
Urboo in Beloochistan. 

2 Caramanian chieftains) ver. 250. The Caramanians inhabited the 
modern Kirman, a province of the ancient Persian empire, bounded on the 
south by the Indian Ocean. 

3 Declining towards the south) ver. 250. He means that the elevation 
of the North Pole is so very small in those regions that those Constellations 
which never set with us, appear there but very little above the horizon. 

4 Sky that bears the Constellations) ver. 254. By " signiferi poli " he 
means the Zodiac, and intends to say that ^Ethiopia lies beyond that part 
of the earth which is beneath the Zodiac, except that the hoof of the Con- 
stellation Taurus projects over it. 

* With the rapid Tigris) ver. 256. Though they do not rise in the same 
spot, both the Euphrates and the Tigris rise in the mountains of Armenia ; 
and opposite the city of Seleucia they come within 200 stadia, or about 20 
miles, of each other. They then recede from each other, and unite about 
60 miles above the mouth of the Persian Gulf. The Poet means to say that 
they are both such mighty streams, and so nearly equal in size, that if they 
were united it would be difficult to say which, as the smaller, would lose 
its name in the larger. We may here remark that Lucan is frequently very 
incorrect in his geographical descriptions. 

8 Performs the part of) ver. 260. He means that the Euphrates, by 
overflowing, like the Nile, fertilizes the country through which it passes. 

7 Suds up the Tigris) ver. 261. Seneca and some others of the -ancient 
writers mention that the Tigris disappears in its course, and then reappears 
in all its magnitude. It sinks under one of the mountains of the Taurus chain, 
and, having traversed underground 25 miles, reappears. One of the Scholiasts 
has in his commentary on this line preserved three lines composed by the 
Emperor Nero on the Tigris. As they are nowhere else to be found, they 
deserve to be quoted : 



106 PHABSALIA. [B. in. 262-274. 

conceals his hidden course, and does not exclude the river 
born again from a new source from the waters of the sea. 

Between die ranks of Ceesar and the opposing standards 
the warlike Parthians held a neutral ground, content that 
they had made them but two 1 . The wandering tribes of 
Scythia dipped their arrows, whom Bactros 2 encircles with 
its icy stream, and Hyrcania 3 with its vast forests. On 
this side the Lacedaemonian Heniochi 4 , a nation fierce in 
wielding the rein, and the Sarmatian, the neighbour of the 
savage Moschi 5 . Where the Phasis cleaves the most wealthy 
fields of the Colchians ; where runs the Halys fi fatal to 
Croesus ; where falling from the Ehipsean heights the Tanais 
has given 7 the names of different parts of the world to its 

" Quique pererratam subductus Persida Tigris 
Demerit, et longo terrarum tracing hiatu, 
Reddit quaesitas jam non quserentibus undas." . 

" And the Tigris, which, traversing beneath Persia passed through, forsakes 
it, and, travelling in prolonged chasms of the earth, restores its waters that 
were sought for to those now seeking them no longer." 

1 Made them, lut two) ver. 266. Content to have reduced their number 
to two and thus embroiled the Roman world, by slaying Crassus at Carrhae ; 
who, while he lived, was the mediator between Caesar and Pompey. 

2 Whom Bactros) ver. 267. Bactros was the name of the river that 
flowed by Bactra (now Balkh), the capital of the ancient Bactria, which 
occupied the locality of the modern Bokhara. It was conquered by 
Alexander the Great. Lucan is hardly correct in representing these tribes 
as preparing for the war, as they had been conquered by the Parthians, whom 
he has just described as being neutral. The Bactrians were a wild and war- 
like race, and probably used poisoned arrows, as here represented. 

3 And Hyrcatiia) ver. 268. Hyrcania was a fertile produce of the 
ancient Persian empire. Like Bactria it was at this time under the Par- 
thian rule, whose kings often resided in it during the summer. 

4 Tlie Lacedamonia.il Heniochi) ver. 269. He calls the Heniochi, a 
people of Colchis, Lacedaemonii, because the colony was said to have been 
founded by Amphitus and Telchius, Lacedaemonians, the charioteers of 
Castor and Pollux. The story probably arose from the fact of the word 
Heniochi in Greek signifying " charioteers." 

* Of the savage Moschi) ver. 270. The Moschi were a people of Asia, 
whose territory was originally iu Colchis, but in later times extended into 
Iberia and Armenia. 

6 Wl&re runt the Halys) ver. 272. The Halys was a river which served 
as the boundary between Lydia and Media. It was rendered famous from 
the oracle given to Croesus, the wealthy king of Lydia, that, "passing 
over the Halys, be should overthrow a mighty empire." This be took to be 
the kingdom of Media, but the event proved that it was his own, which 
was conquered by Cyrus. 

7 The Tanais has given) ver. 273. Or the river Don, which was usually 



B. m. -274-286.] PHARSALIA. 107 

banks, and, the same boundary both of Europe and of Asia, 
cutting through the confines of the mid part of the earth, 
now in this direction, now hi that, whichever way it turns, 
enlarges the world 1 . 

Where, too, the flowing strait pours forth the waves of 
Meeotis, and the Euxine sea is borne away, a vaunt wrested 
from 2 the limits of Hercules, and denies that Gades alone 3 
admits the ocean. In this part the Essedonian nations 4 , 
and thou, Arimaspian 5 , tying thy locks bound up with 
gold ; in this the bold Arian, and the Massagetan 6 satisfying 
the long fast of Sarmatian warfare with the horse on which 
he flies, and the rapid Geloni 7 . 

Not, when Cyrus leading forth his forces from the Mem- 
nonian realms 8 , and with his troops counted by the throwing 
of their darts, the Persian came down 9 , and, when the avenger 

considered to be the boundary between Europe and Asia. This river rises 
in the centre of Russia. 

1 Enlarges the world) ver. 276. Where it extends within the Asiatic line 
it widens Europe as it were, and the same with regard to Asia. 

a A vaunt wrested from) ver. 278. The meaning is that the Pontus 
Euxinus (now the Black Sea) by its magnitude detracts from the glories of 
the pillars of Hercules (now Gibraltar) by pouring into the Mediterranean a 
body of water almost as large. 

3 Tltat Gades alone) ver. 279. Gades was founded by the Phoenicians. 
It occupied the site of the present Cadiz. 

4 The Essedonian nations) ver. 280. According to Pliny, the Esse- 
doniang were a people of Scythia, near the Palus Mseotis or sea of Azof. 

* And tfiou, jirimtispmn) ver. 281. The Arimaspi were a people of 
Scythia, who were fabled to have but one eye. They were said to live on 
the banks of a river of the same name, whose sands produced gold. They 
had also gold-mines, said to be watched by griffins. 

6 And the Massagetan) ver. 283. The Massagetee were said to be in 
the habit, when overtaken by hunger, of opening veins in the "bodies of 
their horses and sucking the blood. 

7 And the rapid Geloni) ver. 283. The <jreloni were a people of 
Scythia who dwelt in Asiatic Sarmatia, east of the Tanais. They were 
said to have been of Grecian origin. The Arii were the inhabitants of a 
part of the ancient Persian empire, -which is now the eastern part of 
Khorasan and to the west of Afghanistan. 

8 From the Memnonian realms) ver. 284. He calls the realms of Cyrus 
the Great, king of Persia, " Memnonian," from Memnon, who was the son 
of Aurora, and was fabled to have come from Ethiopia, which was considered 
as a part of the east, to the Trojan war. 

9 Tlte Persian came down) ver. 286. Under the name "Perses" he 
alludes to Xerxes, the king of Persia, and his memorable expedition against 
Greece. Herodotus tells us that in order to count the numbers of his army, 



108 PHARSALIA. [u. m. 286-305. 

of his brother's love 1 beat the waves with so many fleets, 
did sovereigns so numerous have one leader. Nor ever did 
races unite so varied hi their dress, languages of people so 
different. Nations thus numerous did Fortune arouse to 
send as companions in his mighty downfall, and as obsequies 
worthy of the end of Magnus. Horn-bearing Ammon * did 
not delay to send the Marmarian troops 3 to the warfare; 
however far parched Libya extends from the western Moors, 
even to the Pareetonian Syrtes 4 on the eastern shores. Lest 
fortunate Caesar might not meet with all at once, Pharsalia 
gave the whole world to be subdued at the same moment. 

He, when he quitted the walls of trembling Rome, swept 
across the cloud-capt Alps with his hastening troops ; and 
while other nations were alarmed with terror at his fame, 
the Phocsean youth 5 amid doubtful fortunes dared to pre 
serve their fidelity 6 with no Grecian fickleness, and their 
plighted faith, and to adhere to the cause and not the fortune. 
Yet first they attempted with peaceful words to modify the 

he commanded each soldier as he passed by in review to discharge an arrow, 
by counting which he might have an exact account of their numbers. 

1 Avenger of his brother's love) ver. 286. This was Agamemnon, who led 
the Greek forces to Troy to avenge the injury done by Paris to the affections 
of his brother Menelaus in carrying off his wife. 

2 Horn-bearing Ammon) ver. 292. The country situate near the Temple 
of Jupiter Ammon in Libya, where Jupiter was worshipped under the form 
of a ram. 

3 The Marmarian troops) ver. 293. The Marmaridne were the inhabit- 
ants of Marmarica, a district between Cyrenaica and Egypt, and extending 
inland as far as the Oasis of Ammon. 

4 .The Parcetonian Syrtes) ver. 295. Paraetonium was a city of Egypt, 
situate at one of the mouths of the Nile. The meaning of this circumlocu- 
tion is, that all the nations extending from Mauritania to Egypt sided with 
Pompey. 

4 Tlte Phoccean youth) ver. 301. We may here remark that Lucan re- 
peatedly uses the word " juventus " to signify " an army," or the fighting 
men of a place ; as, among the Romans, from the age of seventeen to forty- 
six, men were considered to be " juvenes," and were, as such, liable to mili- 
tary service. 

* Dared to preserve their fidelity) ver. 301. He alludes to the inhabitants 
of Massilia, on the same site as the present city of Marseilles, in the south 
of France. It was founded by a colony of Phocaeans from Asia Minor about 
B.C. 600. Lucan falls into the error of confounding these with the inhabitants 
of Phocis in Greece ; and in the present instance he compliments them on 
not showing the usual " Graia levitas," the fickleness or want of good faith 
for which the Greeks were proverbially notorious. 



B. m. 305-336.] PHAKSALIA. 109 

impetuous wrath and stubborn feelings of the hero, and, a 
branch of the Cecropian Minerva l being borne before, they 
entreated the approaching enemy in these terms : 

" That always hi foreign wars Massilia took part in 
common with your people, whatever age is comprehended 
in the Latian annals, that same bears witness. And now, if 
in an unknown world thou art seeking any triumphs, receive 
the right hands that are pledged to foreign warfare. But if, 
discordant, you are preparing a deadly strife, if direful battles, 
to civil arms we give our tears and our dissent. By our 
hands let no accursed wounds be meddled with. If to the 
inhabitants of heaven fury had given arms, or if the earth- 
born Giants were aiming at the stars, still not either by 
arms or by prayers would human piety presume to give aid 
to Jove ; and the mortal race, ignorant of the fortunes of the 
Gods, only by his lightnings would be sensible that still the 
Thunderer reigns hi heaven. Besides, nations innumerable 
are meeting together on every side, nor does the slothful 
world so shudder at the contact of wickedness that the civil 
war stands in need of coerced swords. 

" Would, indeed, that there were the same feelings in all, 
that they would refuse to hurry on your destiny, and that no 
strange soldier would wage these battles. On beholding his 
parent, whose right hand will not grow weak ? Brothers, too, 
on opposite sides, will forbear to hurl the darts. An end is 
there to your state, if you do not wage war with those 3 
with whom it is lawful. This is the sum of our prayer ; 
leave the threatening eagles and the hostile standards afar 
from the city, and be willing to entrust thyself to our walls, 
and permit, Cffisar being admitted, the warfare to be shut- 
out. Let this place, exempt from crime, be safe to Magnus 
and to thee, that, if fate wishes well to the unconquered City, 
if a treaty pleases, there may be a place to which you may 
repair unarmed. 

" Or else, when the dangers so great of the Iberian warfare 

1 A branch of the Cecropian Minerva) ver. 306. A branch of olive, the 
symbol of peace, sacred to Minerva. 

8 Wage war with those) ver. 328. " Arma committere " here most pro- 
bably means "to engage" or "fight;" and "illis" is the ablative plural. 
Most of the commentators take the phrase to mean " to entrust arms to," or 
" put arms in the hands of," and make " illis" the dative plural 



110 PHABSALIA. [B. m. 336-355. 

invite you, why do you turn aside to us in your rapid march? 
We are of no weight in affairs, we are not of moment, a 
multitude that never has enjoyed prospering arms, exiled 
from the original abodes of our country, and, after the towers 
of burnt Phocis 1 were transferred safe on foreign shores, 
within humble walls, whom fidelity alone makes renowned 
If by siege thou dost prepare to block up our walls, and by 
force to break through our gates, we are prepared to receive 
on our roofs the torches and the darts, to seek, the streams 
being turned aside, draughts of water rescued 2 from your 
force, and, thirsting, to suck at the dug up earth ; and, if 
bounteous Ceres should fail, then with stained jaws to eat 
things horrid to be looked upon and foul to be touched. 
Nor does this people fear to suffer for liberty that which 
Saguntum, besieged 3 in the Punic warfare, underwent. 
Torn from the bosoms of their mothers, and vainly drawing 
at the breasts dried up with thirst, the children shall be 
hurled into the midst of the flames. The wife, too, from 
her dear husband shall demand her death. Brothers shall 
exchange wounds, and by compulsion this civil war in pre- 
ference will they wage." 4 

1 Towers of burnt Phocis) ver. 340. By the word "Phocis" here, they 
properly mean Phocaea in Asia Minor, from which their ancestors had been 
expelled by Harpagus, the general of Cyrus the Great, on which they colo- 
nized Massilia. See the note to 1. 301. 

* Draughts of water rescued) ver. 345. " Haustus raptos," water with- 
drawn from them by turning the streams out of their course. 

3 Saguntum, besieged) ver. 350. Sagimtnm was a city of Spain, on the 
site of the present Murviedro. It was faithful to the Romans, and was be- 
sieged by Hannibal for eight months in the second Punic war. When 
taken, the inhabitants set fire to the city and threw themselves and their 
wives and children into the flames. 

4 In preference will they vxtge) Ter. 355. Caesar gives the following 
account of this interview in his Civil War, B. i. I. 35. Having heard that 
I)omitius Ahenobarbus, whom he had lately released, had been ordered to 
seize Massilia, he hastened thither from Rome. " Caesar sent for fifteen of 
the principal persons of Massilia to attend him. To prevent the war com- 
mencing there, he remonstrated to the effect that they ought to follow the 
precedent set by all Italy, rather than submit to the will of any one man ; 
and made use of such other arguments as he thought would tend to bring 
them back to reason. The deputies reported this speech to their countrymen, 
and by the authority of the state brought back this answer: ' That they 
understood that the Roman people were divided into two factions; that they 



B. ra. 355-374.] PHAKSALIA. Ill 

Thus does the Grecian youth make an end ; when, now 
betrayed by his agitated features, the anger of the chieftain 
at length in a loud voice testifies his sorrow : 

" Vainly does assurance of my haste encourage you Greeks. 
Even though we should be speeding onward to the furthest 
regions of the west, still there is time to raze Massilia. Kejoice, 
ye cohorts ; by the favour of the Fates a war is presented 
before you. As the wind loses its strength unless the dense 
woods meet it with their oaks, being dissipated in empty 
space ; so it is harmful to me that foes should be wanting ; 
and we think it an injury to our arms, unless those who 
could be conquered rebel. But if I go alone, degenerate, 
with arms laid aside, then are their dwellings open to me. 
Now, not so much to shut me out, but to inclose me, do they 
wish. But yet they would keep afar the direful contagion 
of war forsooth. You shall suffer retribution * for suing for 
peace ; and you shall learn that, during my life, there is 
nothing more safe than warfare, myself the leader." 

After he has thus spoken, he turns his march towards 2 
the fearless city; then he beholds the walls shut, and for- 

themselves had neither judgment nor ability to decide which had the juster 
cause; that the heads of these factions were Cneras Pompey and Cains 
Caesar, the two patrons of the state; the former of whom had granted to 
their state the lands of the Volcae Arecomici and Helvii ; the latter had 
assigned them a part of his conquests in Gaul, and had augmented their 
revenue. Wherefore, having received equal favours from both, they ought 
to show equal regard for both, and assist neither against the other, nor admit 
either into their city or harbours.'" 

1 You shall suffer retribution) ver. 370. If hia own account is true, 
Caesar had some grounds for being offended at the duplicity of the Massi- 
lians. He says, in the Civil War, B. i. c. 36, " While this treaty was 
going forward, Domitius arrived at Massilia with his fleet, and was received 
into the city, and made governor of it. The chief management of the war 
was entrusted to him. At his command they sent the fleet to all parta; 
they seized all the merchantmen they could meet with, and carried them 
into the harbour. They applied the sails, timber, and rigging with which 
they were furnished to rig and refit their other vessels." 

2 Turns his march towards) ver. 373. Caesar says, in the Civil War, 
B. i. c. 37, " Provoked at such ill treatment, Caesar led three legions against 
Massilia, and resolved to provide turrets and mantelets to assault the town, 
and to build twelve ships at Arelas, which, being completed and rigged in 
thirty days from the time the timber was cut down, and being brought to 
Massilia, he put under the command of Decimus Brutus, and left Caius Tre- 
bonius, his lieutenant, to invest the city." 



112 PHARSALIA. [B. m. 374-404. 

tified by a dense band of youths. Not far from the walls a 
mound of earth rising aloft, its top widening, spreads out 
a little plain ; this rock seems to the chieftain fitted to be 
surrounded with a long fortification, and very well suited for 
a safe encampment. The nearest part of the city rises with 
a high citadel, equal in height to the mound, and fields 
are situate in the valley between. Then did a thing please 
him, to be brought about with immense labour, to join the 
separated elevations by a vast mound. But first, that he 
might inclose the entire city, where it is surrounded by the 
earth, Csesar drew a long work from the camp to the sea, 
and, encircling the springs and the pastures of the plain 
with a fosse, with turf and unmixed earth he raised out- 
works that elevated their numerous towers. 

Well worthy now to be remembered did this befall the 
Grecian city, and an eternal honor, that, not provoked at 
first 1 , nor yet prostrated by very fear, it stayed the headlong 
course of a war that raged on every side, and ah 1 others being 
seized instantaneously by Csesar, it alone was conquered with 
delay. How much is it that his destinies are stayed, and 
that Fortune, hastening to set her hero over the whole world, 
loses these days ! 

Then far and wide do all the forests fall, and the woods 
are spoiled of their oaks, that, as crumbling earth and twigs 
keep up the middle of the mass, the wood may keep close 
the earth knit together by the framed construction of its 
sides, that the mound being pressed down 2 may not give 
way beneath the towers. 

There was a grove, never violated during long ages, which 
with its knitted branches shut in the darkened air and the 
cold shade, the rays of the sun being far removed. This 
no rustic Pans, and Fauns and Nymphs all-powerful in the 
groves, possessed, but sacred rites of the Gods barbarous 
in their ceremonial, and elevations crowned with ruthless 

1 Not provoked at first) ver. 389. "Non impulsa, nee ipso strata metu." 
Cortius suggests this translation of the passage : " Not smitten down or 
laid prostrate with fear." " Non impulsa " seems, however, to mean, " not 
acting precipitately through provocation/' and not to depend upon " metu." 

3 The mound being pressed down) ver. 398. According to Caesar, these 
operations were carried on while he was fighting against Afranius and 
Petreiui, the generals of Pompey, in Spain. 



B. in. 404-433.] PHAESALIA. 113 

altars, and every tree was stained 1 with human gore. If at 
all, antiquity, struck with awe at the Gods of heaven, has 
been deserving of belief, upon these branches, too, the birds 
of the air dread to perch, and the wild beasts to lie in the 
caves; nor does any wind blow upon those groves, and 
lightnings hurled from the dense clouds ; a shuddering in 
themselves 2 prevails among the trees that spread forth their 
branches to no breezes. Besides, from black springs plen- 
teous water falls, and the saddened images of the Gods a are 
devoid of art, and stand unsightly formed from hewn trunks. 
The very mouldiness and paleness of the rotting wood now 
renders people stricken with awe : not thus do they dread 
the Deities consecrated with ordinary forms ; so much does 
it add to the terror not to know what Gods they are in 
dread of. Fame, too, reported that full oft the hollow ca- 
verns roared amid the earthquake, and that yews that had 
fallen rose again, and that flames shone from a grove that 
did not burn, and that serpents embracing the oaks en- 
twined around them. 

The people throng that place with no approaching wor- 
ship, but have left it to the Gods. When Phoebus is in 
the mid sky, or dark night possesses the heavens, the priest 
himself dreads the approach, and is afraid to meet with the 
guardian of the grove 4 . 

This forest he commanded to fall beneath the aimed 
iron ; for close by the works and untouched in former war 
it stood most dense in growth amid the bared mountains. 
But the valiant bands trembled, and, moved by the venerable 
sanctity of the place, they believed that if they should touch 
the sacred oaks, the axes would rebound back 5 against their 
own limbs. Csesar, when he beheld his cohorts involved in 

1 Every tree was stained) ver. 405. By this he would seem to imply that 
Druidiciil rites were performed in the wood. 

* A shuddering in themselves) ver. 411. By the use of "suus" he means 
that the leaves are left entirely undisturbed by the winds. 

3 Images of the Gods) ver. 412. These figures of the Deities were rough 
unhewn logs of wood, of the kind called by the Greeks auregt/X*. 

4 The guardian of the grove) ver. 425. It was a prevalent belief that 
the Divinities walked on the earth at midday, and that they were especially 
enraged against mortals who presented themselves in their path. 

* Would rebound back) ver. 431. They believed that the axe would 
rebound as a punishment for their profaneness. 

I 



114 PHABSALIA. [B. HL 483-457. 

great alarm, first daring to poise a hatchet snatched up, and 
with the iron to cut down the towering oak, the iron being 
buried in the violated wood, thus says : " Now then, that no 
one of you may hesitate to hew down the wood, believe that 
I have incurred the guilt." 

Then did all the throng obey, not, all fear removed, free 
from care, but the wrath of the Gods and of Ceesar being 
weighed. Down fall the ashes, the knotty holm-oak is hurled 
down ; the wood of Dodona, too, and the alder more suited 
to the waves, the cypress, too, that bears witness to no ple- 
beian 1 funeral mourning, then first lay aside their foliage, 
and, spoiled of leaves, admit the day, and thrown down 
with its trunks thickly set the falling wood supports itself. 
Looking on, the nations of the Gauls lament, but the youth 
shut up within the walls exult. For who can suppose that 
the Gods are insulted with impunity? Fortune spares many 
that are guilty ; and only with die wretched can the Deities 
be angered. And when enough of the grove is cut down, 
they bring waggons, sought amid the fields ; and the hus- 
bandmen bewail, the oxen being carried off, the yearly pro- 
duce of the soil relaxed from the curving plough. 

The general, however, impatient with a contest destined 
to linger on before the walls, turning towards the Spanish 
forces and the extremities of the world, orders the warfare to 
be carried on 2 . A mound is erected with props studded with 
iron 8 , and receives two towers equalling the walls in height; 

1 Witness to no plebeian) ver. 442. The cypress was planted near the 
tombs of the rich, and was sometimes used for the purposes of the funeral 
pile. It was a tree of comparative rarity and great value. A branch of it 
was also placed at the door of the house in which a person of station was 
lying dead. This tree is said to have been considered an emblem of death 
from the fact that when once an incision has been made in it, it dies. 

* Orders the warfare to be carried on) Ter. 455. Leaving the conduct of 
the war to Caius Trebonius, his legate. 

8 Wilfi props studded with iron) ver. 455. " Stellatis aribns." This 
expression has caused great perplexity among the commentators, and Cortius 
has come to the conclusion that it alludes to the axle-trees of the wheels upon 
which the " agger" or mound was placed and then wheeled to the city. It is 
much more likely that it signifies cross beams studded with iron, which were 
used in constructing the agger which they were building round the city. 
This operation is described by Caesar in the Civil War, B. ii. c. 1 5, and in 
the following passage the cross beams are referred to: " They began, there- 
fore, to make a mound of a new construction, never heard of before, of two 



B. m. 457-482.] PHARSALIA. 115 

these are fastened with no wood to the earth, but moved 
along a lengthened space, the cause lying concealed. When 
so great a mass was tottering, the youth supposed that the 
wind seeking to burst forth had shaken the empty recesses 
of the earth, and wondered that their walls were standing 
Thence did the darts fall upon the lofty citadel of the city. 
But a greater power was there in the Grecian weapons 
against the Roman bodies. For the lance, not hurled by 
arms alone, but discharged by the tightened whirlwind force 
of the balista, did not, content to pass through but one 
side, cease in its course ; but, opening a way through both 
arms and through bones, death left behind, it flies on : after 
the wound a career still remains for the weapon. 

But as often as a stone is hurled by the vast impulse of 
the blow, just as a rock, Avhich old age, aided by the power 
of the winds, has separated from the height of the mountain, 
rushing onwards it bears down everything; and not only 
de'prives of life the bodies it has dashed against, but scatters 
hi every direction whole limbs together with the bleod. But 
when, sheltered beneath the stout tortoise 1 , valour approaches 
the hostile walls, and the foremost bear arms connected with 
the arms of those behind, and the uplifted shield protects the 
helmet, those which, before hurled from the distant retreats, 
proved destructive, now fall behind their backs ; nor is it 
now an easy task to the Greeks to direct their charges, or to 
change the level of then- engines of war adapted for hurling 
weapons to a distance ; but, content with heavy masses alone, 
they hurl down stones with their bared arms. While the 



walls of brick, each six feet thick, and to lay floors over them of almost the 
same breadth with the mound, made of timber. But wherever the space be- 
tween the walls or the weakness of the timber seemed to require it, pillars 
were placed underneath and traversed beams laid on to strengthen the work, 
and the space which was floored was covered over with hurdles, and the 
hurdles plastered over with mortar." 

1 Sheltered beneath the stout tortoise) ver. 474. The "testudo" was a 
mode of attacking a besieged city, by the soldiers uniting their shields over 
their heads, locking one in the other, and thus making a compact covering 
for their bodies. The "testndo" also meant a kind of penthouse moving on 
wheels, under cover of which the besiegers worked the battering ram. The 
name in this case was suggested by the resemblance which the ram pre- 
sented to a tortoise thrusting its head forwards from its shell and drawing it 
back again. 

i a 



116 PHARSALIA. [B. m. 482-509. 

connected chain of arms 1 exists, just as roofs rattle, struck by 
the harmless hailstones, so does it ward off all the missiles ; 
but after the excited valour of the men, the soldiers being 
wearied, breaks down the lengthened fence, single arms give 
way beneath the continuous blows. 

Then, covered with light earth 2 , the mantelet moves on, 
concealed under the sheds and screened front of which they 
now attempt to undermine the lower part of the walls, and 
with iron implements to overthrow them ; now the batter- 
ing ram, more mighty with its suspended blows, impelled 
endeavours to loosen the texture of the solid wall, and to 
strike away one from the stones placed above. But struck 
by flames from above and fragments of vast masses, and 
many a stake, and the blows of oaks hardened by fire, the 
hurdle roof, smitten, gives way; and, his labour spent hi 
vain, the wearied soldier seeks again the tents. 

It was at first 3 the greatest wish of the Greeks that their 
walls might stand. Now, still further, they prepare to make 
a charge with their troops ; and, attacking by night, they 
conceal under their arms blazing torches, and the bold 
youth sally forth 4 ; no spear, no death-dealing bow, but fire, 
is the weapon of the men, and the wind sweeping onward 
the flames bears them throughout the Koman fortifications 
with a swift course. Nor, although it struggles with green 
timber, does the fire display slight strength; but borne 
away from every torch it follows after extended volumes of 
black smoke; it consumes not only the wood but huge 
stones, and the solid rocks dissolve into dust. The mound 
falls prostrate, and as it lies still longer does it appear. 

Hope by land now departed from the conquered, and it 

1 While the connected chain of arms) ver. 482. "Dum fuit armornm 
series." " So long as the shields kept firmly locked, the one in the other." 

3 Covered with light eartfi) ver. 487. The " vineae," or mantelets, were 
covered with earth to prevent them from being set on fire from above by the 
enemy. 

3 It was at first) ver. 497. He means that it had been the limit of their 
wishes that their walls might stand and the city remain uncaptured, but now 
they prepare to sally forth and attack the enemy. 

4 The bold youth sally forth) ver. 500. The Poet conceals the fact re- 
lated by Caesar that this sally took place under circumstances of considerable 
treachery, when, at their own request, a truce had been granted them, and 
they were awaiting the arrival of Caesar from Spain. See the Civil War, 
B. ii. c. 12, 13, 14. 



B. ni. 509-527.] PHARSALIA. 117 

pleased them to try their fortune on the deep sea. Not 
with painted oak did the resplendent tutelary Deity 1 grace 
the ornamented barks, but rough, and just as the tree falls 
on the mountains, is a firm surface put together for the 
naval warfare. And now, attending the towered ship of 
Brutus 2 , the fleet had come into the waves of the Rhone 
with the tide, making for the land of Stoechas*. The Gre- 
cian youth 4 as well was wishful to entrust all its strength 
to the Fates, and armed the aged men with the lads 6 inter- 
mingled. Not only did the fleet, which was then standing 
on the waves, receive the men ; they sought again, too, the 
ships worn out in the dock-yards. 

When Phoebus, spreading his morning rays upon the 
seas, has refracted them on the waters, and the sky is free 
from clouds, and, Boreas being banished and the south 
winds holding their peace, prepared for the warfare the sea 
lies calm, each one moves his ship from each station, and 
by equal arms on the one side the ships of Caesar, on the 
other by Grecian rowers the fleet is impelled ; urged on 

1 Tlie resplendent tutelary Deity) ver. 510. The statue of the " tutela" or 
"tutelar Divinity" of the ship was placed at the stern. This was distinct 
from the " insigne," which was placed at the figure-head. See the Tristia 

* of Ovid, where he says that the " insigne " of the vessel in which he sailed 
for Pontus was a helmet, while Minerva was the " tutela" of it. 

2 The towered ship of Brutiis) ver. 514. His bark was thus distinguished 
as being the Praetorian or admiral's ship, he having been left in command of 
the fleet by Caesar. This was D. Junius Brutus Albinus, who had served 
under Caesar in Gaul. After the siege of Massilia, during the Civil War, 
Caesar gave him the command of Further Gaul, and took every opportunity 
of showing him marks of favour. Notwithstanding this, he joined the mur- 
derers of Caesar, and enjoying his full confidence, was sent to conduct him 
to the Senate-house for the purpose of assassination. He was afterwards 
deservedly put to death by Capenus, a Sequanian, by order of Antony. 

3 The land of Stcechas) ver. 516. The Stoechades were a cluster of 
islands, five in number, in the Mediterranean, to the east of Massilia, where 
the Massilians kept an armed force to protect their trade against pirates. 
They are now called the Isles d'Hierea. 

* The Grecian youth) ver. 516. He means the Massilians, as descendants 
of the rhocuiims, whom Lucan supposes to have been Greeks. According to 
Caesar, this naval engagement between Brutus and the Massilians took place 
before the attack by land ; and the Massilians were aided by Lucius Nasi- 
dius, who had been sent by Pompey with sixteen ships. See the Civil 
War, B. ii. c. 3, 7. 

4 With the tads) ver. 518. " Ephebis." " Ephebi " was the name given 
to those between the ages of 16 and 20. 



118 PHARSALIA. [B. ra. 527-559. 

by oars the ships shake again, and the repeated strokes 
move on the lofty barks. Both strong three-oared galleys, 
and those which the rising ranks of rowers built up fourfold, 
move on, and those which dip in the seas still more pine- 
wood oars, ships in numbers, surround the wings of the 
Roman fleet. This force breasts the open sea. In the 
centre, in form of a crescent, the Liburnian barks ', content 
to increase with two ranks of oars, fall back. But the Prae- 
torian ship of Brutus more lofty than all is impelled by six 
tiers of oars, and carries a tower along the deep, and seeks, 
the seas from afar with its highest oars. 

Where there is just so much sea intervening that either 
fleet could cross orer to the otlwr with the oars once pulled, 
innumerable voices are mingled in the vast expanse ; and 
the sound of the oars is drowned in the clamour, nor can 
any trumpets be heard. Then they skim along the azure 
main, and stretch along the benches, and strike their 
breasts with the oars. When first beaks meeting beaks 
send forth a sound, the ships run astern, and the hurled 
darts as they fall fill the air and the vacant deep. And 
now, the prows separated, the wings extend, and, the fleet 
sundered, the opposing ships are received. Just as, so oft 
as the tide struggles against the Zephyrs and the eastern 
gales, in this direction run the waves, hi that the sea ; so, 
when the ships hi the ploughed-up tide describe their vary- 
ing tracks, the sea which the one fleet impels onwards with 
its oars, the other beats back. 

But the pine-tree ships of the Greeks were skilful both to 
challenge to the battle and to resort to flight, and to change 
their course with no wide sweep, and with no tardiness to obey 
the turning helm. But the lloman ship was more sure in, 
affording a keel firmly laid, and convenience to the warriors 
equal to the dry land. Then said Brutus to the pilot sitting 
at the ensign-bearing stern : " Dost thou suffer the battle to> 

1 The Liburnian Janb) ver. 534. " Libarna," or " Libunrica," was a 
name given to every ship of war, from a " bireme" up to those with six 
ranks of oars. Pliny tells us that they were formed with sharp bows to> 
offer the least possible resistance to the water. They were originally con- 
structed by the Liburnians, a people of Dalmatia, and were then probably 
limited in size to two ranks of oars. They are said to have been first used 
by the Romans at the battle of Actium. The " Liburnae" here mentioned, 
from the words " ordine gemino," appear to have had but two ranks of oars. 



B. m. 559-588.] PHAKSALIA. 119 

be shifting about upon the deep, and dost thou contend with 
the vagaries of the ocean ? Now close the warfare ; oppose 
the mid part of the vessels to the Phocsean beaks." 

He obeyed, and sidelong he laid the alder barks before 
the foe. Then, whatever ship tried the oaken sides of 
that of Brutus, conquered by her own blow T captured, she 
stuck fast 1 to the one she had struck. But others both 
grappling-irons united and smooth chains, and they held 
themselves on by the oars'- ; on the covered sea the warfare 
stood fixed to the same spot. 

Now no longer are the darts hurled from the shaken arms, 
nor do the wounds fall from afar by means of the hurled 
weapons ; and hand meets hand. In a naval fight the sword 
effects the most. Each one stands upon the bulwark of 
his own ship, facing full the blows of the enemy ; and none 
fall slain hi their own vessels. The deep blood foams in 
the waves, and the tide is thickened with clotted gore. The 
ships, too, which the chains of iron thrown on board are 
dragging, the same do the dead bodies clogged together 
hinder from being united. Some, half-dead, fall into the 
vast deep, and drink of the sea mingled with their own 
blood. Some, adhering to life struggling with slowly-coming 
death, perish in the sudden wreck of the dismantled ships. 
Javelins, missing their aim, accomplish their slaughter in 
the sea, and whatever weapon falls, with its weight used to 
no purpose, finds a wound on being received hi the midst of 
the waves. 

A Roman ship hemmed in by Phocsean barks, its crew di- 
vided, with equal warfare defends the right side and the left ; 
from the high stern of which, while Tagus maintains the fight, 
and boldly seizes hold of the Grecian flag :i , he is pierced both 
hi back and breast at the same moment by hurled darts ; in 

1 Captured, she stuck fast) ver. 564. The shock was so great that she 
was impaled, an it were, on the beak of the large ship of Brutus. 

3 Held themselves on fiy the oars) ver. 566, Oars being inserted between 
oars, the ships lying broadside to broadside. 

3 Hold of the Grecian flag) ver. 586. " Aplustre." In the ancient ships 
the upper part of the stern often had an ornament called " aplustre," which 
formed the highest part of the poop. It is most probable that the form of it 
was borrowed from the tail of the fish. The "aplustre" rising behind the 
helmsman served in some measure to shelter him from wind and rain ; and a 
lantern was sometimes suspended from it. 



120 PHARSALIA. [B. in. 588-615. 

the midst of his breast the iron meets, and the blood stands, 
uncertain from which wound to flow, until the plenteous 
gore at the same time expels both the spears, and rends 
asunder his life, and scatters death in the wounds. 

Hither also the right hand of hapless Telon directed his 
ship, than which no hand more aptly, when the sea was 
boisterous, did the barks obey ; nor was the morrow's 
weather better known to any one, whether he looks at Phoe- 
bus or whether at the horns of the moon, hi order always to 
trim the sails to the coming winds. He with the beak had 
broken the ribs of a Latian bark; but quivering javelins 
entered the middle of his breast, and the right hand of the 
dying pilot turned away the ship. While Gyareus attempted 
to leap on board the friendly bark, he received the iron 
driven through his suspended entrails, and pinned to the 
ship, the dart holding him back, there he hung. 

Two twin brothers are standing, the glory of their fruitful 
mother, whom the same womb bore to differing fates. Cruel 
death separates the heroes ; and the wretched parents recog- 
nize the one left behind, all mistake being now removed, a 
cause for everlasting tears. He always renews their grief, 
and presents his lost brother to them as they mourn. Of 
these, the one, the oars of two ships being mingled sideways, 
comb-like indented, dares from a Grecian stern to lay hands 
upon 1 a Hi i] iiai i bark, but from above a heavy blow lops it 
off; still, however, with the effort with which it has grasped 
it keeps hold, and as it dies, holding fast with tightened 
nerve, it stiffens. By his mischance his valour waxes 
stronger; mutilated, more high-spirited wrath has he, and 

1 To lay hands upon) ver. 610. A similar story to this is told of Cynae- 
gyrus, the brother of the poet JJschylus, who, when the Persians were en- 
deavouring to escape by sea, seized one of their ships with his right hand, 
which was cut off. Justin magnifies the story, and states that he held with 
both hands, which were successively cut off, and then held on with his teeth. 
Lucan, with his usual distortion of facts at all favourable to Caesar, here 
attributes to the Massilians a valorous exploit which was, in reality, per- 
formed by a soldier of Caesar's array. Suetonius says that, " Acilius, a soldier 
of Caesar, in the naval battle at Massilia, having seized with his right hand 
the ship of the enemy, and it being cut off, imitating the memorable example 
of Cynaegyrus among the Greeks, leaped on board the ship and drove all be- 
fore him with his shield." Plutarch and Valerius Maximua mention the same 
circumstance. 



B. m. 615-645.] PHARSALIA. 121 

he renews the combat with valorous left hand, and about to 
tear away his right hand he stretches out over the waves. 
This hand, too, is cut off with the entire arm. Now de- 
prived of shield and weapons, he is not stowed away in the 
bottom of the ship, but, exposed and covering his brother's 
arms with his naked breast, pierced by many a spear, he 
still persists ; and weapons that were to have fallen to the de- 
struction of many of his own friends he receives with a death 
that he has now earned. Then he summons his life, fleeting 
with many a wound, into his wearied limbs, and nerves his 
members with all the blood that is remaining, and, his 
members failing in strength, he leaps on board the hostile 
bark, destined to injure it by his weight alone. 

The ship, heaped up with the slaughter of the men, and 
filled with much blood, received numerous blows on its 
slanting sides. But after, its ribs broken, it let hi the sea 
being filled to the top of the hatches, it descended into the 
waves, sucking in the neighbouring waters with a whirling 
eddy. Cleft asunder by the sunk ship, the waves divided, and 
in the place of the bark the sea closed up. Many wondrous 
instances of various fates besides did that day afford upon 
the main. 

While a grappling-iron was fastening its grasping hooks 
upon a ship, it fixed on Lycidas. He would have been 
sunk in the deep ; but his friends hindered it and held 
fast his suspended thighs. Torn away he is rent in two ; 
nor, as though from a wound, does his blood slowly flow ; 
the veins torn asunder 1 , on every side it falls ; and the down- 
ward flow of his life's blood passing into his rent limbs is 
intercepted by the waters. The life of no one slain is parted 
with by a passage so great; the lower part of him muti- 
lated gives to death the limbs deprived of their vitals ; but 
where the swelling lungs are situate, where the entrails are 
warm, there does death delay for a long time ; and having 

1 The veins lorn asunder) ver. 639. This and the next four lines are said 
to have been repeated by Lucan when dying by a similar death ; his veins 
having been opened, at his own request, when commanded by Nero to slay 
himself. Many of the learned, however, do not believe this story, while 
others state that the lines beginning at 1. 811 in the Ninth Book were the 
ones so repeated. 



122 PHAKSALIA. [B. ra. 645-679. 

struggled much with this portion of the man, hardly does it 
take possession of all the limbs. 

While, too eager for fight, the company of one ship is 
pressing straight against the side, and leaves the deck empty 
where it is free from the enemy, the vessel, overturned by the 
accumulated weight, within its hollow hull incloses both sea 
and sailors ; nor is it allowed them to throw out their arms 
hi the vast deep, but they perish in the inclosed waves. 

Then was a remarkable kind of dreadful death beheld, 
when by chance ships of opposite sides transfixed with their 
beaks a youth as he swam. His breast divided hi the middle 
at such mighty blows ; nor with the ground bones were the 
limbs able to prevent the brazen beaks from re-echoing. 
His middle burst asunder, through his mouth the blood, 
mingled with the entrails, spouted forth corrupt matter. After 
they backed the ships with the oars, and the beaks with- 
drew, the body, with the pierced breast, being cast into the 
sea admitted the water into the wounds. 

The greatest part of a crew being shipwrecked, strug- 
gling against death with expanded arms, rushed to receive 
the aid of a friendly ship ; but when they caught hold of 
the woodwork on high with forbidden arms, and the bark, 
likely to perish, swayed to and fro from the multitude 
received, the impious crew from above struck at the middle 
of their arms with the sword : leaving their arms hanging 
from the Grecian ship, they were slain by the hands of their 
own side ; no longer did the waves support on the surface 
of the sea the heavy trunks. 

And now, all the soldiers stripped bare, the weapons being 
expended, fury finds arms ; one hurls an oar at the foe ; but 
others whirl round with stout arms the wrenched-up flag- 
staff l , and the benches torn away, the rowers being driven 
off. For the purposes of fighting they break up the ships. 
The bodies slain they catch as they are falling overboard, 
and spoil the carcases of the weapons Many, wanting darts, 
draw the deadly javelin wrenched out from then- own entrails, 
and with the left hand clench fast their wounds, so that the 
blood may allow a firm blow, and may start forth after hav- 
ing hurled the hostile spear. 

1 Wrenched-up flag-staff) ver. 672. " Aplustre." See the Note to L 586. 



B. in. 680-711.] PHARSALTA. 123 

Yet upon this ocean nothing causes more destruction, 
than the antagonist opposed to the sea. For fire fixed to 
unctuous torches 1 , and alive, beneath a covering of sulphur, 
is spread about ; but the ships ready to afford a nutriment,, 
now with pitch, now with melted wax, spread the confla- 
gration. Nor do the waves conquer the flames ; and, the 
barks now scattered over the sea, the fierce fire claims the 
fragments for itself. This one takes to the waves, that 
in the sea he may extinguish the flames ; these, that they 
may not be drowned, cling to the burning spars. Amid 
a thousand forms of death, that single end is an object of 
dread, by which they have begun to perish. Nor is their 
valour idle in shipwreck. They collect darts thrown up by 
the sea, and supply them to the ships, and with failing 
efforts ply their erring hands through the waves. Now 
if but small the supply of weapons that is afforded, they 
make use of the sea. Fierce enemy clutches hold of enemy, 
and they delight to sink with arms entwined, and to die 
drowning the foe. 

In that mode of fighting there was one Phocsean skilled 
at keeping his breath beneath the waves, and examining 
in the sea if anything had been, sunk in the sands, and at 
wrenching up the tooth of the fluke too firmly fixed, as 
often as the anchor had proved insensible to the tightened 
rope. He took the enemy quite down when grappled with, 
and then, victorious, returned to the surface of the water ; 
but, while he believed that he was rising amid the vacant 
waves, he met with the ships, and at last remained for 
good beneath the sea. Some threw their arms around the 
hostile oars, and withheld the flight of the ships. Not to 
throw away their deaths was the greatest care ; many a one, 
dying, applied his wounds to the stern, and warded off the 
blows from the beaks. 

Lygdamus, a slinger with the Balearic sling 2 , aiming with 

1 Fire fixed to unctuous torches} ver. 681. This was probably a compo- 
sition which was sometimes called " Greek fire," and similar to our wildfire. 
Darts were used which they called " phalaricae," and which being dipped 
into this combustible matter were then hurled against ships or wooden 
towers. This weapon was said to have been particularly used by the people 
of Saguntum. See the Sixth Book, 1. 198. 

1 Tht Balearic sling) Ter. 710. See the First Book, I. 229. 



124 PHARSALIA. [B. ra. 711-750. 

the hurled bullet at Tyrrhenus as he stood on the lofty ele- 
vation of the prow, shattered his hollow temples with the 
solid lead. Expelled from their sockets, after the blood had 
burst all the ligaments, the eyes started forth; his sight 
destroyed, he stood amazed, and thought that this was the 
darkness of death ; but after he found that strength existed 
in his limbs, he said : " You, O companions, just as you are 
wont to direct the missiles, place me also straight in a direc- 
tion for hurling darts. Employ, Tyrrhenus, what remains 
of life hi all the chances of war. This carcase, when dead, 
in a great degree is of considerable use to the warriors ; 
in the place of one living shalt thou be struck by the blow." 
Thus having said, with aimless hand he hurled the dart 
against the foe, but still not without effect. 

This Argus, a youth of noble blood, received, not quite 
where the midriff slopes down to the loins, and falling down 
he aided the weapon with his own weight. Now stood the 
unhappy sire of Argus in the opposite part of the conquered 
ship ; in the days of his youth he would not have yielded to 
any one in Phocsean arms : conquered by age his strength 
had decayed, and, worn out with old age, he was a model of 
valour, not a soldier. He, seeing the death, often stumbling, 
being an aged man, came between the benches of the long 
ship to the stern, and found the panting limbs. No tears fell 
from his cheeks, he did not beat his breast, but grew stiff 
all over his body with distended hands. Night came on, and 
dense shades spread over his eyes, and as he looked upon him 
he ceased to recognize the wretched Argus. He sinking, on 
seeing his father, raised his head and his now languid neck ; 
no voice issued from his loosened jaws ; only with his silent 
features did he ask a kiss and invite his father's right hand 
to close his eyes. When the old man was relieved from his 
torpor, and his grief, caused by the bloodshed, began to gain 
strength, " I will not," he exclaimed, " lose the time granted 
by the cruel Gods, and I will pierce my aged throat. Argus, 
grant pardon to thy wretched parent, that I have fled from 
thy embrace, thy last kisses. The warm blood has not yet 
quitted thy wounds, and but half-dead thou dost lie, and 
niayst still be the survivor." 

Thus having said, although he had stained the hilt of the 
sword driven through his entrails, still, with a headlong leap, 



B. m. 750-762.] PHAKSALIA. 125 

he descended beneath the deep waves. His life hastening 
to precede the end of his son he did not entrust to but one 
form of death. 

Now do the fates of the chieftains take a turn, nor is the 
event of the warfare any longer doubtful: of the Grecian 
fleet the greatest part is sunk; but other ships, changing 
their rowers \ carry their own conquerors ; a few with pre- 
cipitate flight reach their haven. What wailing of parents 
was there in the city! What lamentations of matrons 
along the shore ! Often did the wife, the features being 
disfigured by the waves, embracing the dead body of a 
Roman, believe them to be the features of her husband ; and, 
the funeral pile being lighted, wretched parents contended 
for the mutilated body. 

But Brutus, victorious on the deep, added to the arms of 
Csesar the first honor gained on the waves. 

1 Changing their rowers) ver. 754. On being taken. Caesar says, in the 
Civil War, B. ii. c. 7, that five of the Massilian ships were sunk, and four 
taken. 



126 

BOOK THE FOURTH. 

CONTENTS. 

In the meantime Caesar arrives in Spain, where Afranius and Petreiiu are 
in command of Pompey's forces, consisting of Romans and Spaniards, 1-10. 
A battle is fought at Ilerda, 11-47. By reason of the rains in the spring 
an inundation ensues, and Caesar's camp is overflowed, 48-90. A famine 
prevails, 91-97. And then a flood, 98-120. When the waters subside 
Petreius departs from Ilerda, 121-147. Caesar comes up with him, and 
a battle is fought, 148-156. Caesar commands the flying enemy to be 
intercepted, 157-166. Both sides pitch theircamps. The fellow-citizens 
recognize each other, and interchange courtesies, 167-194. Bat Petreius 
puts an end to this good feeling, and calls his own men to arms, 195-211. 
He then harangues his troops, 212-235. The warfare is resumed, 236-253. 
The Pompeian troops fly towards Ilerda, 254-263. Caesar shuts them 
out from a supply of water, 264-266. The sufferings of the Pompeians 
are described, 267-836. Afranius sues for peace, 837-362. Which Caesar 
grants to the enemy, 363-401. In the meantime, Antony, the lieutenant 
of Caesar, is besieged by the adherents of Pompey on the shores of the 
Adriatic, and his troops are suffering from famine, 402-414. He then 
attempt* to escape by sea, 415-432. Loose chains are placed by the 
enemy beneath the waves, which intercept the flight of one of Antony's 
rafts, 433-464. Vulteius, the commander of the raft, exhorts his men to 
slay each other rather than fall into the hands of the enemy, 465-520. 
They obey his commands, 521-581. Curio sails for Africa, and landing 
at the river Bagrada, near Utica, is informed by one of the inhabitants of 
the contest which took place near there between Hercules and the giant 
Antaeus, 581-660. Varus, the Pompeian commander, is routed by Curio, 
661-714. Curio fights against Juba, but being surrounded by an am- 
buscade, is destroyed with his forces, 715-798. He is apostrophized by 
the Poet, 799-824. 

BUT afar in the remotest regions of the world stern Caesar 
wages a warfare, not injurious with much slaughter 1 , but 
destined to give the greatest impulse to the fate of the 
chieftains. With equal rights, Afranius 2 and Petreius* 

1 Not injurious with much slaughter) ver. 2. In consequence, as is seen 
in the sequel, of his having intercepted the supply of water of the enemy. 

2 Afranius) ver. 4. L. Afranius was a person of obscure origin, and was 
throughout the Civil War a warm friend and partisan of Pompey, under whom 
he had served against Sertorius in Spain and in the Mithridatic war. 
He was afterwards Consul, and obtained a triumph in B.C. 59, probably for 
some advantage gained over the Gauls. He was present at the battle of 
Pharsalia, where he had charge of the camp. He fled to Africa and was 
taken prisoner and put to death shortly after the battle of Thapsus. He 
now had the command of Hither Hispania, which, with three legions, had 
been given to him by Pompey. 

* And Petreiut) ver. 5. M. Petreius first served under Antony against 



B. iv. 4-21.] PHAESALIA. 127 

were rulers in that camp ; an agreement divided the com- 
mon command into equal shares ; and the ever-watchful 
guard, protector of the trenches, oheyed alternate standards. 
With these, besides the Latian bands, there was the active 
Asturian 1 and the light-armed Vettones 2 , and the Celts 3 , 
who migrated from the ancient race of the Gauls, mingling 
their name with the Iberians. 

The rich soil swells with a slight elevation, and with a 
hill of gentle slope increases on high ; upon this rises 
Ilerda 4 , founded by ancient hands; the Sicoris, not the 
last among the Hesperian rivers, flows by with its placid 
waves, which a stone bridge spans with its large arch, des- 
tined to endure the wintry waters'. But an adjoining rock 
bears the standard of Magnus ; nor on a smaller hill does 
Caesar rear his camp ; a river hi the middle divides the tents. 
The earth, expanding from here, unfolds extended fields, 
the eye scarcely catching the limits ; and thou dost bound 
the plains, impetuous Cinga 6 , being forbidden to repel the 

Catiline. He was a person of considerable military experience, and a 
staunch partisan of Pompey. He was one of the legates of Pompey in 
Spain, and after his defeat by Csesar, joined him in Greece. After the 
battle of Pharsalia he fled to Achaia and thence to Africa, where, after the 
fatal issue of the battle of Thapsus, he and king Juba fell by each other's 
hand, to avoid falling into the power of the enemy. 

1 The active Asturian) ver. 8. " Astur," though used in the singular, 
means the Asturians, or natives of the region now called " the Asturias," 
in Spain. 

2 The light-armed Vettones) ver. 9. The Vettones, or Vectones, were a 
people of Lusitania (now Portugal), separated from Asturia by the river 
Durius, now the Douro. 

* And the Celts) ver. 10. He means the Celtiberians, who were descended 
from the Celts who had originally crossed the Pyrenees, and, becoming 
mixed with the Iberians, the original inhabitants of the country, occupied 
the country now called Arragon. With reference to these levies of Pompey, 
Caesar says, in his Civil War, B. i. c. 39, " Afranius had three legions, Pe- 
treius two. There were besides about eighty cohorts raised in Hispania 
(of which the troops belonging to Hither Hispania had shields, those be- 
longing to Further Hispania leather targets), and about live thousand 
horse, raised in both provinces." 

4 Upon this rises Ilerda) ver. 13. Ilerda, now called Lerida, was a town 
of the Itergetes, in Hispania Tarraconensis, situate on an eminence over the 
river Sicoris (now the Segre), which was crossed here by a bridge of stone. 

* To endure the icintry waters) ver. 16. Sufficiently strong and high to 
admit of the passage of the mountain floods of winter. 

6 Impetuous Cinga) ver. 21. Now called the Cinca, which, with the 



128 PHAESALIA. [B. iv. 21-32. 

waves and the shores of ocean in thy course ; for, the streams 
being mingled, the Iberus, that gives it to the region, takes 
away thy name from thee. 

The first day of the warfare refrained from blood-stained 
battle, and drew out both the strength of the chieftains 
and the numerous standards to be reviewed. They were 
ashamed of their wickedness ; fear restrained the arms of 
them thw frenzied, and one day did they devote to country 
and the broken laws. Then, the light of day declining 1 , 
Caesar by night surrounded his troops with a trench sud- 
denly formed, while the front ranks kept their post 2 , and 
he deceived the foe, and, his maniples being drawn up near 
each other in close ranks, enveloped the camp. 

At early dawn he commanded 11 them with a sudden move- 

Sicoris, falls into the river Iberus, or Ebro. The Cinga is supposed to have 
lain to the east of the hostile camps, and the Sicoris to the west. 

1 The light of day declining) ver. 28. "Prono Olympo," literally 
" Olympus felling ; " " Olympus " being here used to signify the light of 
the day. 

2 The front ranks kept their post) ver. 30. This passage is rendered 
more intelligible by a reference to the narrative of Caesar, in his Civil War, 
B. i. c. 41, 2 : " When Caesar perceived that Afranius declined coming to an 
engagement, he resolved to encamp at somewhat less than half a mile's dis- 
tance from the very foot of the mountain ; and that his soldiers, whilst en- 
gaged in their works, might not be terrified by any sudden attack of the 
enemy, or disturbed in their work, he ordered them not to fortify it with a 
wall, which must rise high and be seen at a distance, but to draw on the front 
opposite the enemy a trench fifteen feet broad. The first and second lines 
continued under arms, as was at first appointed. Behind them the third 
line was carrying on the work without being seen ; so that the whole was 
completed before Afranius discovered that the camp was being fortified. 
In the evening Caesar drew his legions within this trench, and rested them 
under arms the next night. The day following he kept his whole army 
within it, and as it was necessary to bring materials from a considerable 
distance, he for the present pursued the same plan in his work ; and to 
eacli legion, one after the other, he assigned one side of the camp to fortify, 
and ordered trenches of the same magnitude to be cut. He kept the rest 
of the legions under arms to oppose the enemy." 

3 At early dawn he commanded) ver. 32. This attack is thus described in 
the Civil War, B. i. c. 43 : " Between the town of Ilerda and the next 
hill, on which Afranius and Petreius were encamped, there was a plain 
about three hundred paces broad, and near the middle of it an eminence 
somewhat raised above the level. Caesar hoped that if he could gain pos- 
session of this and fortify it he should be able to cut off the enemy from 
the town, the bridge, and all the stores which they had kid up in the town. 
In expectation of this, he led three legions out of the camp, and drawing 



B. iv. 32-55.] PHAESALIA. 129 

ment to ascend a hill, which in the middle separated Ilerda 
in safety from the camp. Hither did hoth shame and terror 
drive the foe, and, his troops hurried on, he first took pos- 
session of the hill ; to these valour and the sword promised 
the spot, but to those possession of the place itself. The 
loaded soldiers struggled up the steep rocks ; and with faces 
upturned the ranks clung to the opposing mountain, and, 
likely to fall upon their backs, were elevated by the shields 
of those that followed. There was opportunity for no one to 
poise his dart, while he was tottering and strengthening 
his footsteps with his javelin fixed in the ground, while they 
were clinging to crags and stumps of trees, and, the enemy 
neglected, cut their way with the sword. 

The chieftain beheld the troops likely to fail with disaster, 
and ordered the cavalry to take part in the warfare, and by a 
circuit to the left 1 to place before them its protected side. 
Thus was the foot, readily, and with no one pressing upon 
it, relieved, and the disappointed conqueror, the battle 
being cut short, stood aloft. 

Thus far were the vicissitudes of arms ; the rest of its 
fortunes did the weather give to the warfare, uncertain with 
its varying fluctuations. The winter, clogged with the slug- 
gish ice, and the dry north winds, kept the showers in the 
clouds, the sky being frozen up. Snows pinched the moun- 
tain districts, and hoar-frosts destined not to last on 
seeing the sun ; and the whole earth nearer to the sky that 
sinks the Constellations was parched, hardened beneath the 
winter's clear sky. 

up his army in an advantageous position, he ordered the advanced men of 
one legion to hasten forward and take possession of the eminence. Upon 
intelligence of this, the cohorts which were on guard before the camp of 
Afranius were instantly sent a nearer way to occupy the same post. The 
two parties engaged, and as the men of Afranius had reached the eminence 
first, our men were repulsed, and on a reinforcement being sent, they were 
obliged to turn their backs, and retreat to the standards of the legions." 

1 By a circuit to the left) ver. 41. Lucan seems here to confound the 
attempt to take the rising ground with an attack on the town made by his 
ninth legion, and described by Caesar in the Civil War, B. i. c. 45, 6. " The 
aid given by the cavalry is thus described in the latter Chapter : " Our 
cavalry also, on either flank, though stationed on sloping or low ground, 
yet bravely struggled up to the top of the hill, and riding between the 
two armies, made our retreat more easy and secure." 

K 



130 PHARSALIA. [u. iv. 56-76. 

But after the vernal carrier of Helle 1 who fell off, that 
looks back upon the Constellations, brought back the warm 
Titan, and once again, the hours having been made equal 
according to the weights of the true Balance, the days 
exceeded in duration'-; then, the sun left behind, at the 
time when Cynthia first shone dubious with her honr 3 , she 
excluded Boreas, and received flames from Eurus 4 . He, 
whatever clouds he finds in his own region, hurls on 
towards the western world with Nabathrean blasts '; both 
those which the Arabian feels, and the mists which the Gan- 
getic land exhales, and whatever the orient sun allows to 
collect, whatever Corus, the darkener of the eastern sky, 
has carried along, Avhatever has defended the Indians from 
the heat ; the clouds removed afar from the east rendered 
tempestuous the day ; nor could they with their heaviness 
burst upon the mid region of the world, but hurried along 
the showers in their flight. 

Arctus and Notus are free from rams; towards Calpe 
alone floats the humid air. Here, where now the lofty sky 
of heaven 6 meets with the limits of Zephyrus and the 
ocean, forbidden to pass beyond they roll in their dense 
masses, and hardly does the space that separates the earth 
from the heavens contain the mass of darkened air. And now, 
pressed by the sky, they are thickened into dense showers, 

1 The vernal carrier of Helle) ver. 57. Aries, the Ram, who carried 
Helle and Phryxus on his back over the Hellespont, when the former fell 
off, and gave her name to that sea. He alludes to the entrance of the sun 
into Aries in the Spring. 

* The days exceeded in duration) ver. 59. When the days became 
longer than the nights after the vernal Equinox. 

3 Shone dubious with her horn) ver. 60. Because her horns are then but 
indistinctly seen. 

4 Received flames from Eurus) ver. 61. Virgil, in the First Book of 
the Georgics, remarks that the approach of wind causes the moon to be 
red ; " vento semper rubet aurea Phoebe." 

* With Nabathcean blasts) ver. 63. The Nabataei, or Nabathse, were a 
people situate in the north-western parts of the Arabian peninsula, and were 
said to be descended from Nabath, the eldest son of Ishmael. They after- 
wards extended into the original territory of the Edomites, or ancient Idumea. 
The term " Nabataeis" here probably signifies "Eastern" generally. 

* The lofty sky of heaven) ver. 73. " Summus cardo " here seems to 
mean the horizon. Lucan uses the word " cardo " very indefinitely and 
apparently with numerous significations. 



B. iv. 77-105.] PHARSALIA. 131 

and, united together, they flow downward ; nor do the light- 
nings preserve their flames, although they flash incessantly ; 
the bolts are quenched hy the rains. On this side, with 
arch incomplete, the rainbow with its curve spans the air, 
varying in colour with hardly any light, and drinks of the 
ocean 1 , and carries the waves, borne away, ur to the clouds, 
and restores to the heavens the ocean spread beneath. 

And now, the Pyreneaii snows 2 , which Titan never was 
able to melt, flow down, and the roeks are wet with broken 
ice. Then, the waters which spring forth from wonted 
channels have no passage, such an extended stream does 
all the bed of the river receive away beyond the banks. Now 
the shipwrecked arms of Cfesar are floating in the plain, 
and, carried along with a vast torrent, the camp is swept 
away; in the deep trench rivers overflow. No capture of 
cattle is easy, no fodder do the furrows under water bear ; 
through mistake of the covered ways, the foragers, scat- 
tered abroad, are deceived amid the fields hidden from 
their sight. 

And now, ever the first attendant on great calamities, 
ravening famine comes, and, besieged by no enemy, the 
soldier is in want. For a whole fortune' 1 , one, not a prodigal, 
buys a little corn. O the pallid thirst for gain ! The gold 
proffered, a starving seller is not found wanting. Now hills 
and elevations lie concealed ; now one continued marsh hides 
all the rivers, and sinks them in its vast gulf ; entirely it 
absorbs the rocks, and bears away the shelters of wild 
beasts, and carries off themselves ; and, stronger than they, 
it whirls hi sudden vortices the roaring waters and repulses 
the tides of ocean. Nor is the night, spread over the 
sky, sensible that Phcebus rises ; the disfigured face of 

1 And drinks of the ocean) ver. 81. Virgil and Plautus also allude to 
the popular belief that the rainbow drinks of the waters of the ocean. 

3 The Pyrenean snows) ver. 83. The Pyrenees, which divide France 
from Spain, were called " Pyrene," or " Pyrensei Monies." They are called 
by both names by Lucan. 

a For a whole fortune) ver. 95. Livy, in his 28th Book, mentions an ex- 
traordinary instance of this species of avarice. He says that during the 
siege of Praeneste, a soldier who was dying with hunger sold a mouse, 
which he had caught, for 200 Roman denarii, but that he did not long sur- 
vive the bargain. 

K 3 



132 PHARSALIA. [B. nr. 105-120. 

heaven and the united shades mingle the varying traces of 
objects. 

Thus lies the remotest part of the world, which tfie 
snowy zone and perpetual winters oppress ; in the heavens 
no stars does it behold, not anything does it produce with 
its barren cold . but with ice it moderates the fires of the Con- 
stellations 1 in the middle of the system. Thus, O supreme 
Parent of the world, thus, Neptune, ruler in the second 
rank 2 of the ocean trident, mayst thou do, and mayst thou 
render dense the air with perpetual showers ; do thou, 
Neptune, forbid to return, whatever streams thou hast sent 
forth. Let not the rivers find a downward course to the 
sea-shore, but be beaten back by the waters of the main ; 
and let the shaken earth crumble into channels for the 
streams. These plains let the Rhine inundate, these the 
Rhone ; hither let the rivers direct their vast resources. 
Hither send the Rhipsean snows to thaw ; hither pour forth 
the pools and lakes, and, wherever they extend, the sluggish 
marshes, and rescue from civil wars 3 the wretched lauds. 



1 The fires of the Constellations) ver. 109. By "ignes medios signorum," 
he means the supposed heat of the Constellations in the torrid zone, and 
that the northern regions counteract it, so as to render the countries habit- 
able which lie beneath them. 

2 In the second rani) ver. 110. " Sorte secunda," "in the second rank." 
Neptune, as the king of the ocean, ranked next to his brother Jupiter, the 
king of the heavens. 

a Rescue from civil tears) ver. 120. Caesar, in the Civil War, B. i. 
c. 48, thus describes this tempest and its effects : " In two days after 
this transaction, there happened an unexpected misfortune. For so great 
a storm arose, that it was agreed that there were never eeen higher floods 
in those countries. It swept down the snow from all the mountains, and 
broke over the banks of the river, and in one day carried away both the 
bridges which Fabius had built a circumstance which caused great dif- 
ficulties to Caesar's army; for as one camp was pitched between two rivers, 
the Sicoris and the Cinga, and as neither of these could be forded for the 
space of thirty miles, they were all of necessity confined within these nar- 
row limits. Neither could the states which had espoused Caesar's cause 
furnish him with corn, nor the troops which had gone far to forage return, 
aa they were stopped by the floods ; nor could the convoys coming from 
Italy and Gaul make their way to the camp. The states, too, were ex- 
hausted, because Afranius had conveyed almost all the corn, before Caesar's 
arrival, into Ilerda, and whatever he had left had been already consumed by 
Caesar. The cattle which might have served as a secondary resource against 



B. iv. 121-136.] PHARSALIA. 133 

But the Fortune of the hero, contented with this slight 
alarm, returns in full career, and more than usual do the 
propitious Deities favour him and merit his forgiveness. 
Now the air is more serene, and Phoebus, equal to the waters, 
has scattered the dense clouds into fleecy forms, and the 
nights are reddening with the approaching light ; and, the 
due order of things observed, moisture departs from the 
stars', and whatever of the water is poised aloft seeks 
the lower regions. 

The woods begin to raise their foliage, the hills to 
emerge from the standing waters, and the valleys to become 
hard, the light of day beheld. And when the Sicoris re- 
gains its banks and leaves the plains, in the first place < the 
white willow, its twigs steeped in water, is woven into 
small boats, and covered over, the bullock being slaugh- 
tered, adapted for passengers it floats along the swelling 
stream. Thus does the Venetian on the flowing Padus, 
and on the expanded ocean the Briton sail 2 ; thus, when 
the Nile covers everything, is the Memphitic boat framed 
of the swampy papyrus '. 

want, had been removed by the states to a great distance on account of the 
war." 

1 Moisture departs from, the stars) ver. 126. He means that the 
moisture now departed, which before, filling the clouds, had obscured the 
light of the stars. 

2 The Briton sail) ver. 134. These were like the coracles, or light 
boats, which Caesar had seen used by the people of Britain. In the Civil 
War, B. i. c. 54, he thus describes these operations : " When Caesar's 
affairs were in this unfavourable position, and all the passes were guarded 
by the soldiers and horse of Afranius, and the hedges could not be re- 
paired, Caesar ordered the soldiers to make ships of the kind that his know- 
ledge of Britain a few years before had taught him. First, the keels and 
ribs were made of light timber, then the rest of the hull of the ships was 
wrought with wicker-work, and covered over with hides. When these were 
finished, he drew them down to the river in waggons in one night, a dis- 
tance of twenty-two miles from his camp, and transported in them some sol- 
diers across the river, and on a sudden took possession of a hill adjoining 
the bank. This he immediately fortified, before he was perceived by the 
enemy. To this he afterwards transported a legion ; and having bejrun a 
bridge on both sides, he finished it in two days. By this means he brought 
safe to his camp the convoys and those who had gone out to forage, and 
began to prepare a conveyance for the provisions." 

3 Of the swampy papyrus) ver. 136. Sulpitius, the Scholiast, says, that 
he calls the papyrus " bibula," from its growing in the sand, which sucks 
up the water. 



134 THARSALIA. [a iv. 137-156. 

Thrown across on these vessels the army hastens on 
either side to curve the cut-down wood l ; and dreading the 
swelling of the threatening river, it does not place the wooden 
foundations on the edges of the banks, but extends the 
bridge into the midst of the fields. And lest the Sicoris 
may dare anything with its waters rising once again, it is 
drawn away into channels, and, the stream being divided by 
canals, it pays the penalty for the more swollen waters. 
When Petreius sees that all tilings proceed with fortune to 
Caesar, he abandons the lofty Ilerda, and, distrusting the 
might of the knoAvn world, seeks nations unsubdued -, and 
always fierce in arms by courting death, and he directs his 
course to the limits of the world. 

Csesar, beholding the hills forsaken and the camp aban- 
doned, bids them take up arms, and not look for bridge 
or fords :1 , but surmount the stream with, hardy arms. 
Obedience is given, and the soldier, rushing to the battle, 
eagerly hastens on a path which in flight he would have 
dreaded. Afterwards, their arms regained, they warm their 
soaking limbs, and, by running, reinvigorate their joints 
chilled by the stream, until the shadows decrease, the day 
speeding onwards to the noon. And now the cavalry over 
takes the hindmost ranks, and, undecided for flight and 
for fight, they are detained. 

1 To curve the cut-down wood) ver 137. " Snccisura ciirvare nemus ; " 
an elliptical method of expressing " to cut down wood and bend it into 
arches for a bridge." 

3 Seeks nations unsubdued) ver. 146. The object of Petreius and 
Afranius, we learn from Caesar, was to repair to Celtiberia. 

3 Not look for bridge or fords) ver. 149. Because the route by the 
bridge, aa Caesar informs us, required too large a circuit. His cavalry 
bwnm across the river. He says, that " The foot being left behind, and 
seeing that the cavalry had overtaken the enemy (Civil War, B. i. c. 54) 
through the whole camp, the soldiers gathered in parties and declared their 
regret that the enemy had been suffered to escape from their hands. They 
applied to their tribunes and centurions, and entreated them to inform 
Caesar that he need not be sparing of their labour : that they were ready 
and able, and would venture to ford the river where the horse had crossed. 
On this, Caesar ordered all the weaker soldiers to be selected from each cen- 
tury, and left them with one legion besides to guard the camp. The rest 
of the legions he drew out without any baggage, and having disposed a 
great number of horse in the river, above and below the ford, he led his 
army over. A few of his soldiers being carried away by the force of the 
current were stopped by the horse and taken up,, and not a man perished." 



B. IT. 157-176.] PHARSALIA. 135 

Two rocks raise 1 their craggy ridges from the plain, a 
hollow vale being in the midst. On the one side the ele- 
vated earth forms a chain of lofty hills, between which 
with darkened route safe paths lie concealed. These 
straits an enemy gaining possession of, Ca3sar perceives 
that the warfare may be carried thence into the remote 
regions of the earth and into savage nations. " Go," says 
he, " without keeping your ranks 2 , and in your speedy course 
turn back your hastening force, and present your faces and 
your threatening countenances to the battle ; and let not 
the cowards fall by an ignoble death ; as they fly let them 
receive the weapon straight hi the breast." 

He spoke, and he came in front of the foe speeding on- 
ward to the mountains. There they pitched their camps a 
little distant from each other, with a narrow trench between. 
After their eyes, straining by reason of no distance, had 
mutually caught sight * of each other's countenances in 
full view, and they beheld their own brothers, and children, 
and fathers, the wickedness of civil warfare was revealed. 

For a little tune they held their peace through fear ; 
only with signs and the waving of the sword did they 
salute their friends. Soon, when, with more powerful 
impulses, ardent affection overpowered the rules of war, 
the soldiers ventured to pass the trench, and to stretch 

1 Two rocls raise) ver. 157. Caesar finds that there is a passage through 
these defiles to remote regions and barbarous nations. It appears from his 
account that from his scouts he learnt " that there was a level road for the 
next five miles, and that there then succeeded a rough and mountainous 
country ; and that whichever should first obtain possession of the defiles 
would have no trouble in preventing the other's progress." 

2 Without keeping your ranks) ver. 162. The meaning is, that Caesar in- 
structed his men to make all haste, leaving their ranks, to go by a circuitous 
path, and reaching the pass before the enemy, there to face about and charge 
him. Caesar says, in the Civil War, B. i. c. 69, that, when his troops began 
to do this, " At first the soldiers of Afranius ran in high spirits from 
their camp to look at us, and in contumelious language upbraided us, that we 
were forced for want of necessary subsistence to run away, and return to 
Ilerda. For our route was different from what we purposed, and we seemed 
to be going a contrary way." 

3 Had mutually caught sight) ver. 170. He means, that when they had 
encamped they were so close that they could easily recognize the counte- 
nances of each other. 



136 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 176-194 

the extended hands' for an embrace. One calls out the 
name of his host ; another shouts to a neighbour ; a youth 
spent together reminds another of their boyish pursuits ; 
nor is there a Roman that does not recognize an enemy 
as an acquaintance. The arms are wet with tears, with 
sighs they interrupt their kisses ; and, although stained 
with no blood, the soldier dreads to have done what he 
might have done. 

Why dost thou beat thy breast? Why, madman, dost 
thou groan ? Why dost thou pour forth empty laments, and 
not own that of thine own accord thou hast been obedient 
to criminality? Dost thou so greatly dread him, whom thou 
thyself dost make to be dreaded ? Let the trumpet-call 
sound to battle, do thou neglect the ruthless signal ; 
let them bear on the standards, stay behind ; soon will the 
civic strife come to an end, and Csesar, a private person, 
will love his son-in-law. Now, Concord, do thou approach, 
encircling all things in thine everlasting embrace, O thou 
salvation of things and of the harmonizing world, and hal 
lowed love of the universe ! now does our age hold a vast in 
fluence on what is to come. The skulking places of crimes 
so many have come to an end ; pardon is torn away from 
an erring people ; they have recognized their own friends. 

1 To stretch the extended hands) ver. 176. These circumstances are 
thus related in the Civil War, B. i. c. 283 : " The soldiers having ob- 
tained a free opportunity of conversing with each other, came out in great 
numbers, and enquired each for whatever acquaintance or fellow-citizen he 
had in our camp, and invited him to him. First they returned them ge- 
neral thanks for sparing them the day before, and acknowledged that they 
were alive through their kindness. Then they enquired about the honor 
of our general, and whether they could with safety entrust themselves 
to him ; and declared their sorrow that they had not done so in the 
beginning, and that they had taken up arms against their relations and 
kinsmen. Encouraged by these conferences, they desired the general's pa- 
role for the lives of Petreius and Afranius, that they might not appear 
guilty of a crime in having betrayed their generals. When they were 
assured of obtaining their demands, they promised that they would imme- 
diately remove their standards, and sent centurions of the first rank as 
deputies to treat with Caesar about a peace. In the meantime some of them 
invite their acquaintances, and bring them to their camp, others are brought 
away by their friends, so that the two camps seemed to be united into one, 
and several of the tribunes and centurions came to Caesar, and paid their 
respects to him." 



B. iv. 194-215.] PHARSALIA. 137 

O Fates, the Deity thus unpropitious, that by reason of a 
little respite increase calamities so great ! 

There was a truce, and the soldiers, mingled in either 
camp, wandered at large ; in friendship on the hard turf they 
prepared the banquets; and with the mingled wine the 
libations flowed 1 on the grassy hearths, and, their couches 
united, the tale of the wars prolonged the sleepless night : 
on what plain they first came to a stand, from what right 
hand sped the lance. While they are boasting of the valiant 
things which they have done, and while they are disagreeing 
on many a point, what alone the Fates are seeking, confi- 
dence is renewed in them, wretched beings, and all the future 
criminality waxes the stronger by reason of their affection. 

For after the treaty for a truce 2 is known to Petreius, 
and he sees himself and his own camp being betrayed, he 
arouses the right hands of his household troops to the 
accursed warfare, and, surrounded with a multitude, head- 
long drives the unarmed enemy from the camp, and 
separates them, joined in embraces, with the sword, and 
with plenteous bloodshed 3 disturbs the peace. Fierce 
anger adds words to provoke the battle : 

" O soldiers, unmindful of your country, forgetful of your 
standards, if you cannot bestow this on the cause of the 
Senate, to return, its champions, Csesar being overcome ; 
at least you can, to be overcome 4 . While there is 

1 The libations floiced) ver. 198. Libations of wine in honour of Bac- 
chus were poured forth on the hearths that were temporarily made on the 
grass. 

2 The treaty for a truce) ver. 205. In allusion to the overtures made by 
his troops to Caesar. See the Note to 1. 176. 

3 With plenteous bloodshed) ver. 209. Caesar, in the Civil War, B. i. 
c. 75, 76, mentions the conduct of Petreius in the following terms : " Pe- 
treius did not neglect himself; he armed his domestics ; with them and the 
Prcetorian cohort of Spaniards and a few foreign horse, his dependents, 
whom he commonly kept near him to guard his person, he suddenly flew on 
the rampart, interrupted the conferences of the soldiers, drove our men from 
the camp, and put to death as many as he caught. Orders were given that 
whoever had any of Cwsar's soldiers should produce them ; as soon as they 
were produced, they put them to death publicly in the Praetorium ; but most 
of them concealed those whom they had entertained, and let them out at night 
over the rampart." 

* You can, to le overcome) ver. 214. He means, that if they cannot 
be the champions of the Senate by the conquest of Caesar, still they may 
fight, and though conquered, thus prove their fidelity. 



138 THARSALIA. [u. ly, 215-245. 

the sword, and the Fates are yet uncertain, and blood 
shall not be wanting to flow from many a wound, will you 
be going over to a tyrant, and will you raise standards con- 
demned for treason? And will Caesar have to be entreated 
that he will make no distinction between his slaves ? Is 
life also to be begged for l for your generals ? Never shall 
my safety be the price and the reward of abominable trea- 
son ; civil wars tend not to this, that we should live on. 

" Under the name of peace we are betrayed. Nations 
would not be digging iron out of the mine that retreats 
far within the earth, no walls would be fortifying cities, no 
spirited steed would be going to the wars, no fleet upon 
the ocean to spread its tower-bearing ships upon the deep, 
if liberty were ever righteously bartered hi return for peace. 
Oaths sworn in accursed criminality 2 are to bind my 
enemies, forsooth! but by you is your fidelity less es- 
teemed, because it is allowed you fighting for a just cause 
to hope for pardon as well. O shocking compact of dis- 
grace ! Now, Magnus, ignorant of thy lot throughout the 
whole world thou art levying annies, and art arousing the 
monarchs who possess the extremities of the world, when 
perhaps by our treaty safety is already basely promised thee." 

Thus he spoke, and he aroused all their feelings, and 
brought back the fondness for criminality. Thus, when, 
unused to the woods, wild beasts have grown tame in an 
inclosed prison, and have laid aside their threatening 
countenances, and have learned to submit to man ; if a 
little blood comes to their burning mouths, their rage and 
fury return, and, reminded by the tasted gore, their jaws 
swell ; their anger waxes hot, and hardly does it with- 
hold from the trembling keeper. They rush on to all 
wickedness, and broken faith commits excesses, which, 
amid the dark night of battle, Fortune, to the dis 
grace of the Deities, might have been guilty of; amid the 

1 /* life also to le begged for) ver.*219. In allusion to the terms which 
they had proposed to Caesar for the safety of their generals, he reproaches 
them with the readiness with which they were about to make themselves 
and their generals indiscriminate!}' his slaves. 

* Sworn in accursed criminality) ver. 228. In allusion to the promise 
of safety for their generals which Caesar had given, contrary to his own 
withes. 



B. TV. 245-266.] PHAESALIA. 139 

tables 1 and the couches 2 , they stab the breasts which just 
before they have enfolded in their embraces. And, although 
at first lamenting they unsheathe their weapons, when the 
sword, the dissuader from right, adheres to the right hand, 
soon as they strike, they hate their own friends and 
strengthen their wavering spirits with the blow. Now the 
camp waxes hot with the tumult, and with the riot of crimi- 
nality ; the necks of parents are wrenched. And as though 
hidden criminality might be valueless, they expose all their 
monstrous deeds before the faces of their chieftains ; they 
take delight in being guilty. 

Thou, Csesar, although despoiled of many a soldier, 
dost recognize 3 the Gods of heaven as favouring tliee. Nor 
indeed in the Emathian plains 4 was thy fortune greater, 
nor in the waves of Phocsean Massilia ; nor were exploits 
so great performed in the Pharian seas ; since through 
this crime alone in the civil warfare thou shalt be the leader 
of the better cause. Polluted by an accursed slaughter, the 
generals dare not entrust then* troops to an adjoining 
camp, and again they take flight towards the walls of lofty 
Ilerda. The cavalry, meeting them, cuts off all the plain, 
and encloses the enemy on the parched hills. Then Csesar 
strives to surround them 3 destitute of water with a deep 
entrenchment, and not to permit the camp to reach the 
banks of the river, or the outworks to wind around plenteous 
springs. 

1 Amid the tables) ver. 245. This is contrary to the account of the 
conduct of the soldiers given by Caesar himself. See the Note to 1. 209. 

4 And the couches) ver. 245. The "tori" are the couches on which they 
reclined while taking the repast. 

3 Dost recognize) ver. 255. It is a matter of doubt with the Commen- 
tators what is the true meaning of " agnoscis " here. Some think that it 
means that Caesar recognizes the Gods as propitious to him in this transac- 
tion ; while others, perhaps with some reason, consider it to mean that 
Caesar shows reverence for the Gods, in not violating the rites of hospitality 
and good faith by slaying the troops of Petreius which were in his camp. 

4 Nor indeed in the Emathian plains) ver. 255. He means to say that 
the cause of Caesar was not more profited by his successes at Pharsalia, 
Massilia, and in Egypt, than by the favour which he found with the Gods 
on this occasion. It may be observed that this is one of the very few occa- 
sions on which the Poet speaks favourably of Caesar. Indeed, as Rowe justly 
observes, the baseness and cruelty of Petreius were inexcusable. 

4 Ccesar strives to surround them) ver. 264. These events are related 
at length in the Civil "War, B. i. c. 80-84. 



140 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 267-298. 

When they beheld the road to death, their terror was 
tumed into headlong rage. The soldiers slew the 
horses, no useful aid to people blockaded ; and at length, 
hope faid aside, being compelled to condemn all flight, 
doomed to fall they are borne upon the foe. When Csesar 
saw them running down with extended front, and, devoted, 
making their way to certain death, he said : 

" Soldiers, now keep back your darts, and withhold your 
swords from them as they rush on ; with no blood shall the 
victory be gained for me ; he is not conquered at no cost, 
who with his throat exposed challenges the foe. See how 
life being hated by them, valueless to themselves, the youths 
rush on, now threatening to perish with loss to myself. They 
will feel no wounds, they will fall on the swords, and rejoice in 
shedding their blood. Let this zeal forsake their minds, let 
this mad fit subside. Let them be rid of their wish to die." 

Thus did he suffer them to be inflamed to no purpose 
as they threatened, and, the war forbidden, to wax faint, until, 
Phoebus having sunk, night substituted her lights. Then, 
when no opportunity was given of mingling in the fight, 
by degrees their fierce anger moderated, and their spirits 
cooled ; just as wounded breasts manifest the greatest courage 
while the pain and the wound is recent, and the warm blood 
gives an active impulse to the nerves, and the bones have 
not as yet cleaved to the skin ; if the victor stands con- 
scious of the sword being driven home, and withholds his 
hands, then a cold numbness fastens on the limbs and 
spirit, the strength being withdrawn, after the congealed 
blood has contracted the dried-up wounds. 

And now deprived of water, the earth first dug up, 
they seek hidden springs and concealed streams ; and not 
alone with mattocks and sturdy spades do they dig up the 
fields, but with their own swords : and a well upon the 
hollowed mountain is sunk as far as the surface of the 
watery plain. Not so deeply down, not daylight left 
so far behind, does the pale searcher * for the Asturian gold 

1 Does the pale searcher) ver. 298. Claudian also speaks of the gold- 
mines in the country of the Asturians in Spain. Lemaire thinks, appa- 
rently with good reason, that " pallidus " is to be read in a literal or phy- 
sical sense. Silius Italicus speaks of the avaricious Asturian as being "con- 
color," " of the same colour," as the gold which he seeks, B. i. 1. 231. 



B. iv. 298-331.] PHARSALIA. 141 

bury himself; still, neither do any rivers resound in their 
hidden course, nor any new streams gush forth, on the 
pumice-stone being struck ; nor do the sweating caverns 
distil with small drops, nor is the gravel disturbed, moved 
upwards by the little spring. Then, exhausted with much 
perspiration, the youths are drawn up above, \vearied with 
the hard incisions in the flinty rocks. And you, waters, 
in the search for you cause them to be the less able to 
endure l the parching atmosphere. Nor do they, wearied, 
refresh their bodies with feasting, and, loathing food, they 
make hunger their resource against thirst. If a softer soil 
betrays moisture, both hands squeeze the unctuous clods 
over their mouths. If turbid filth is lying unmoved upon 
the black mud, all the soldiers vying with each other fall 
down for the polluted draughts, and dying, quaff the waters, 
which, likely to live, they would have been unwilling : after 
the manner, too, of wild beasts, they dry the distended 
cattle, and, milk denied, the loathsome blood is sucked 
from the exhausted udder. Then they wring the grass 
and leaves, and strip off the branches dripping with dew, 
and if at all they can, they squeeze juices from the crude 
shoots or the tender sap. 

happy they, whom the barbarian enemy, flying, has 
slain amid the fields with poison mingled with the 
springs-! Though, Ceesar, thou shouldst openly pour 
into these streams poison, and the gore of wild beasts, 
and the pallid aconite that grows upon the Dicteean rocks, 
the Koman youth, not deceived, would drink. Their 
entrails are scorched by the flame, and their parched mouths 
are clammy, Tough with scaly tongues. Now do their 
/eins shrink up, and, refreshed with no moisture, their 
; ungs contract the alternating passages for the air ; and hard- 
drawn sighs hurt their ulcerated palates. Still, however, 
they open their mouths, and catch at the night air. They 
long for the showers, by whose onward force but just now 

1 The less able to endure) ver. 305. The more they vainly searched for 
water, the more thirsty they became. 

2 With poison mingled with the springs) ver. 320. Several opponents 
of the llomans are said to have poisoned the rivers and springs ; Pyrrhus, 
king of Epirus, Jugurtha, king of Mauritania, Mithridates, and Juba, are 
mentioned in history as having so done. 



142 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 331-351. 

all things were inundated, and their looks are fixed upon 
the dry clouds. And that the more the want of water may 
afflict them in their wretchedness, they are not encamped 
upon the scorching Meroe 1 beneath the sky of the Crab, 
where the naked Garamantes v plough ; but, the army, en 
trapped between the flowing Sicoris and the rapid Iberus, 
looks upon the adjacent streams. 

Now subdued, the generals yielded, and, arms being laid 
down, Afranius, the adviser to sue for peace, dragging after 
him his half-dead squadrons into the enemy's camp, stood 
suppliantly before the feet of the conqueror. His dignity is 
preserved as he entreats, not beaten down by calamities, and 
he performs between his former good fortune and his re- 
cent misfortunes all the parts of one conquered, but that 
one a general, and with a breast void of care he sues for 
pardon 3 : 

" If the Fates had laid me prostrate under a degenerate 
enemy, there was not wanting the bold right hand for 
hurrying on my oivn death ; but now the sole cause of my 
entreating for safety is, Csesar, that I deem thee worthy to 
grant life. By no zeal for party are we influenced ; nor have 
we taken up arms as foes to thy designs. Us in fact did 
the civil warfare find generals ; and to our former cause 
was fidelity preserved so long as it could be. The Fates we 

1 The scorching Meroe) ver. 333. Meroe was a spot in .^Ethiopia called 
an island by the ancients, though not really so. It was the chief emporium 
for trade between Egypt, ^Ethiopia, Arabia, and India. Of course, from its 
southerly situation, the heat there would be intense. 

4 The naked Garamantes) ver. 334. The Garamantes were the most 
southerly people known to the ancients in North Africa. Herodotus places 
them nineteen days' journey from ^Ethiopia and the shores of the Indian 
Ocean, fifteen days' journey from Ammonium, and thirty days' journey 
from Kgypt. 

3 He sues for pardon) ver. 343. The following is the speech of Afranins, 
on this occasion, given by Caesar in the Civil War, B. i. c. 84 : " That Caesar 
ought not to be displeased either with him or his soldiers, for wishing to 
preserve their fidelity to their general, Cneius Pompeius. That they had 
now sufficiently discharged their duty to him, and had suffered punishment 
enough, in having endured the want of every necessary; but now, pent up 
almost like wild beasts, they were prevented from procuring water, and from 
walking abroad, and were unable to bear either the bodily pain or the mental 
anguish, but confessed themselves conquered, and begged and entreated, if 
there was any room left for mercy, that they might not be necessitated to 
suffer the most severe penalties.'' 



B. TV. 351-378.] PHAESALIA. 143 

do not withstand ; the western nations we yield, the eastern 
ones we open unto thcc, and we permit thee to feel assured 
of the world left behind thy back. 

" Nor has blood, shed upon the plains, concluded the war 
for thee, nor sword and wearied troops. This alone forgive 
thy foes, that thou dost conquer. And no great things are 
asked. Grant repose to the wearied ; suffer us unarmed to 
pass the life which thou dost bestow ; consider that our 
troops are lying prostrate along the plains ; nor does it in- 
deed befit thee to mingle with fortunate arms those con- 
demned, and the captured to take part in thy triumphs ; 
this multitude has fulfilled its destiny. This do we ask, 
that thou wilt not compel us, conquered, to conquer along 
with thyself." 

He spoke; but C&sar, readily prevailed upon, and serene 
in countenance, was appeased, and remitted continuance in 
the warfare 1 and all punishment. As soon as ever the 
compact for the desired peace had pleased them, the 
soldiers ran down to the now unguarded rivers ; they 
fell down along the banks, and troubled the conceded 
streams. In many the long-continued draughts of water 
suddenly gulped not permitting the air to have a pas- 
sage along the empty veins, compresses and shuts in the 
breath ; nor even yet does the parching plague give way ; 
but the craving malady, their entrails now filled with the 
stream, demands water for itself. 

Afterwards strength returned to the nerves, and power to 
the men. O Luxury, prodigal of resources 2 , never content 
with moderate provision, and gluttony, craving for food 
sought for over land and sea, and thou, pride of a sump- 
tuous table, learn from this with how little we have the 
power to prolong life, and how much it is that nature de- 

1 Continiiance in the warfare) ver. 364. " Uswm belli " probably means 
"any further employment in the wnr," by being forced to serve on his side; 
so in the Civil War, B. i. c. 86 : " Caesar gave security that they should 
receive no damage, and that no person should be obliged, against his inclina- 
tion, to take the military oath under him.'' 

" Prodigal of resources) ver. 373. The Poet thus exclaims in a vein of 
Stoicism in which he sometimes indulges. See the Second Book, L 351, 



144 PHARSALIA. [B. TV. 378-395. 

mands. No wine, poured forth under a Consul gone out of 
memory 1 , refreshes them fainting; from no gold and 
porcelain 2 do they drink ; but from the pure water does 
life return. Enough for the people is the stream and 
bread. Ah, wretched they who engage in wars ! 

Then, leaving their arms to the victor, the soldiers, un- 
harmed with spoiled breast and free from cares, are dis- 
persed among their own cities. Oh! how much do they 
regret, on having obtained the granted peace, that they have 
ever with vibrated shoulders poised the weapon, and have 
endured thirst, and have in vain asked the Gods for pros- 
perous battles. To those, forsooth, who have experienced 
successful wai-fare, there still remain so many doubtful 
battles, so many toils throughout the world ; should waver- 
ing Fortune never make a slip in success, so often must 
victory be gained, blood be poured forth upon all lands, 
and through his fortunes so numerous Caesar be followed. 
Happy he, who was able then to know, the ruin of the 
world impending, in what place he was to lie :t . No battles 
summoned them forth in their weariness ; no trumpet-call 
broke their sound slumbers. 

1 A Consul gone out of memory) ver. 379. On the outside of the " am- 
phorae," or " cadi," the titles of the wine were painted, the date of the vintage 
being denoted by the names of the Consuls then in office ; and when the 
vessels were of glass, small tickets, called " pittacia," were suspended from 
them, stating to a similar effect. Ovid has a somewhat similar passage to 
the present, in his Art of Love, B. ii. 1. 88 : " For me, let the cask, 
stored up in the times of ancient Consuls, pour forth the wine of my an- 
cestors." 

2 And porcelain) ver. 380. The " murrhina," or " murrea vasa," 
" myrrhine vessels," were first introduced into Rome by Pompey. Their 
value was very great Nero is said to have given three hundred talents for 
a drinking cup of this description. Pliny says that these vessels came from 
the east, principally from places within the Parthian empire, and chiefly 
from Caramania. lie describes them as made of a substance formed by a 
moisture thickened in the earth by heat, and says that they were chiefly 
valued for their variety of colours. It has been suggested that they were 
made of a kind of glass, but it is, perhaps, more probable that they were 
made of Chinese porcelain. 

3 He was to lie) ver. 394. " Quo jaceat jam scire loco." There is some 
doubt about the exact meaning of " jaceat;" it may signify simply, " where 
in the ruin of the world he is to lie," without any stronger signification, or 
it may have the meaning of " where he is to die." 



B. iv. 396-415.] PHAESALIA. 145 

Now do the wives, and the innocent children, and the 
humble dwellings, and the land their own, receive no 
husbandmen draughted off 1 . This burden as well does 
Fortune remove from them at ease, that tormenting party 
spirit is removed from their minds. The one is the 
giver of their safety, the other was their leader. Thus do 
they alone, in happiness, look on upon the cruel warfare 
with no favouring wishes. 

Not the same fortune of war lasted throughout the 
whole earth ; but against the side of Caesar something did 
it dare, where the waves of the Adriatic sea beat against 
the extended Salonre 2 , and the warm Jader :i flows forth 
towards the gentle Zephyrs. There, trusting in the warlike 
race of the Curictans 4 , whom the land rears, flowed around 
by the Adriatic sea, Antony, taking up his position in that 
distant region, is shut up, safe from the onset 5 of war, 
if only famine, that besieges with certainty, would with- 
draw. The earth affords no forage for feeding the horses, 
the yellow-haired Ceres produces no crops of corn; the 
soldiers strip the plains of grass, and, the fields now 
shorn close, with their wretched teeth they tear the dry 
grass from off the turf of their encampment. As soon as 

1 No husbandmen draughted off) ver. 397. Happy in not having to await 
the conclusion of the war, in order to be planted (deduci) in the enemy's 
country as military colonists, inasmuch as, being disbanded, they immediately 
retired to their own homes. 

2 The extended Salonce) ver. 404. Salona, or Salonae, was an important city 
of Illyria, and the capital of Dalma,tia, situate on a small bay of the sea. It 
was the seat of a Roman colony. Here the Emperor Diocletian was born, 
and ended his days in retirement. 

3 The warm Jader) ver. 405. He alludes to a river so called near 
Salona ; there was also a town called Jader, or Jadera, on the Illyrian 
coast, with an excellent harbour. 

4 Race of the Curictans) ver. 406. Curicta was the name of an island in 
the Adriatic, off the coast of Illyria, where Dolabella commanded for Caesar, 
while Caius Antonius encamped on the island, and was besieged by Libo. 
He must not be confounded with his brother, Marc Antony, who at this 
time was at Brundisium, in command of Caesar's forces there. C. Antonius 
was Proconsul of Macedonia at the time of Caesar's death, and being de- 
feated by Brutus, was slain by him in revenge for the murder of Cicero by 
Marc Antony. 

5 Safe from the onset) ver. 409. "Cautus" has here the unusual meaning 
of " safe/' or " secure." 

L 



146 PHABSALIA. [B. iv. 415-433. 

they behold their friends l on the shore of the opposite 
mainland and Basilus their leader 2 , a new stratagem for 
flight across the sea is discovered. 

For, not according to wont do they extend the keels and 
build aloft the sterns, but with an unusual shape they 
fasten firm planks together for supporting a massive 
tower. For, on every side, empty caissons support the 
raft :t , a series of which, fastened together, with extended 
chains receives alder planks laid obliquely in double rows. 
Nor does it carry its oars exposed to the weapons in the 
open front ; but that sea which it has surrounded with the 
beams the oars strike, and it shows the miracle of a silent 
course, because it neither carries sails nor beats the dis- 
covered waves. Then the straits are watched, while the ebb- 
ing tide is retreating with lessening waves, and the sands 
are laid bare by the sea flowing out. And now, the waters 
retiring, the shores increase ; the raft, being launched, is 
borne gliding along on the receding tide, and its two com- 
panions. Upon them all a lofty tower is threatening above, 
and the decks are formidable with nodding pinnacles. 

Octavius, the guardian 4 of the Illyrian waves, was un- 

1 Behold iJieir friends) ver. 415. The "socii" here mentioned are Dola- 
bella, who was commanding for Caesar on the mainland, with his troops, and 
whom Basilus had joined with his fleet, while waiting to relieve Antonius. 

3 Basilus their leader) ver. 416. This was L. Minucius Basilus, whose 
original name was M. Satrius, before he assumed that of his uncle, by whom 
he was adopted. He served under Caesar in Gaul, and in the Civil War com- 
manded part of his fleet Like Brutus and others, though a personal friend 
of Caesar, he took part in his murder. He himself was slain by his own 
slaves about a year after. The fifteenth Epistle in the sixth book Ad Fami- 
liares, was written by Cicero to Basilus, congratulating him on the death 
of Caesar. 

3 Support the raft) ver. 420. The whole of this account is very confused, 
and Lemaire suggests that it is one description formed from a mixture of 
several. The floats or rafts seem to hare been of oblong form, and formed 
each of two tiers of caissons, or " cuppa? " (more literally " wine vats "), the 
apace between which tiers was not covered "ver, for the purpose of rowing, 
while the outer sides of the raft were protected by hurdles. Being thus 
rowed from within, their motion would naturally astonish the enemy when 
at a distance. Lucan speaks of the floats being made by the forces of Anto- 
nius, whereas Florus mentions them as being sent by Basilus to the relief of 
the troops on the island. 

4 Octavius, the guardian) rer. 433. This was M. Octavius, a friend of 



B. iv. 433-447.] PHARSALIA. 147 

willing immediately to assault the raft, and . withheld his 
swift ships, until his prey should be increased on a second 
passage ', and invited them, rashly going on hoard, to try 
the deep once more through the pacific appearance of the 
sea. Thus, while the hunter encloses the scared deer in 
the feather-foil 2 , as they dread the scent of the strong 
smelling feathers, or while he is lifting the nets on the 
forked sticks duly arranged, he holds the noisy mouth of 
the light Molossian hound :> , and restrains the Spartan and 
the Cretan dogs ; neither is the wood permitted to any dog, 
except the one which, with nose pressed to the ground, scents 
the footsteps, and, the prey found, knows how not to bark, 
contented by shaking the leash 4 to point out the lair. 

And no delay is there; the masses are filled again, and, the 
rafts greedily sought, the island is abandoned, at the time 
when at nightfall the waning light now opposes the first 

Cicero and Curule .ffidile B.C. 50. He espoused the cause of Pompey, and 
was appointed, with Q. Scribonius Libo, to the command of the Liburnian 
and Achaean fleets, serving as legate to M. Bibulus, the commander of 
Pompey's fleet. He and Libo defeated Dolabella on the Illyrian coast. 
After the battle of Pharsalia, he retreated first to Illyricum, and thence to 
Africa. The last time that he is mentioned in history is on the occasion of 
the battle of Actium, when, with M. Justeius, he commanded the middle of 
Antony's fleet. 

1 On a second passage) ver. 435. The meaning of this is obscure, but it 
seems to be that Octavius would not attack the floats till the first suc- 
cessful attempt had led them to return and fetch away more troops from the 
island. 

2 In the feather-foil) ver. 437. The " formido," or " feather-foil," was a 
toil or net used for catching deer, and covered with feathers of a red colour, 
for the purpose of scaring them away from breaking through the nets when 
inclosed. The " odorata penna " here mentioned is supposed by some to 
refer to the smell of the red dye in which the feathers were steeped; 
others, however, think that it refers to the smell of the feathers themselves, 
and cite the Cynsegeticon of Qratius Faliscus, where he says that the feathers 
of vultures were used for foils, the strong smell of them driving away the 
wild beasts. As the feathers seem to have been used for scaring the deer, 
both by the sight and the smell, the line may mean, " the deer fearing the 
strong-smelling feathers as they move about in the breeze," or, " fearing the 
scent of the strong-smelling feathers." 

3 The light Molossian hound) ver. 440. The dogs of Molossus, in Epinig, 
were famed for their courage in the chase, while those of Sparta and Crete 
were prized for their swiftness. 

* By shaking Uie leash) ver. 444. It appears from this passage, that when 
sent into dense thickets to find, the dogs were held by a long leash or cord, 
and, when successful, notice was given to the hunter by the shaking of it. 

L S 



148 PHAESALIA. [a iv. 447-468. 

shades of night. But the Cilicians of Pompey with their 
ancien-t skill l prepare to lay stratagems beneath the sea, 
and suffering the surface of the main to be free, suspend 
chains in the midst of the deep, and permit the connected 
links to hang loose, and fasten them to the rocks 2 of the 
Illyrian cliffs. Neither the first raft a nor the one that 
follows is retarded ; but the third mass sticks fast, and by 
a rope drawn 4 follows on to the rocks. The hollow cliffs 
hang over the sea, and, strange ! the mass stands, always 
about to fall, and with the woods overshadows the deep. 
Hither did the ocean often bear ships, wrecked by the 
north wind, and drowned bodies, and hide them in the 
darkened caverns. The sea enclosed restores the spoil; 
and when the caverns have vomited forth the water, the 
waves of the eddying whirlpool surpass in rage the Tau- 
romenian Charybdis*. 

Here one mass, laden with colonists of Opitergium , 
stopped short ; this the ships, unmoored from all their 
stations, surrounded ; others swarmed upon the rocks and 
the sea-shore. Vulteius perceived 7 the silent stratagems 
beneath the waves (he was the captain of the raft), 
who having in vain endeavoured to cut the chains with 
the sword, without any hope 8 demanded the fight, un- 
certain which way to turn his back, which way his breast, 

1 With their ancient skill) ver. 449. He alludes to the skill which, from 
of old, the Cilicians had possessed in naval matters in consequence of their 
former piratical mode of life. 

2 Fasten them to the rocks) ver. 452. One end of the chain or boom 
was fastened to the rocks on the shore, while the other was probably fastened 
down with anchors, thus extending nearly from the shore to the point of 
embarkation in the island. 

3 Neither the first raft) ver. 452. We learn from Floras that two were 
carried over by the high tide. 

4 By a rope drawn) ver. 454. Getting entangled by the chain or boom, 
the float appears to have been dragged by the enemy upon the rocks off the 
mainland, among which was the whirlpool here described. 

5 Tauromenian Charybdis) ver. 461. The whirlpool of Charybdis, in 
Sicily, was near the town of Taurornenus, or Tauromenium. 

* "Colonists of Opitergium) ver. 462. This was a Roman colony of 
Venetia, in the north of Italy. The present name is Oderzo. 

7 Vulteius perceived) ver. 465. "We learn from Florus that this brave 
man was a tribune of Caesar's army, but nothing more is known of him. 

8 Without any hope) ver. 467. Wishes to fight, though with no hope of 
being victorious. 



B. rr. 463-499.] PHARSALIA. 149 

to the warfare. Valour, however, in this calamity effected 
as much as, ensnared, it was able. The fight was be- 
tween so many thousands pouring in upon the captured 
raft and scarcely on the other side a complete cohort ; not 
long indeed, for black night concealed the dubious light, 
and darkness caused a truce. 

Then thus with magnanimous voice did Vulteius en- 
courage the cohort dismayed and dreading their approach- 
ing fate : " Youths, free no longer than one short night, 
consult in this limited time for your fortunes in this ex- 
tremity. A short life remains for no one who in it has 
time to seek death for himself; nor, youths, is the glory of 
death inferior, in running to meet approaching fate. 
The period of their life to come being uncertain to all, 
equal is the praise of courage, both in sacrificing the years 
which you have hoped for, and in cutting short the mo- 
ments of your closing existence, while by your own hand 
you hasten your fate. No one is compelled to wish to die. 
No way for flight is open ; our fellow-citizens stand on every 
side bent against our throats. Determine on death, and 
all fear is gone ; whatever is necessary, that same desire. 

" Still, we have not to fall amid the dark haze of warfare, 
or when armies envelope their own darts with the shades 
intermingling, when heaped up bodies are lying on the 
plain, and every death goes to the common account, and 
valour perishes overwhelmed. In a ship have the Gods 
placed us conspicuous to our allies and to the foe. The 
seas will find us witnesses, the land will find them, the 
island from the summit of its cliffs will present them ; the 
two sides from opposite shores 1 will be spectators. For- 
tune ! an example hi our deaths how great and memora- 
ble thou art contemplating I know not. Whatever me- 
morials in ages past fidelity has afforded and a soldier's duty 
preserved by the sword, the same our youths will transcend. 

1 From opposite shores) ver. 495. " Diverse a littore." This description 
is very confused, and it is difficult to say what were the localities of the 
different parties. It would seem that the island was probably at the 
mouth of a river, and that the mainland on one side of the river was occu- 
pied by Antonius and his troops, while the Pompeians had possession of the 
mainland on the other side, on which they now dragged the raft of 
Vulteius. 



160 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 500 527. 

" For, Csesnr, to fall upon our own swords for thee we 
deem to be but little ; but to us, hemmed in, no greater 
ones are existing, for us to give as pledges of affection so 
great. An envious lot has cut off much from our praises, 
in that we are not environed, captured together with our old 
men and children 1 . Let the enemy know that we are men 
unsubdued, and dread our courage, glowing and eager for 
death, and be glad that 2 no more rafts have stuck fast 
They will be trying to corrupt us with treaties and with a 
disgraced life. O would that, in order that our distin- 
guished death might gain the greater fame, they would prof- 
fer pardon, and bid us hope for safety; that they might 
not, when we pierce our vitals with the warm weapon, think 
that we are desperate. By great valour must we deserve, 
that Caesar, a few among so many thousands being lost, 
may call this a loss and a calamity. 

" Though the Fates should afford an egress and let us 
escape, I would not wish to avoid what is pressing on. 
I have parted with life, companions, and am wholly im- 
pelled by the longing for approaching death. It is a frenzy. 
To those alone is it granted to feel it whom now the 
approach of doom is influencing ; and the Gods conceal 
from those destined to live, in order that they may endure 
to live, that it is sweet to die." 

Thus did courage arouse all the spirits of the magnani- 
mous youths ; whereas, before the words of their leader, 
they all beheld with moistened eyes the stars of heaven, 
and were in dread at the turning of the Wain of the Bear, 
those same, when his precepts had influenced their brave 
minds, now longed for day. Nor was the sky then slow to 
sink the stars in the main ; for the sun was occupying the 
Ledrean Constellations 3 when his light is most elevated in 

1 With our old men and children) ver. 504. Probably in allusion to the 
Saguntines, who slew their aged people and children rather than allow them 
to fall into the possession of the enemy. 

* And be glad Utat) ver. 506. Because he must envy onr glory in dying 
thus valiantly. 

3 The Ledcean ConstellatioTis) ver. 526. He means the Constellation 
Gemini, supposed to have been formed by Castor and Pollux, the twin sons 
of Jupiter and Leda. The meaning of this circumlocution is, that the sun 
was passing from Gemini into Cancer, and that it was about the beginning 
of June. 



B. iv. 527-550.] PHAESALIA. 151 

the Crab. A short night was then urging the Thessalian 
arrows 1 . The rising day disclosed the Istrians- standing 
on the rocks, and the warlike Liburnians :J on the sea with 
the Grecian fleet. The fight suspended, they first tried to 
conquer by a treaty, it perchance life might become more de- 
sirable to those entrapped, through the very delay of death. 

Life now forsworn, the devoted youths stood resolved, 
and, secure in fight, their deaths assured to themselves by 
their own hands ; and in no one of them did the outcry of 
the enemy shake the minds of the heroes prepared for the 
worst; and at the same time, both by sea and land, few 
in number, they bore up against innumerable forces, so 
great was their confidence in death. And Avhen it seemed 
that in the warfare blood enough had flowed, their fury 
was turned from the enemy. First, Vulteius himself, the 
commander of the float, his throat bared, now demanding 
death, exclaims : 

" Is there any one of the youths whose right hand is 
worthy of my blood, and who, with certain assurance, can 
testify that with wounds from me he is ready to die ? " 
Having said no more, already has not one sword alone 
pierced his entrails. He commends all, but him to whom he 
owes the first wounds, dying, he slays with a grateful stroke. 
The others rush to meet each otlier, and the whole horrors 
of warfare on one side do they perpetrate. Thus did the 
Dircsean band spring up from the seed sown by Cadmus 4 , 

1 The Thessalian arrows) ver. 528. He alludes to the Constellation Sagit- 
tarius, or the Archer, which was supposed to be formed by Chiron, the Cen- 
taur, who dwelt in Thessaly. Being opposite to Gemini, it then rises at 
night. 

* Disclosed the Islrians) ver. 529. The Histri, or Istri, here mentioned, 
were the inhabitants of Histria, a peninsula at the northern extremity of the 
Adriatic. They were a warlike Illyrian race, and were the partisans of 
Pompey, as here seen. Their chief towns were Tergeste and Pola. 

3 The warlike Liburnians) ver. 530. The Liburni were the inhabitants 
of Liburnia, a district of Illyricum ; they were very skilful sailors, and, on 
this occasion, were adherents to the cause of Pompey. Their light-sailing 
vessels were the original models of the " Liburnicae " or " Liburnae naves " of 
the Romans. 

4 Seed sown by Cadmus) ver. 550. He alludes to the occasion when 
Cadmus slew the dragon near the fountain of Dirce, and sowed its teeth in 
the ground, from which soldiers sprang up who slew each other. See the 
Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. iii. 1. 100, ct seq. This was ominous of the 



152 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 550-576. 

and fall by the wounds of its own side, a dire presage to 
the Theban brothers ; the earth-born ones, too, sprung on 
the plains of Phasis ' from the wakeful teeth of the dragon, 
the anger being enflamed by magic charms, filled the fur- 
rows so vast with kindred blood ; and Medea herself shud- 
dered at the crime 2 which she had wrought with herbs 
before untried. 

Thus engaged to mutual destruction do the youths fall, 
and in the deaths of the heroes death has too great a 
share in the valour ; equally do they slay and fall with 
deadly wounds ; nor does his right hand deceive any one. 
Nor are the wounds owing to the swords driven home ; 
the blade is run against by the breast, and with their 
throats they press against the hand of him who gives the 
wound. When with a blood-stained fate brothers rush upon 
brothers, and the son upon the parent, still, with no trem- 
bling right hand, with all their might they drive home the 
swords. There is but one mark of duty in those who 
strike, not to repeat the blow. Now, half-dead, they drag 
their entrails, gushing out, to the hatches, and they pour 
into the sea plenteous blood. It gives them pleasure to be- 
hold the scorned light of day, and with proud looks to gaze 
upon their conquerors, and to feel the approach of death. 

Now is the raft beheld heaped up with the bloody 
slaughter, and the victors give the bodies to the funeral 
piles, the generals wondering :| that to any one his leader 
can be of value so great. Fame, spreading abroad over 
the whole world, has spoken with greater praises of no ship 
Still, after these precedents of the heroes, cowardly na- 
tions will not come to a sense how far from difficult it is 

deaths of Eteocles and Polynices, the brothers, descendants of Cadmus, by 
each other's hands. 

1 On the plains of Phasis) ver. 552. Jason also at Colchis, or " the 
plains of Phasis," slew the dragon that guarded the Golden Fleece, and, sowing 
its teeth in the ground, a race of men sprang up, on which, through the arts 
of Medea, they turned their weapons against each other. See Ovid's Meta- 
morphoses, B. vii. 1. 122, et teq. 

a Shuddered at the crime) ver. 556. The crime of fratricide which those 
sprung from the teeth were committing, after Jason had thrown the stone 
among them, as related by Ovid. 

3 The generals wondering) ver. 572. Octavius and Libo, the leaders of 
Pompey'a forces. 



B. iv. 577-592.] PHARSALIA. 153 

to escape slavery by ones own hand. But tyrants' rule is 
feared by reason of the sword, and liberty is galled by 
cruel arms, and is ignorant that swords were given that 
no one might be a slave. Death, I wish that thou wouldst 
refuse to withdraw the fearful from life, but that valour 
alone could bestow thee ! 

Not more inactive than this warfare was the one which at 
that time was raging in the Libyan fields. For the bold 
Curio unmoors his ships from the shore of Lilybseum l , 
and, no boisterous north wind being caught in his sails, 
makes for the shores between the half-buried towers of 
great Carthage and Clupea 2 with its well-known encamp- 
ment^ ; and his first camp he pitches at a distance from 
the surging sea, where the sluggish Bagrada 4 betakes it- 
self, the plougher-up of the parched sand. 

Thence he repairs to the hills and the rocks eaten away 
on every side, which antiquity, not without reason, names 
the realms of Antseus 5 . A rude countryman informed 
him, desiring to know the reasons for the ancient name, 
what was known to him through many ancestors. 

1 The shore of Lilylceum) ver. 583. Lilybseum was a town on the 
western coast of Sicily, on the site of the present Marsala, situate on a pro- 
montory of the same name, opposite to the coast of Africa. Caesar, in the 
Civil War, B. ii. 1. 23, thus mentions the departure of Curio for Africa : 
" About the snme time Caius Curio, having sailed from Sicily to Africa, and, 
from the first, despising the forces of Publius Attius Varus, transported only 
two of the four legions which he had received from Caesar, and five hundred 
horse, and having spent two days and three nights on the voyage, arrived at 
a place called Aquilaria, which is about twenty-two miles distant from 
Clupea, and, in the summer season, has a convenient harbour." 

2 And Clupea) ver. 586. Clupea, or Clypea, was originally called Aspis. 
It was a city on a promontory so called, in the north-east of the Carthagi- 
nian territory. It was founded by Agathocles, king of Sicily, and was 
taken in the first Punic war by the Romans, who called it Clypea, the 
translation of Aspis, meaning "a shield." Its present name is Klibiah. 

3 With its -well-known encampment) ver. 586. Probably from the circum- 
stance of Hercules having been said to have landed there, in his expedition 
against Antaeus. Cornelius Scipio, as mentioned by Lucan, had formerly en- 
camped in that neighbourhood, whence the spot was called " Castra Corne- 
liana." 

4 The sluggish Bagrada) ver. 588. This river, which is now called the 
" Mejerdah," falls into the sea near the ancient Utica. 

4 Realms of Ante-us) ver. 590. Strabo mentions this mountain chain as 
" the tomb of Antaeus," and describes it as extending many hundreds of 
miles, from Tingitana, in Mauritania, to the hills in the vicinity of Utica. 



154 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 593-616. 

" Earth, not as yet ban-en, after the Giants being born, 
conceived a dreadful offspring in the Libyan caves. Nor 
to the Earth was Typhon so just a ground of pride, or 
Tityus and the fierce Briareus ; and she spared the hea- 
vens, in that she did not bring forth Antseus in the Phle- 
grsean fields 1 . By this privilege as well did the Earth 
redouble the strength so vast of her offspring, in that, 
when they touched their parent, the limbs now exhausted 
were vigorous again with renewed strength. This cavern 
was his abode ; they report that under the lofty rock he 
lay concealed, and had caught lions for his food. For 
his sleep no skins of wild beasts were wont to afford a 
bed, no wood a couch, and lying on the bare earth he reco- 
vered his strength. The Libyans, tillers of the fields, pe- 
rish; they perish whom the sea has brought; and his 
strength, for a long time not using the aid of falling, 
slights the gift of the Earth ; unconquered was he in 
strength by all, although he kept standing. 

"'At length the report of the blood-stained pest was 
spread abroad, and invited to the Libyan shores the mag- 
nanimous Alcides, who was relieving the land and sea from 
monsters. He threw off the skin of the lion of Cleonse 2 , 
Antaeus that of a Libyan lion. The stranger besprinkled 
his limbs with oil, the custom of the Olympic exercises 3 
observed ; the other, not entirely trusting to touching his 
mother with his feet, sprinkled warm sand 4 as an aid to his 

1 The Phlegraan fields) ver. 597. The Phlegraean plains were said to be 
situate in Thessaly or Macedonia, and there the Earth gnve birth to Typhon, 
Tityus, and Briareus, who waged war against the Gods. The volcanic tract 
extending from Capua to Cumae in Campania was called by the same name, 
and the tradition was, that there, too, the Giants warred with the Gods. 

2 The lion of Cleonce) ver. 612. The Nemean lion, whose skin Hercules 
wore, is so called from the town of Cleonse, which was near the spot where 
it was slain. 

3 The Olympic exercises) ver. 614. At the Olympic games, and at the 
"palaestrae" in general, it was the custom of the wrestlers to anoint their 
bodies with " ceroma," a mixture of oil and wax. 

4 Sprinkled warm sand) ver. 616. This must have been necessarily laid 
upon the ceroma with which he anointed himself. Lucan says that it was 
done in order to have some portion of the earth, from which he derived his 
strength, always in contact with him ; but dust or fine sand was univer- 
sally used by wrestlers for sprinkling on their bodies after they had anointed 
themselves. 



B. iv. 616-647.] PHARSALIA. 155 

limbs. With many a twist they linked their hands and 
arms. For long, in vain were their throats tried at by their 
ponderous arms, and with fixed features the head was held 
unmoved ; and they wondered at having fovind their match. 

" Nor in the beginning of the contest was Alcides willing 
to employ his strength, and he wearied out the hero ; which 
his continued panting betrayed, and the cold sweat from 
his fatigued body. Then his wearied neck began to shake ; 
then breast to be pressed upon by breast ; then the thighs 
to totter, stmck sideways by the hand. Now does the victor 
grasp the back of the hero as it is giving way, and, his 
flanks squeezed up, he encircles him around the middle ; 
and his feet inserted, he spreads asunder his thighs, and 
stretches the hero with all his limbs upon the ground. 
The scorching earth carries off his sweat; with warm 
blood his veins are filled. The muscles swell out, and in 
all the limbs he grows hard, and, his body refreshed, he 
loosens the Herculean grasp. Alcides stands astounded at 
strength so vast; and not so much, although he was then 
inexperienced, did he dread the Hydra cut asunder hi the 
Inachian waves 1 , her snakes renewed. 

" Equally matched they struggle, the one with strength 
from the earth, the other with it his own. Never has it 
been allowed his unrelenting stepdame 2 to be more hi 
hopes. She sees the limbs of the hero exhausted by sweat, 
and his neck parched, upon which he bore Olympus. And 
when again he lays hands upon his wearied limbs, An- 
taeus, not waiting for the might of the foe, falls of his 
own accord, and, strength received, rises more mighty. 
Whatever vigour there is in the ground it is infused into 
his weary limbs, and with the struggling hero the earth 
labours. 

" When at last Alcides perceived the aid of the contact of 
his parent availing him, he said, ' Thou must stand, and no 

1 In the Inachian leaves) ver. 634. Inachus was one of the ancient kings 
of Argos, near which was situate the marsh or swamp of Lerna, where Her- 
cnles slew the Hydra with many heads, each of which, when cut off, was 
replaced by two new ones. 

- If is unrelenting stepdame) ver. 637. " He never was in greater dagger 
of being destroyed, which would have gratified the vengeance of his im- 
placable step-mother, Juno." 



156 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 647-670. 

further shalt tliou be entrusted to the ground, and thou 
shalt be forbidden to be laid upon the earth. With thy 
compressed limbs thou shalt cling fast to my breast ; thus 
far, Antaeus, shalt thou fall.' Thus having said he raised 
aloft the youth, struggling to gain the ground. Earth was 
not able to infuse strength into the limbs of her dying son. 
Alcides held him by the middle; now was his breast 
numbed by a torpid chill ; for long he did not entrust 
his foe to the earth. Hence, recording antiquity, the 
guardian of ancient times and the admirer of herself, has 
marked the land with his name. But a more noble 
name 1 has Scipio given to these hills, who called back the 
Punic foe from the Latian towel's ; for this was the encamp- 
ment on the Libyan land being first reached. Look ! you 
perceive the vestiges of the ancient entrenchment. .Roman 
victory first took possession of these plains." 

Curio, overjoyed, as though the fortune of the spot would 
wage the war, and preserve for himself the destinies of 
former commanders, pitching his unlucky tents upon the 
fortunate spot, indulged his camp with hopes, and took their 
omen away from the hills, and with unequal strength pro- 
voked the warlike foes. All Africa, which had submitted to 
the Reman standards, was then under the command of 
Varus'-'; who, though trusting in the Latian strength, still 
summoned from every side the forces of the king of the 
Libyan nation, and standards that attended their Juba J 
from the extremities of the world. Not a more extended 

1 But a more nolle name) ver. 656. He alludes to the " Comeliana 
Castra," or " Cornelian Camp." It was so called from P. Cornelius Afri- 
canus Scipio the elder, who landed in that vicinity B.C. 204, and having 
vanquished Hasdrubal and Syphax, alarmed the Carthaginians to such a 
degree, that they were obliged to recall Hannibal and Mago from Italy. 

3 Command of Varus) ver. 667. This was Fublius Attius Varus, whom 
we have already met with in B. ii. 1. 466, as running away from Auximum 
in Italy. Caesar, in the Civil War, B. i. c. 31, thus mentions his arrival in 
Africa : " When Tubero arrived in Africa, Le found Attius Varus in com- 
mand of the province, who, having lost his cohorts, as already related, at 
Auximum, had straightway fled to Africa, and finding it without a governor, 
had seized it of his own accord, and, making levies, had raised two legions." 

3 Attended their Juba) ver. 670. He was the son of Hiempsal, who had 
been re-established on the Numidian throne by Fompey, whose cause Juba 
now espoused. He was also probably influenced by personal enmity against 
Curio, who, when Tribune of the people, had proposed a law for reducing the 



B. iv. 671-681.] PHARSALIA. 157 

region was there under any master. Where the realms are 
the longest, on the western extremity, Atlas, hi the vici- 
nity of Gades, terminates them ; on the south J , Ammon, 
adjacent to the Syrtes ; hut where in its breadth extends 
the scorching track of his vast realms, it divides the Ocean 3 , 
and the humt-up regions of the scorched zone suffice for 
the space that intervenes. 

Races so numerous follow the camp ; the Autololes 3 and the 
wandering Numidians, and the Gfetulian, ever ready with his 
uncaparisoned horse 4 ; then the Moor, of the same colour as 
the Indian ; the needy Nasamonian 5 , the swift Marmaridse i; , 
mingled with the scorched Garamantes, and the Mazagian 7 , 

kingdom of Juba to the condition of a Roman province. On the ultimate 
success of the arms of Caesar, he fell at Utica, and, according to one account, 
he and Petreius were slain by each other's hand. 

1 0>i the south) ver. 673. It would appear curious that Lucan mentions 
the extent of Numidia from east to south, were it not the fact that the desert 
of Ammon and the adjacent coast lie in a considerably more southern lati- 
tude than the eastern extremity of the kingdom near Grades and Mount 
Atlas. Besides, Gyrene, the Libyan desert, and Egypt were universally 
considered as essentially southern climes by the Roman Poets. 

2 It divides the Ocean) ver. 675. He seems to mean that the whole region 
which lay between the Mediterranean and the southern ocean of Africa, 
bounded, as before mentioned, east and west, belonged to Juba. This seems 
a better explanation than that given by some who would have the Poet to 
me:m that the whole track of country from north to south which lay between 
the Eastern (or Atlantic) Ocean and the Western Ocean (or Red Sea), be- 
longed to Juba, as that would contradict what he has just said as to the 
breadth of the kingdom, and would include Egypt in his dominions, a mis- 
take which Lucan certainly would not be guilty of. 

3 The Autololes) ver. 677. According to Pliny, the Autololes were a 
people of Mauritania Tingitana ; but Ptolemy places them on the western 
coast of Africa, and south of the range of Atlas. 

4 With his uncaparisoned horse) ver. 678. He alludes to the custom of 
the Gaetulians riding on horseback without saddles. In its widest sense, 
the region of Gsetulia included the inhabitants of the regions between Mau- 
ritania, Numidia, Gyrene, and the Great Desert 

s The needy Nasamonian) ver. 679. The Nasamones were a people of 
Libya who originally dwelt on the shores of the Great Syrtis, but were 
driven inland by the Greek settlers of Gyrene, and afterwards by the 
Romans. 

6 The smft Marmaridce) ver. 680. As to the Marmaridre, see the Note to 
B. iii. 1. 293. 

7 And the Mazagian) ver. 681. The Mazagians were probably the tame 
as the Maxyes, a people of the north of Africa, near the coast of the Lesser 
Syrtis, on the banks of the river Triton. They were said to claim descent 
from the Trojans. 



158 PHARSALIA. [B. IT. 681-698. 

that will rival the arrows of the Medes, when he hurls the 
quivering spear; the Massylian nation 1 , too, that sitting on 
the hare back of the horse, with a slight wand guides the 
mouth unacquainted with the bit ; the African huntsman, 
too, who is wont to wander with his empty cot, and at the 
same time, since he has no confidence in his weapons, accus- 
tomed to cover the infuriate lions 2 with flowing garments. 

Nor alone did Juba prepare arms hi the cause of civil 
strife, but aroused, he granted war to his private resent- 
ment. Him too, in the year in which 3 he had denied the 
Gods above and things human, by a tribunitial law Curio 
had attempted to expel from the throne of his forefathers, 
and to wrest Libya from its king, while, Rome, he was 
making a kingdom 4 of thee. He, remembering his sor- 
rows, fancies that this Avar is the fruit of himself retaining 
the sceptre. At this report, therefore, of the king approach- 
ing Curio now trembles. And because those youths have 
never been entirely devoted to the cause of Caesar, nor as 
soldiers had been tried in the waves of the Rhine, having 
been taken in the citadel of Corfinium 5 , both unfaithful to 

1 The Massylian nation) ver. 682. The llassyli were a people of Mau- 
ritania, who, like the Gaetulians, rode without saddles. 

2 To cover the infuriate lions) ver. 685. Pliny the Elder, in his Eighth 
Book, informs us that the Gaetulians were in the habit of catching lions by 
throwing a cloak or garment over their heads. The strength of the lion was 
commonly supposed to be centred in the eye. 

1 In the year in which) ver. 689. He means the year in which he was 
Tribune, and in which, according to report, he had been bribed by Caesar to 
desert the aristocratic party. 

4 He was making a kingdom) ver. 692. While he was covertly trying to 
bring Rome under the despotic sway of Caesar. 

* In the citadel of Corfinium) ver. 697. His soldiers, to his sorrow, were 
not the veterans who had fought under Caesar at the Rhine, but were those 
who, captured at Corfinium (see B. ii. 1. 507), had gone over to the party of 
Caesar. This circumstance is thus referred to in the Civil War, B. ii. c. 28 : 
" In the army there was one Sextus Quintilius Varus, who, as we have men- 
tioned before, was at Corfinium. When Caesar gave him his liberty he went 
over to Africa. Now Curio had transported to Africa those legions which 
Caesar had received under his command a short time before at Corfinium; 
so that the officers and companies were still the same, excepting the change 
of a few centurions. Quintilius, making this a pretext for addressing them, 
began to go round Curio's lines, and to entreat the soldiers not to lose all 
recollection of the oath which they first took to Domitius and to himself, 
their Quaestor, nor bear arms against those who had shared the same fortune, 
and endured the same hardships in siege, nor fight for those by whom they 
had opprobriously been called deserters." 



B. IT. 698-722.] PHARSALIA. 159 

their new leaders, and wavering to their former one, they 
deem either side equally right. But after he perceives all 
faint with inactive dread, and the nightly guards of the 
trenches forsaken by desertion, thus hi his agitated mind 
does he speak : 

" By daring great fears are concealed ; to arms will I re- 
sort the first. Let the soldiers descend to the level plains 
while they are yet my own ; rest ever produces a wavering 
disposition ; remove all consideration by fight. When the 
dire intent waxes strong with the sword grasped in hand, 
and helmets conceal their shame, who thinks of comparing 
the leaders, who of weighing the causes ? The side he has 
taken to that does he wish well ; just as in the shows of the 
fatal sand 1 no ancient grudge compels those brought for- 
ward to combat together, but they hate those pitted against 
them." 

Thus having said 2 , in the open plains he drew up his 
ranks, whom the fortune of war, about to deceive him with 
future woes, blandly received. For he drove Varus :) from 
the field, and smote their backs exposed in disgraceful 
flight, until their camp prevented it. But after the sad 
battle of the worsted Varus was heard of by Juba ; joyous 
that the glory of the warfare might be recovered by his 
own aid, by stealth he hurried on his troops, and by en- 
joined silence retarded the report of himself approaching, 
fearing this alone, through want of caution to be dreaded 
by the enemy. Sabura 4 , next after the king among the 
Numidians, was sent before to provoke the commencing 
battle with a small troop and to draw them on, as though 
pretending 5 that the warfare was entrusted to himself. 

1 In ike shows of tJi fatal sand) ver. 708, 9. "Fatalis arenae Muneribus." 
He alludes to the " muncra gladiatoria," or " gladiatorial shows," where the 
gladiators fought upon the " arena," or area covered with sand, of the Amphi- 
theatre. 

2 Thus having said) ver. 710. The speeches of Curio to his council of war 
and his soldiers are set forth at length in Caesar's Civil War, B. ii. c. 31, 32. 

* For he drove Varus) ver. 714. The particulars of this defeat are related 
in the Civil War, B. ii. c. 34, 35. Caesar says that of the enemy there were 
about six hundred killed and a thousand wounded. 

4 Sabura) ver. 722. This Sabura, or Saburra, was, with his forces, utterly 
defeated, B.C. 46, by P. Sittius. See the African War of Hirtius, c. 93. 

5 A* though pretending) ver. 722. Sabura is to advance with a small force 
to lead Curio to believe that he alone is marching against him, and that Juba 



160 PHARSALIA. [B. iv. 723-748. 

He himself in a hollow valley keeps back the strength of 
the realm ; just as the more crafty enemy 1 with his tail de- 
ceives the Pharian asps, and provokes them, enraged by a 
deceiving shadow; and obliquely seizes with safe grip the 
head of the serpent, stretching out in vain into the air, with- 
out its deadly matter; then the venom, baulked of its purpose, 
is squeezed out, and its jaws overflow with the wasted poison. 

To the stratagems Fortune gives success ; and fierce, the 
strength of the concealed foe not surveyed, Curio com- 
mands his cavalry to sally forth from the camp by night, 
and to spread far and wide over the unknown plains. He 
himself, about the first break of dawn, commands the signal 
to sound in the camp, often and vainly having begged them 
to apprehend Libyan stratagem and the Punic warfare, 
always fraught with treachery. 

The destiny of approaching death had delivered up the 
youth to the Fates, and the civil warfare urged on its author 
to his doom. Over steep rocks, over crags, along an abrupt 
path he led his standards ; when, espied afar from the tops 
of the hills, the enemy, in their stratagem, gave way a 
little, until, the hill being left, he entrusted his extended 
ranks to the wide plains. He, believing this a flight, and 
unacquainted with the concealed design, as though victo- 
rious, led forward his forces into the midst of the fields. 
Then first was the stratagem disclosed, and the flying 
Numidians, the mountains filled on every side, hemmed in 
the troops. At the same moment the leader himself was 
astounded, and the multitude, doomed to perish. 

is not near at hand. So in the Civil War, B. ii. c. 38, Cxsar snys, " Curio 
is informed by some deserters from the town that Juba has stayed behind in 
his own kingdom, being called home by a neighbouring war, and a dispute 
with the people of Leptis ; and that Sabura, who has been sent with a small 
fjrce, is drawing near to Utica. Curio, rashly believing this information, 
alters his design, and resolves to hazard a battle." It appears, however, by 
Caesar's account, that there was no stratagem at first on the part of Juba, 
whose advanced guard was attacked unexpectedly by the cavalry of Curio, 
with great slaughter; shortly after which, Curio neglecting to make proper 
enquiries, again attacked Sabura, who, falling back, gradually surrounded 
him with his armv, and destroyed him and his forces. See the Civil \Var, 
B. ii. c. 39-43. 

1 The more crafty enemy) ver. 724. He alludes to the ichneumon, or rat 
of Ei-ypt, which was said to be a deadly enemy to the asp of that country, 
and, provoking it with the shadow of its own tail, to cause it to raise its 
head, on which it would seize it by the throat and kill it. 



B. iv. 749-776.] PHARSALIA. 161 

The fearful sought not flight, the valiant not battle ; 
since not there did the charger, moved by the clangor of 
trumpets, shake the rocks with the beating of his hoof, 
working at his mouth that champs the stiffened reins, and 
spread his mane, and prick up his ears, and not with the 
varying movement of the feet did he struggle not to be at 
rest. His wearied neck hangs down. His limbs reek 
with sweat, and his parched mouth is clammy, his tongue 
hanging out ; his hoarse breast, which an incessant panting 
excites, groans aloud ; and the breath, hardly drawn, con- 
tracts the spent flanks ; the foam, too, grows hard upon 
the blood-stained bits. And now, compelled neither by 
whips nor goads, nor though prompted by frequent spur- 
ring, do they increase their speed. By wounds are the 
horses urged on. Nor avails it any one to have cut short 
the delay of his horny-hoofed steed, for they have neither 
space nor force for the onset ; he is only carried on against 
the foe, and affords room for the javelins, the wound being 
offered. 

But when first the skirmishing African sent forth his 
steeds hi a troop, then did the plains re-echo with the 
sound ; and, the earth loosened, the dust enveloped the air 
in its clouds, and brought on the shades, as vast as it is 
when hurled by the Bistonian whirlwind 1 . But when the 
miserable fate of war befell the foot, no fortune stood in 
suspense upon the decision of a doubtful conflict, but 
death occupied the duration of the -battle. Nor yet had 
they the power to run straight against them, and to mingle 
their troops. Thus, the youths, hemmed in on every side, 
by those who fight hand to hand 2 and by those who send 
them from above, are overwhelmed with lances obliquely 
slanting and held horizontally ; doomed to perish not by 
wounds or bloodshed, solely through the cloud of darts and 
the weight of the weapons. 

1 The Bistonian whirlwind) ver. 767. Thrace is called " Bistonia," from 
the Bistones, a people of that country between Mount Rhodope and the 
-35gean Sea, near Lake Bistonis. 

8 Whofiyht liand to hand) ver. 774. It seems not improbable that in this 
line " eminus " and " comminus " have changed places ; for the darts or 
epears that were thrown from a distance, " eminus," would fall obliquely, 
while the spears presented by those close at hand, "comminus," would be 
" rectce," or " horizontally" pointed. 

M 



162 FHARSALIA. [u. iv. 777-800. 

Therefore, ranks so numerous are crowded into a small 
compass, and if any one, fearing, creeps into the middle of 
the troop, hardly with impunity does he turn amid the 
swords of his own friends ; and the mass is made more 
dense, inasmuch as the first rank, their feet bearing back- 
wards, contract the circles. For them compressed there is 
now no room for wielding their arms, and then* crowded 
limbs are trodden on ; armed breast is broken by breast 
beaten against it. The victorious Moor did not enjoy a 
spectacle so joyous as Fortune really presented ; he did not 
behold the streams of blood, and the faulting of the limbs, 
and the bodies as they struck the earth ; squeezed up in 
the crowd every carcase stood upright. 

Let Fortune arouse the hated ghosts of dire Carthage by 
these new funeral sacrifices 1 ; let blood-stained Hannibal 
and the Punic shades receive this expiation so dire. ' Twere 
profane, ye Gods of heaven, for a Roman's fall on Libyan 
ground to benefit Pompey and the wishes of the Senate ; 
rather for herself may Africa conquer us ! 

Curio, when he beheld his troops routed on the plain, 
and the dust, laid by the blood, allowed him to perceive how 
great the slaughter, did not endure to prolong his life amid 
his stricken fortunes, or to hope for flight ; and he fell amid 
the slaughter of his men 2 , eager for death, and valiant with 
a bravery to which he was forced. 

What now avail thee the turmoil of the Rostra and the 
Forum, from which, with the arts of harangue 3 , the standard- 

1 New funeral sacrifices) ver. 789. " Inferiae " were propitiatory sacri- 
fices offered to the shades of the dead. He says that this slaughter of 
Romans by the hand of Romans will be as good as a propitiatory sacrifice to 
the shades of Hannibal and the Carthaginians who had suffered so much at 
the hands of their ancestors. 

8 Amid the slaughter of his men) ver. 797. The death of Curio is thus 
related by Caesar in the Civil War, B. ii. c. 42 : " Cneius Domitius, com- 
mander of the cavalry, standing round Curio, with a small party of horse, 
urged him to endeavour to escape by flight, and to hasten to his camp, and 
assured him that he would not forsake him. But Curio declared that he 
would never more appear in Caesar's sight, after losing the army which had 
been committed by him to his charge, and accordingly fought till he was 
slain." 

3 The arts of harangue) ver. 799. The " tribunitia ars," or " tribimitial 
art," of Curio was his eloquence, for which he was famous, and which, as 
Tribune of the people, when speaking from the Rostra, he knew how to use 



B. iv. 800-824.] PHARSALIA. 163 

bearer of the plebeians, thou didst deal arms to the people ? 
What, the betrayed rights ' of the Senate, and the son-in-law 
and the father-in-law enjoined to meet in battle ? Thou liest 
prostrate before dire Pharsalia has brought the chieftains 
together, and the civil warfare has been denied thee to be- 
hold. Is it thus, forsooth, that to the wretched City you 
pay the penalty with your blood ? Thus, ye powerful ones, 
do you atone with your throats for your warfare ! Happy 
Home, indeed, and destined to possess fortunate citizens, if 
the care of its liberty had pleased the Gods above as much 
as to avenge it pleases them ! 

Lo, Curio, a noble corpse, covered by no tomb, is feeding 
the Libyan birds. But to thee (since it will be to no pur- 
pose to be silent upon those things from which their own 
fame repels all the lengthened age of time) we grant, 
youth, the due praises of a life that deserved them. Not 
another citizen of capacity so great did Eome produce, or 
to whom the laws owed more, when pursuing what was 
right. Then did the corrupt age injure the City, after 
ambition and luxmy, and the possession of wealth, so 
much to be dreaded, had carried along with a torrent that 
crossed his path his unsettled mind ; and the altered Curio 
became the controller of events, charmed by the spoils of 
the Gauls and the gold of Ceesar. 

Although powerful Sulla acquired rule over our lives by the 
sword, and the fierce Marius, and the blood-stained Cinna, 
and the long line of Caesar's house 2 ; to whom was power so 
great ever granted? They all bought the City, he sold it 3 . 

to dangerous purpose. See B. i. 1. 275, where Curio, in his speech, alludes 
to the Eostra at Home. 

1 The betrayed rights) ver. 801. In allusion to the charge made against 
him of having been bribed by Caesar. 

2 The long line of Caesar's house) ver. 823. Lucan must clearly have 
been on bad terms with Nero when he penned this line, as he would not 
otherwise have joined the " series " of the house of Caesar, of which Nero 
was a member (through adoption), with Sulla, Marius, and Cinna, whom he 
repeatedly mentions as monsters of cruelty. 

3 He sold it) ver. 824. Virgil is supposed to refer to him in a somewhat 
similar manner in the Sixth Book of the JEneid, 1. 621. " He sold hia 
country for gold, and imposed upon it a powerful tyrant." 



M 2 



164 
BOOK THE FIFTH. 

CONTENTS. 

In the early part of the year the Consuls convene the Senate in Epirus, 
1-14. Lentulus addresses the Senators, and advises them to appoint 
Pompey Commander-in-chief, which is accordingly done, 15-49. The Poet 
praises the monarchs and nations who lent their aid, 50 64. Appius 
goes to consult the oracle at Delphi, which has now long been silent, as 
to the result of the war, 65-70. The oracle is described, 71-120. 
The Temple is opened, and Phemonoe, the Priestess, tries to dissuade 
Appius from his enquiries, 121-140. She is forced, however, to ascend 
the oracular tripod, 141-162. And is inspired by the prophetic frenzy. 
The oracle foretells, in ambiguous terms, the death of Appius himself 
before the battle of Pharsalia, at the Island of Eubcea, 163-197. The 
oracle is apostrophized by the Poet, 198-236. The soldiers of Caesar's 
party become mutinous, 237-261. Their threats and clamours for peace, 
262-296. Caesar presents himself before them thus complaining, 297-318. 
Headdresses them, 319-364. The tumult is appeased, 365-373. Caesar 
sends his army to Brundisium, and orders a fleet to be collected there, 
374-380. He then repairs to Rome, where he is made Dictator and 
Consul, 380-384. Evil omens give portentous signs, 384-402. He goes 
thence to Brundisium ; where collecting a fleet, he orders part of his troops 
to embark, although the skies betoken an approaching tempest, 403-411. 
He harangues his soldiers, 412-423. The sea is suddenly becalmed, and 
passing over he lands at Palaeste, in Epirus, 424-460. He encamps 
at Dyrrhachium, 461-475. Caesar entreats Antony to send over the 
remaining forces, 476-497. Impatient at his delay, he determines to go 
across, 498-503. He does so in a small boat, 504-570. Caesar en- 
courages the mariners in a tempest, 571-593. Which is described, 
594-653. He arrives in Italy, 654-677. He returns to Epirus, and his 
soldiers expostulate with him for leaving them, 678-700. Antony passes 
over with the rest of his troops, 701-721. Pompey determines to send 
his wife Cornelia to Lesbos, 722-739. He apprises her of his intentions, 
740-759. Cornelia's answer, 760-790. She embarks, 790-801. And 
Bails for Lesbos, 801-815. 

THUS did Fortune reserve the two 1 generals who had suffered 
the alternate wounds of warfare for the land of the Mace- 
donians, mingling adversity with prosperity. Now had the 
whiter sprinkled the snows on Hsemus, and the daughter 

1 Reserve the two) ver. 3. "Pares." This term, used in the athletic 
sports, to signify the two athletes or gladiators that were " comparati," 
" pitted " against each other, is often used by the Poet. 



B. v. 4-28.] PHARSALIA. 165 

of Atlas l who sets in the cold Olympus ; the day, too, was 
at hand which gives a new name to the Calendar , and which 
is the first to worship Janus :i , who introduces the seasons. 
But while the latter part still remained of their expiring 
sway, each Consul invited the Senators dispersed amid the 
duties of the warfare to Epirus. A foreign and a lowly 
retreat received the Roman nobles, and a foreign senate 
under a distant roof heard the secrets of the state. For 
who could call so many axes wielded by the laws, so many 
fasces \ a camp ? The venerable order taught the people 
that it was not the party of Magnus, but that Magnus was 
their partisan. 

When first silence pervaded the sorrowing assembly, 
Lentulus ' from a lofty seat thus spoke : " If strength exists 
in your minds worthy of the Latian spirit, if of your ancient 
blood, consider not in what land you are banished, and how 
far we are located from the abodes of the captured City ; 
but think of the aspect of your own assembly; and, able 
to command everything, first, Senators, decree this, which 
to realms and to nations is manifest, that we are the 
Senate. For whether Fortune shall lead us beneath the icy 
Wain of the Hyperborean Bear, or where the burning region 
and the clime shut up in vapours permits not the 
nights nor yet the days, unequal, to increase, the dominion 
of the world will attend us, and empire as our attendant. 
When the Tarpeian seat was consumed by the torches 
of the Gauls, and when Camillus was dwelling at Veii c , 

1 The daughter of Atlas) ver. 4. "Atlantis;" "the Atlantis," or 
" daughter of Atlas," is here used for the " Allan tides" or " Pleiades," who 
were fabled to have been originally the seven daughters of Atlas. He alludes 
to the middle of November, when the Pleiades set cosmically. 

3 dives a new name to the Calendar) ver. 5. The Calends or first day 
of January, on which the new Consuls came into office and gave their name 
to the commencing year in the " Fasti " or Calendar. See the Fasti of Ovid, 
B. i. 1. 53, et seq. 

3 To worship Janus) ver. 6. The month of January was sacred to the 
God Janus. See the Fasti of Ovid, B. i. 1. 63, et seq. 

* So many fasces) ver. 12. He alludes to the presence at the camp of 
the Consuls with the fasces and axes, the emblems of state. 

5 Lentulus) ver. 16. This was L. Cornelius Lentulus, one of the 
Consuls for that year. He raised two legions for Pompey in Asia. He 
was finally put to death by Ptolemy, the tyrant of Egypt. 

6 Dwelling at Veit) ver. 28. Veii, now called laola Farnese, was one 



166 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 29-51. 

there was Rome. Never by change of place has our order 
lost its rights. 

" Sorrowing abodes does Csesar possess, and deserted 
houses, and silenced laws, and judgment seats shut up in 
sad cessation from the law. That Senate-house beholds 
those Senators alone ', whom from the full City it banished. 
Whoever was not expelled ly us from an order so mighty, 
is here. Unacquainted with crimes, and at rest during a 
lengthened peace, the first fuiy of warfare dispersed us ; 
once again do all the members of the state return to 
their place. Behold ! with all the might of the world 
do the Gods above recompense us for Hesperia lost; 
the enemy lies overwhelmed in the Illyrian waves 2 ; in 
the loathsome fields of Libya, Curio, a large portion of 
Caesar's Senate :f , has fallen. Generals, raise your standards ; 
urge on the course of fate ; entrust to the Gods your hopes, 
and let fortune give us courage as great, as the cause gave 
when you fled from the foe. Our rule is closing with the 
finished year ; you, whose power is destined to experience 
no limit, Senators, consult for the common welfare, and 
bid Magnus be your leader." 

With joyous applause the Senate received the name, and 
entrusted to Magnus his own and his country's fate. Then 
honors were distributed among kings and" nations that 
deserved them; both Ehodes sacred to Phcebus 4 and powerful 
by sea, was decorated with gifts, and the unpolished youth 

of the most ancient cities of Etruria, situate on the river Cremera, about 
twelve miles from Rome. It was here that the Senate were convened 
when the Gauls had destroyed Rome, on which they appointed Camillas 
Dictator. The Romans at this time were anxious to make Veil their 
capital, and were only dissuaded by the eloquence of Camillus. 

1 Those Senators alone) ver. 32-4. The meaning is that "the Senate- 
house at Rome now only beholds those Senators whom the senate ha* ex- 
pelled as enemies to the state at the time when the City was full, and 
not deserted as it now is." 

3 In the Illyrian waves) ver. 39. He alludes to the fate of Yulteius 
and his Opitergians, related in the last Book. 

3 A large portion of Casar's Senate) ver. 40. By reason of his eloquence 
and activity in Caesar's cause. 

4 Rhodes sacred to Phoebiu) ver. 51. The isle of Rhodes, off the coast 
of Caria in Asia Minor, was said to be especially beloved by Phosbus, who 
raised it from beneath the waves. There was a splendid temple of Apollo 
there, and the Colossus erected there was a statue of that God. 



B. v. 52-63.] PHARSALIA. 167 

of cold Taygetus 1 . In fame is ancient Athens praised, and 
for her own Massilia 2 is Phocis presented with freedom 
from tribute. Then do they extol Sadales 3 , and brave 
Cotys, and Deiotaras 4 faithful in arms, and Ehasipolis 5 , 
the ruler of a frozen region ; and, the Senate decreeing 
it, they bid Libya pay obedience to the sceptre-bearing 
Juba. Alas, sad destinies ! behold ! Ptolemy, to thee , 
most worthy of the sway of a faithless race, the shame of 
Fortune and the disgrace of the Gods 7 , it is permitted to bind 
thy pressed locks with the Pellsean diadem. A remorseless 
sword, boy, dost thou receive over thy people ; and would 
it were over thy people alone ! The palace of Lagus has 
been given; to this the life of Magnus is added; and by 

1 Youth of cold Taygttus) ver. 52. The Lacedaemonians are here meant, 
whose country was separated from Messenia by the mountain range of 
Taygetus. 

a For Iter oien Massilia) ver. 53. This could not in reality be the ground 
for the honours paid to Phocis in Greece, inasmuch, as has been already 
remarked, Massilia was a colony from Phocrea in Asia Minor. See B. iii. 1. 340. 

3 Extol Sadales) ver. 54. Sadales was the son of Cotys, king of Thrace, 
and was sent with his father at the head of some cavalry, to assist Pompey. 
He was forgiven by Caesar after the battle of Pharsalia, and left his king- 
dom to the lioman people. Of his father, Cotys, nothing further is 
known. 

4 And Deiotarus) ver. 55. Deiotarus was Tetrarch and king of Galatia, 
who, though extremely advanced in years, came to the aid of Pompey with 
six hundred horsemen. He was afterwards pardoned by Caesar, but, according 
to Cicero, Caesar deprived him of his Tetrarchy and kingdom, though he 
suffered him to retain his title. 

5 And RJtasipolis) ver. 55. This person, whose name is also spelt 
" Rhascuporis," was chieftain of a Thracian tribe, lying between Mount 
Pthodope and the sea. He joined Pompey with two hundred horse at 
Dyrrhachium. Caesar, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. iv., speaks of his troops as 
coming from Macedonia, and as being of extraordinary valour. 

6 Ptolemy, to tkee) ver. 59. This was Ptolemy XII., king of Egypt, 
by some said to have been gurnamed Dionysus. Lucan justly expresses 
his disgust that this unprincipled youth should succeed to a throne founded 
by " him of Pella," Alexander the Great. More particulars relative to this 
king will be found in the Ninth Book. He was accidentally drowned in the 
Alexandrian war against Caesar. 

7 Disgrace of tite Gods) ver. 60. By his father's will, the throne was 
given to Ptolemy and his sister Cleopatra jointly ; but he succeeded in ex- 
pelling her after she had reigned jointly with him for three years. By his 
murder of Pompey, he saved Caesar, doubtless to our Poet's sorrow, the 
criminality of having murdered his son-in-law Pompey. 



163 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 63-78. 

this a realm has been snatched away from a sister, and 
crime from a father-in-law. 

Now, the assembly broken up, the multitude takes up 
arms. When the people and the chieftains were resorting 
to these with uncertain chances, and with indiscriminate 
allotment, alone did Appius 1 fear to embark upon the 
doubtful events of the warfare ; and he entreated the Gods 
of heaven to unfold the destiny of events, and opened again 
the Delphic shrine of fate-foretelling Phoebus, that had been 
closed for many a year. 

Just as far removed 2 from the western as from the 
eastern clime, Parnassus with its twofold summit ' reaches 
to the skies, a mountain sacred to Phoebus and to 
Bromius 4 ; on which, the Deities united, the Theban 
Bacchanals celebrate the triennial Delphic festival 5 . 
This peak alone, when the deluge covered the earth , 
rose aloft, and was the mid division of the sea and the 
stars. Thou even, Parnassus, raised above the sea, didst 

1 Alone did Appius) ver. 68. This was Appius Claudius Pulcher, 
noted for his avarice and rapacity. He sided with Pompey, and died in 
the isle of Eubrca, before the battle of Pharsalia. He was distinguished for 
his legal and antiquarian knowledge, and was a firm believer in augury and 
divination, in which he was deeply skilled. 

2 Just as far removed) ver. 71. Delphi was said to be in the very centre 
of the earth, and for that reason was called the " navel of the earth." 

3 With its twofold summit) ver. 72. These two peaks or heights were 
called Hyampeum and Tithoreum. 

4 And to Bromius) ver. 73. Bacchus was said to be called "Bromius," 
from the Greek verb fytftvt, " to make a noise," in allusion to the shouts of 
his devotees. Macrobius, in the Saturnalia, B. i. c. 18, tries to prove that 
Apollo, or the Sun, and Bacchus were the same deity. 

* Triennial Delphic festival) ver. 74. The " Trieterica " was a festival 
celebrated in honor of Bacchus every three years, probably to commemorate 
his conquest of India. Ovid, in the Metamorphoses, B. vi. 1. 587, et seq., 
thus speaks of these rites : " It was now the time when the Sithonian 
matrons are wont to celebrate the triennial festival of Bacchus. Night is 
conscious of their rites ; by night Rhodope resounds with the tinkling of 
the shrill cymbal." See the Translation of tlie Metamorphoses in Bohn's 
Classical Library, pp. 116 and 216. 

4 Deluge covered the earth) ver. 75. He alludes to the tradition that in 
the flood of Deucalion the peaks of Parnassus alone arose above the waters. 
See the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. i. 1. 315, et seq. The height called 
Tithoreum was afterwards said to be sacred to Bacchus, while Hyampeum 
was devoted to Apollo and the Muses. 



B. v. 78-91.] PHARSALIA. 169 

scarcely lift the top of thy rocks, and as to one ridge 
thou didst lie concealed. There, when her offspring ex- 
tended her womb, did Psean, the avenger of his persecuted 
mother, lay Python prostrate l , with his darts till then un- 
used, when Themis ~ was occupying the sway and the 
tripods. When Psean beheld that the vast chasms of the 
earth breathed forth divine truths, and that the ground 
exhaled prophetic winds :t , he enshrined himself in the 
sacred caves, and there, become prophetic, did Apollo 
abide in the inmost shrines. 

Which of the Gods of heaven lies here concealed? 
WTiat Deity, descended from the skies, deigns, enclosed, to 
inhabit the darkened caverns ? What God of heaven puts 
up with the earth, preserving all the secrets of the eternal 
course of fate, and conscious of the future events of the 
world, and ready, himself, to disclose them to nations, and 
enduring the contact of mortals 4 , both mighty and power- 
ful, whether it is that he prophesies destiny, or whether it 
is that that becomes destiny which by prophesying he 
commands ? Perhaps a large portion 5 of the entire Jove, 
pervading the earth by him to be swayed, which sustains the 

1 Lay Python prostrate) ver. 79. He alludes to the slaughter by 
Apollo with his arrows of the serpent Python, which had been sent by 
the malignant Juno to persecute Latona when pregnant with Apollo and 
Diana. 

2 When Themis) ver. 81. Themis was said to have preceded Apollo in 
giving oracular responses at Delphi. She was the daughter of Coelus and 
Terra, and was the first to instruct men to ask of the Gods that which was 
lawful and right, whence she received the name of Themis, signifying in 
Greek " that which is just and right." 

3 Prophetic winds) ver. 83. " Ventos loquaces." These were cold ex- 
halations which were said to arise from a hollow cleft in the mountain 
rock, and, when received into the body of the priestess, to inspire her with 
prophetic frenzy. 

4 Contact of mortals) ver. 91. In allusion to the divine spirit animating 
a mortal, the Pythia, or priestess of the God. 

4 Perhaps a large portion) ver. 93. He suggests that possibly that 
divine spirit which pervades all things and keeps the earth poised in air, 
finds a vent in the Cirrhaean caverns or shrines of Parnassus. So Virgil, in 
the JEneid, B. vi. 1. 726, speaks of a spirit " perviiding all things," " spiritus 
intus alii." See also Ji. i. 1. 89. Lemaire somewhat fancifully suggests that 
this passage refers to a supposed axis of the earth, which the Poet imagined 
to run through it at Delphi, its so-called navel, and to be connected with the 
heavens. 



170 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 94-110. 

globe poised in the empty air, passes forth through the 
Cirrhsean caves, and is attracted, in unison with the sethereal 
Thunderer 1 . When this divine inspiration has been con- 
ceived in the virgin's breast, coming in contact with the 
human spirit, it re-echoes, and opens the mouth of the 
prophetess*, just as the 'Sicilian peaks undulate when the 
flames press upon ./Etna ; or as Typhoeus, buried beneath 
the everlasting mass of Inarime ', roaring aloud, heats the 
Campanian rocks. 

This Deity, however, made manifest to all and denied 
to none, alone denies himself to the pollution of human 
criminality. Not there in silent whispers do they conceive 
impious wishes. For, prophesying what is destined and 
to be altered for no one, he forbids mortals to wish, and, 
benignant to the just, full oft has he assigned an abode 
to those quitting entire cities, as to the Tynans 4 ; he has 
granted to drive back the threats of war, as the sea of Sala- 
mis 6 remembers; he has removed the wrath of the earth 6 

1 With the cetfureal Thunderer) ver. 96. The meaning probably is that 
an inspiration is derived thence, which, being an emanation from Jupiter, is 
still connected with him, and derives its vigour from him. 

2 The mouth of the prophetess) ver. 99. It has been suggested that in 
this passage there is a hiatus after " solvit," and that probably some lines 
are lost, as the likening of the Fythia to Mount .ZEtna seems forced and 
unnatural. 

3 Of Inarime) ver. 101. Inarime, now called Ischia, and formerly called 
JEnaria as well, was an island not far from the coast of Campania. The name 
is supposed by some to have been coined by Virgil from the expression of 
Homer, 2 ' Asians, as that writer is the first found to use it, and is followed 
by Ovid and our Poet in the present instance. Strauss tells us that 
"aremus" was the Etrurian name for an ape; if so, the name of the island 
may have been derived from, or have given name to, certain adjoining 
islands which were called " Pithecusae," or the " Ape islands." 

4 At to the Tyrians) ver. 108. He alludes to the Tyrians, who were 
said to have built Sidon and Tyre and Gadea by the command of the 
Delphic oracle. 

5 At the sea of Salami*) ver. 109. In the war of Xerxes against Greece, 
the Athenians were advised by the oracle to put their trust in wooden walls ; 
on which they forthwith took to their ships, and soon afterwards, under the 
command of Themistocles, conquered the fleet of Xerxes at Salamis. 

6 Removed Vie wrath of the earth) ver. 110. Egypt was said to have 
been relieved from famine by following the directions of the oracle, on 
Thmsius being killed by Busiris. Phrygia was, according to Diodorus 
Siculus, similarly relieved on burying Atys. So was Attica after it had, by 
direction of the oracle, given satisfaction to Minos, whose son Androgeua 
had been slain by the Athenians. 



B. v. 110-130.] PHAESALIA. in 

when barren, the end of it being shown ; he has cleared 
the air when generating pestilence 1 . Our age is deprived 
of no greater blessing of the Deities, than that the Delphic 
seat has become silent, since monarchs have dreaded 2 
events to come, and have forbidden the Gods of heaven 
to speak. Nor yet, a voice denied them, do the Cirrhaean 
prophetesses mourn; and they have the benefit of the 
cessation of the Temple's rites. For if the God enters 
any breast, a premature death is either the punishment 3 
of the Deity being received, or the reward; inasmuch 
as under the vehemence and the fitfulness of the frenzy 
the human frame sinks, and the impulses of the Gods 
shake the frail spirit. 

Thus does Appius, an enquirer into the remotest secrets 
of the Hesperian destiny, make application to the tripods 
for a length of time unmoved, and the silence of the vast 
rocks. The priest, requested to open the dreaded seats, 
and to admit to the Gods a trembling prophetess, seizes 
Phemonoe 4 , roving amid her wanderings around the 
streams of Castalia and the recesses of the groves, and 
compels her to burst open the doors of the Temple. The 
maid inspired by Phoebus, dreading to stand within the 
awful threshold, by a vain stratagem attempts to wean the 
chieftain from his ardent longing to know the future. 

1 When generating pestilence) ver. 111. The Thebans were delivered 
from a plague on banishing, by advice of the oracle of Delphi, the mur- 
derer of Laius. The Lucanians experienced a similar relief on appeasing 
the shade of Palinurus. Livy, B. ix., and Ovid in the Metamorphoses, 
B. xv. 1. 622, et seq., speak of the delivery of the Romans from pestilence 
on sending to Epidaurus for the God ..-Esculapius. 

3 Monarchs have dreaded) ver. 113. One of the Scholiasts suggests 
that Lucan alludes to Pyrrhus, king of Epirus ; while another says that the 
Emperor Nero is here alluded to, and that on his making enquiries of 
the oracle, the answer was that a matricide ought not to be let into the 
knowledge of the future, on which Nero, fearing the oracle might be 
harder still upon his crimes, sacrificed an ass to the God, and forbade any 
sacrifices to be offered to him in future, on which the oracle ceased. Ac- 
cording to another account, the oracle gave answer that Nero would be slain 
by the populace, which caused him to order the temple to be closed. 

a Either the punishment) ver. 117. Death being deemed a punishment 
or reward, according as the priestess was attached to or weary of life. 

4 Seizes Phemonoe) ver. 126. This is probably intended as a general 
appellation for the Pythia or priestess of Apollo, as it was the name given 
to his first priestess at Delphi before the times of Homer. 



172 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 130-158. 

" Wliy, Roman," says she, " does an unbecoming hope 
of hearing the truth attract thee? Its chasms dumb, 
Parnassus holds its peace, and has silenced the God; 
whether it is that the spirit has forsaken these yawning 
clefts, and has turned its changed course towards the far 
regions of the world; or whether, when Python was con- 
sumed by the barbarian torch ', the ashes entered the im- 
mense caverns, and obstructed the passage for Phoebus; 
or whether, by the will of the Gods, Cirrha is silent, and 
it is sufficient that the secrets of future fate have been 
entrusted to yourselves in the lines of the aged Sibyl ; or 
whether Paean, wont to drive the guilty from his temples, 
finds not in our age mouths by which to disclose the Fates." 

The deceit of the maiden is manifest, and, the Deities 
being denied, her very fear imparts confidence. Then 
does the wreathed fillet 2 bind her locks in front, and, 
her hair streaming down her back a white head-dress 
encircles with Phocsean laurel. She, dreading the fate- 
foretelling recess of the deep-seated shrine, in the first part 
of the Temple comes to a stop, and, feigning the inspiration 
of the God, utters from her breast, undisturbed beneath, 
fictitious words, testifying a spirit moved by no divine frenzy 
with no murmurs of a hurried voice, and not so much 
about to injure the chieftain to whom she is prophesying 
falsely, as the tripods and the credit of Phoebus. 

Her words broken with no trembling sound, her voice 
not sufficing to fill the space of the capacious cavern, 
the laurels shaken off, with no standing of her hair on end, 
and the summits of the Temple without vibration, the 
grove, too, unshaken, all tJiese betrayed that she dreaded to 
yield herself to Phoebus. Appius beheld the tripods un- 
occupied, and raging, exclaimed : 
" Impious woman, thou shalt both pay the deserved penalty 

' By the barbarian torch) ver. 134. This has been generally said to refer 
to the plunder and burning of the Temple at Delphi by firennus and his 
Gauls, who invaded Greece from Fannonia, B.C. 279; but on examination it 
would appear that Brennus was utterly thwarted in his attempts by the 
bravery of the Delphians, 4000 in number. The passage may possibly refer 
to the attack made by Fyrrhus, king of Epirus, upon the Temple. 

2 The meathed JUiet) ver. 143. The " vittae," " fillets," and " infulae," 
" bands," formed an especial part of the costume of the priestesses who were 
devoted to the worship of the Gods. The Vestal virgins at Home wore them. 



B. v. 158-183.] PHARSALIA. 173 

to me and to the Gods of heaven, whom thou art feigning 
as inspiring thee, unless thou art hidden in the caverns, and, 
consulted upon the tumults so vast of the trembling world, 
dost cease, thyself, to speak." 

At length, the affrighted maiden flies for refuge to the 
tripods, and, led away within the vast caverns, there re- 
mains, and receives the Deity in her unaccustomed breast ; 
who pours forth the spirit of the rock, now for so many 
ages unexhausted, into the prophetess ; and at length 
having gained the Cirrhsean breast 1 , never more fully did 
Psean enter into the limbs of female inspired by him; 
and he banishes her former mind, and throughout her 
whole breast bids the mortal 2 give way to himself. 
Frantic, she rages throughout the cave, bearing her neck 
possessed, and, shaking from her upright hair both the 
fillets of the God and the garlands of Phcebus, through the 
empty space of the Temple she whirls round with her neck 
shaking to and fro, and throws prostrate the tripods that 
stand in her way as she roams along, and boils with 
mighty flames, enduring thee, Phoebus, raging with wrath. 

Nor dost thou employ the lash alone and goads 3 , flames, 
too, dost thou bury in her entrails ; and the bridle she 
submits to; nor is it permitted 4 the prophetess to disclose 
as much as to know. All time comes in a single mass; and 
ages so many press upon her afflicted breast. Such a vast 
chain of events is disclosed, and all the future struggles for 
the light of day ; arid fates are striving that demand 
utterance: not the first day, not the last of the world; 
not the laws of ocean, not the number of the sands, is 
wanting. Such did the Curnsean prophetess 5 , in the Eubcean 

1 Gained the Cirrkcean breast) ver. 165. The God now fully inspiring the 
priestess. 

2 Bids the mortal) ver. 168. The mortal part, or human mind. 

3 The lash alone and goads) ver. 175. The meaning is, that in her 
frenzy the priestess seems to be driven along with whips and goads. 

* Nor is it permitted) ver. 177. You hinder her from disclosing more 
than you wish the enquirer to be informed of. 

* The Cumaan proplietess) ver. 183. According to some accounts, Cumae 
in Italy, which was the abode of one of the Sibyls, was founded by a colony 
from Chalcis in the isle of Eubcea. He alludes to the occasion on which 
the Sibyl offered the books which revealed the destinies of Home for sale to 
Tarquinius Superbus, and says that she favoured the Roman people alone 
by putting the prophecies in writing, which bore reference to them. 



174 PHARSALIA. [a v. 183-211. 

retreat, indignant that her frenzy should be at the service 
of many nations, cull with proud hand the Roman from 
the heap of destinies so vast. 

Thus does Phemonoe, filled with Phoebus, struggle, 
while thee, O Appius, consulter of the Deity hidden in 
the Castalian land, with difficulty she discovers, long amid 
fates so mighty seeking thee concealed. Then, first the 
foaming frenzy flows forth about her maddened lips, and 
groans and loud murmurs from her gasping mouth ; then 
are there mournful yells in the vast caverns, and at last 
voices resound, the maiden now overcome : 

" O Roman, thou dost escape from the vast threatenings 
of war, free from dangers so great; and alone shalt thou 
take thy rest in the wide valley of the Eubcean quarter." 1 
The rest Apollo suppresses, and stops her speech. 

Ye tripods, guardians of the Fates, and ye secrets of the 
world, and thou, Psean, powerful in the truth, uninformed 
by the Gods of heaven of no day of the future, why dost 
thou hesitate to reveal the latest moments of the falling 
state, and the slaughtered chieftains, and the deaths of poten- 
tates, and nations so numerous falling amid Hesperian 
bloodshed ? Is it that the Deities have not yet decreed 
mischief so great, and are destinies so numerous withheld, 
while the stars yet hesitate to doom the head of Pompey ? 
Or art thou silent upon the crimes of the avenging sword 2 , 
and the penalties of civic frenzy and tyrannies falling 
to the avenging Bruti 3 once again, that Fortune may fulfil 
Tier aim ? 

Then, smitten by the breast of the prophetess the doors 
open, and, hurried on, she leaps forth from the Temple. 
Her frantic fit still lasts ; and the God whom as yet she has 

1 Of the Eubcean quarter) ver. 196. " Lateris;" literally, "side," in 
allusion to the situation of the long narrow island of Eubtca, which skirts 
the eastern side of Greece. According to Lucan and some other authors, 
Appius thought that this prophecy, which was really significant of where he 
should die, bore reference to a kingdom reserved for him by destiny. 

8 Of the avenging sword) ver. 206. He alludes to the swords of Brutus 
and his fellow conspirators. 

3 Falling to the avenging Bruti) ver. 207. By alluding to the Bruti, he 
means that .Tuning Brutus is to take the same part in ridding his country of 
Caesar's tyranny that Junius Brutus, of the same family, did in the expulsion 
of the tyrant Tarquins. 



B. v. 211-233.] PHARSALIA. 175 

not expelled still remains in her not having said the 
whole. She still rolls her fierce eyes, and her looks 
wandering over the whole sky, now with timid, now stern 
with threatening, features ; a fiery blush tints her face and 
her livid cheeks, and a paleness exists, not that which is 
wont to he in one who fears, but inspiring fear. Nor does 
her wearied heart find rest ; but, as the swelling sea after 
the hoarse blasts of Boreas moans, so do silent sighs 
relieve the prophetess. And while from the sacred light by 
which she has beheld the Fates she is being brought back 
to the sunbeams of ordinary day, shades, intervening, come 
on. Psean sends Stygian Lethe into her entrails, to snatch 
from her the secrets of the Gods. Then from her breast 
flies the truth, and the future returns to the tripods of 
Phoebus, and, hardly come to herself, she falls to the ground. 
Nor yet, Appius, does the nearness of death alarm thee, 
deceived by ambiguous responses; but, the sway of the 
world being matter of uncertainty, hurried on by vain 
hopes thou dost prepare to found the kingdom of Euboean 
Chalcis. Alas, madman ! what one of the Gods, Death 
excepted, can possibly grant for thee to be sensible of no 
crash of warfare, to be exempt from the woes so numerous 
of the world ? The secret recesses of the Eubosan shore thou 
shalt possess, buried in a memorable tomb, where rocky Ca- 
rystos 1 straitens the outlets of the sea, and where Khamnus 2 

1 Rocky Carystos) ver. 232. Carystos was a town on the south-eastern 
coast of Eubcea, looking towards the Cyclades ; consequently Lucan is wrong 
in representing it as situate on the straits of Eubcea. It was situate at the 
foot of Mount Oche, and was said to have been founded by Dryopes ; and, 
according to tradition, it was named after Carystus, son of Chiron. The 
mineral called "asbestus" was found in the neighbourhood. The spot is 
now called Karysto or Castel Rosso. 

2 Where Rhamnits) ver. 233. Rhamnus was a demns or borough of 
Attica, situate on a rocky peninsula on the eastern coast, about seven 
miles from Marathon. The Poet refers to the worship in this place 
of Nemesis, the Goddess of Retribution, the avenger of crime and the 
punisher of presumption. She had a famous temple here, in which was her 
statue carved by Phidias out of a block of marble which the Persians 
brought to Greece for the purpose of making a statue of Victory, and 
which was thus appropriately devoted to the Goddess of Retribution. 
It wore a crown and had wings, and, holding a spear of ash in the right 
hand, was seated on a stag. According to another account the statue was 
the work of Agoracritus, the disciple of Phidias. 



176 PHAKSALIA. [B. v. 233-257. 

worships the Deity hostile to the proud; where the sea 
boils, enclosed in its rapid tide, and the Euripus 1 hurries 
along, with waves that change their course, the ships of 
Chalcis to Aulis, hostile to fleets 2 . 

In the meantime, the Iberians subdued, Caesar returned, 
about to cany his eagles into another region ; when almost 
did the Gods turn aside the course so mighty of fate 
amid his prosperity. For, in no warfare subdued, within 
the tents of his camp did the chieftain fear to lose the 
profit 3 of his excesses; when almost, the bands, faithful 
throughout so many wars, satiated with blood, at last forsook 
their leader: whether it was that the trumpet-call ceas- 
ing for a time from its melancholy sound, and the sword 
sheathed and cold, had expelled the mania for war; or 
whether, while the soldier looked for greater rewards, he 
condemned both the cause and the leader, and even then 
held on sale his sword stained with crime. Not in any 
danger 4 was Caesar more tried, as now, not from a firm 
height, but from a trembling one, he looked down on 
everything, and stood propped up upon a stumbling spot ; 
deprived of hands so many, and left almost to his own 
sword, he who dragged so many nations to war, was sensible 
that it is the sword not of the general, but of the soldier, 
that is unsheathed. 

There was now no timid murmuring, nor yet anger con- 
cealed in the secret breast ; for the cause which is wont to 

check doubting minds, while each is afraid of those to whom 



1 And the Euripits) ver. 235. He is alluding to that part of the Euripus, 
or straits of Eubcea, which was the " Coele," or " Hollows of Eubcea," 
between the promontories Caphareus and Chersonesus, which were very 
dangerous to ships ; here a part of the Persian fleet was wrecked, 
B.O. 480. 

2 Aulis, hostile to fleets) ver. 236. He alludes to the violence of the tide, 
which, flowing and ebbing seven times each day and night, was in the 
habit of carrying ships, in spite of the wind, away from Chalcis, in 
Eubcea, towards Aulis, on the opposite coast of Boeotia. 

3 To lose the profit) ver. 242. Through the mutinous spirit of his 
soldiers. 

4 Not in any danger) ver. 249. Suetonius tells us that during his ten 
years' campaigns against the Gauls, Caesar had not experienced nny mutiny 
or sedition among his troops, but that he had several times to encounter it 
during the Civil Wars. The mutiny here described took place at Placentia, 
in the north of Italy. 



B. v. 257-288.] PHAKSALIA. 177 

he is a cause of fear, and thinks that the injustice of tyranny 
oppresses himself alone, does not withhold them ; inasmuch 
as the daring multitude itself has laid all its fears aside. 
Whatever offence is committed hy many goes unpunished. 
Thus they pour forth their threats : 

" Let it he permitted us, Csesar, to depart from the 
frantic career of crime. By land and by sea thou dost seek 
a sword for these throats, and our lives, held so cheap, thou 
art ready to throw away upon any foe. Gaul has snatched 
from thee a part of us ; Spain, with her severe wars, a part ; 
a part lies in Hesperia; and the whole world over, thee 
being the conqueror, does the army perish. What profits it 
to have poured forth our blood in the northern regions, the 
Rhone and the Rhine subdued? In return for so many 
woes to me thou hast given civil war. When, the Senate 
expelled, we captured the abodes of our country, which of 
mortals or which of the Gods was it allowed us to spoil? 
Guilty with hands and weapons we incur eveiy crime, 
pious, however, in our poverty. What limit is sought for 
our arms ? 

" What is enough, if Rome is too little ? Now look upon 
our hoary locks and our weak hands, and behold our feeble 
arms. The prime of our life is past, our years we have 
consumed in wars ; dismiss us, aged men, to die. Behold 
our unreasonable request ! to allow us not to lay our dying 
limbs upon the hard turf; not with our breath as it flies 
to beat against the clod 1 , and to seek in death the right 
hand that shall close our eyes 2 ; to sink amid the tears of 
our wives, and to- know that a pile is prepared for each. 
May it be allowed us by disease to end our old age Be- 
sides the sword let there be under Caesar's rule some other 
death. Why by hopes dost thou draw us on, as though 
ignorant for what monstrous crimes we are being trained ? 
As though, indeed, we alone are not aware, amid civil war, 
of which treason the reward is the greatest? Nothing has 
been effected by the wars, if he has not yet discovered that 
these hands are capable of doing everything. 

1 To leat against the clod) ver. 279. With the violent pulsation or 
palpitation consequent on the struggles of death. 

2 Shall close our eyes) ver. 280. He alludes to the custom of the nearest 
relative closing the eyes of the dying person. 

N 



178 PHAK3ALIA. [B. v. 288-318. 

" Nor do right or the bonds of law forbid us to attempt 
this. Amid the waves of the Rhine Ccesar was my chieftain, 
here he is my comrade. Those whom criminality defiles, it 
renders equal. Add that, under a thankless estimator of our 
deserts, our valour is lost ; whatever we do is entitled ' for- 
tune.' Let him be aware that we are his destiny. Though 
thou shouldst hope for every favour of the Gods, the soldiers 
enraged, Csesar, there will be peace." Thus having said, 
they began to rush to and fro throughout all the camp, and 
with hostile looks to demand the chief. 

Thus may it be, Gods of heaven! when duty and 
fidelity forsake us, and it is left to place our hopes in evil 
ways, let discord make an end in civil war. What chieftain 
could not that tumult alarm? But Caesar comes, accus- 
tomed headlong to meet the Fates, and rejoicing to exercise 
his fortunes amid extreme dangers ; nor does he wait until 
their rage may abate : he hastens to tempt their fury in full 
career. Not to them would he have denied cities and temples 
to be spoiled, and the Tarpeian abode of Jove, and the ma- 
trons of the Senate T , and brides doomed to suffer disgraceful 
indignities. He wishes indeed for everything to be asked of 
him ; he wishes the rewards of warfare to be courted ; only 
the recovered senses of the disobedient soldiery are feared. 

Alas ! Csesar, art thou not ashamed for wars now to prove 
pleasing to thyself alone that have been condemned by thy 
own bands ? Shall these be weary first of bloodshed ? Shall 
the law of the sword prove burdensome to them ? Wilt thou 
thyself rush through all right and wrong ? Be tired at last, 
and learn to be able to endure existence without arms ; let it 
be possible for thee to put an end to criminality. Barbarous 
man, why dost thou press on? Why now dost thou urge on 
the unwilling? Civil war is flying from thee. On a mound 2 
of turf built up he stood, intrepid in countenance, and not 
alarmed, deserved to be feared ; and, anger dictating, thus 
he spoke : 

1 And the matront of the Senate) ver. 305. For his own purposes, the 
Poet does not scruple to libel the memory of Caesar, and in no instance 
more so than in the present passage. 

a On a mound) ver. 316. It was the usual custom in the Roman 
camp to erect a tribunal formed of turf, from which the commander 
harangued his soldiers. 



B. v. 319-346.] PHARSALIA. 179 

" Him, against whom, when absent, soldiers, just now with 
countenance and right hands you were raging, you have, 
with breast bared and exposed to wounds. Fly, if an end of 
the warfare pleases you, your swords left here 1 . Sedition, 
that dares nothing bravely, proves faint hearts, and youths 
that meditate flight alone, and wearied with the prospering 
successes of their unconquered general. Go, and leave me, 
with my own destinies, to the warfare ; these weapons will 
find hands, and, yourselves rejected, Fortune will give in 
return heroes as many as the weapons that shall be un- 
employed. Do the nations of Hesperia attend the flight of 
Magnus with a fleet so great, and shall victory give us no 
attending multitude, to bear off the rewards of the shortened 
warfare, only receiving the concluding stroke, and, the price 
of your labours snatched away, to attend with no wound 
the laurel-bearing chariot? You, aged men, a crowd neg- 
lected and destitute of blood, then the commonalty of Borne, 
shall behold my triumphs. 

" Do you suppose that the career of Caesar can possibly 
feel ill results from your flight ? Just as, though all the rivers 
should threaten to withdraw the streams which they mingle 
with the deep, the sea would never decrease the more, its 
waters diminished, than now it swells. Do you suppose that 
you have imparted any weight to me ? Never does the care 
of the Gods thus lower itself, that the Fates should have 
leisure to attend to your death and your safety. On the move- 
ments of the great do ah 1 these things attend. Through a 
few does the human race exist. Soldiers, beneath my fame 
the terror of the Iberian and of the native of the north, 
certainly, Pompey your leader, you would have fled. Amid 
the arms of Caesar Labienus was brave 2 ; now, a worthless 

1 Your swords left here) ver. 321. " Bun away, your swords being left 
here," pointing to his breast. 

3 Lalienus was brave) ver. 345. T. Labienus had been an able and active 
officer under Caesar in his campaigns against the Gauls, by whom he was 
amply rewarded for his services. Notwithstanding the favours he had re- 
ceived from Caesar, he took the earliest opportunity of deserting him, and 
became a zealous adherent of Pompey, who appointed him one of his legates 
during the campaign in Greece. Caesar relates that he obtained from Pom- 
pey all the soldiers of Caesar who had been taken prisoners at Dyrrhachium, 
and after parading them before the army of Pompey, and taunting them as 
his " fellow soldiers," and upbraiding them with asking if it was the cus- 

K 3 



180 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 346-370. 

runaway, with the chief whom he has preferred he wanders 
over land and sea. 

" Nor more pleasing to me will be your fidelity, if, myself 
neither your foe nor your leader, you do not carry on the war. 
Whoever deserts my standards, and does not deliver up his 
arms to Pompey's party, he never wishes to be on my side. 
Undoubtedly this camp is a care to the Gods, who liavc 
been desirous only to intrust me to wars so mighty upon a 
change of my soldiers. Alas ! how vast a weight does For- 
tune now remove from my shoulders, wearied with the 
burden ! It is granted me to disarm right hands that hope 
for everything, for which this earth does not suffice. Now 
at least, for myself will I wage the war; depart from the 
camp, base Quirites, deliver up my standards to men. But 
the few, in whom as the prompters this madness has raged, 
not Cffisar, but retribution, detains liere. Fall down upon 
the earth, and extend your faithless heads and your necks 
to suffer the stroke ; and you, raw recruits, by whose 
strength alone my camp shall henceforth stand, be wit- 
nesses of the punishment, and learn how to strike, learn 
how to die." 

The motionless throng trembled beneath his stern voice 
as he threatened; and of one person did a force so great, 
able to make him a private man, stand in awe ; as though 
he could command the swords themselves, able to wield 
the weapons hi spite of soldiers. Caesar himself is ap- 
prehensive lest weapons and right hands may be denied 
him for this dreadful deed ; their endurance surpasses the 
hopes of their stern leader, and affords throats \ not swords 

torn for veterans to run away, put them to death in the presence of the 
assembled troops. By his overweening confidence he contributed to the 
disastrous issue of the battle of Pharsalia. After that battle, flying from 
place to place, he at last arrived in Africa, and joined Scipio and Cato, after 
whose defeat at Thapsus he fled into Spain and joined Cneius, the son of 
Pompey. He fell at the battle of Munda, which, very probably, was lost 
through his carelessness. 

1 And affords throats) yer. 370. Suetonius thus mentions this cir- 
cumstance : " He disbanded the entire ninth legion at Placentia, with 
ignominy ; and only with difficulty after many prayers and entreaties, and 
not without punishing the guilty, did he reinstate it." Appian, in his Second 
Book on the Civil War, says, " A decimation being ordered of the ninth 
legion, which had been the first mover in the sedition, amid the lamentations 
of all, the Praetors on their knees suppliantly asked pardon of him. Caesar, 



B. v. 371-380.] PHARSALIA. 181 

alone. Nothing does he fear more than to lose spirits 
inured to crime, and that they should be lost ; with ratifica- 
tion so dire 1 of the treaty is peace obtained, and, appeased 
by punishment, the youths return to their duty. 

This force, after ten encampments 2 , he orders to reach 
Brundisium, and to call hi all the shipping, which the 
winding Hydrus', and the ancient Taras 4 , and the secret 
shores of Leuca 6 , which the Salapian fens receive, and 
the Sipus 7 , situate below the mountains; where the fruitful 
Garganus 8 from Apulia, winding through the Ausonian 

with difficulty getting the better of his feelings of irritation, granted that 
only one hundred and seventy of the seditious should be selected from the 
principal ones, out of whom twelve were selected by the rest for punishment." 

1 Ratification so dire) ver. 372. This is said sarcastically, and, not im- 
probably, there is a play intended upon the use of the word " ictus," in 
allusion to the resemblance between " ictus jugulorum," the " blows on the 
necks" of those punished, and the "ictus feederis," the "conclusion" or "ra- 
tification " of the treaty. 

3 After ten encampments) ver. 374. " Decimis castris," literally, " in ten 
encampments," meaning ten days' inarch. 

3 Winding Hydras) ver. 375. Hydrus was a winding river of Calabria, 
which flowed past Hydrus, or Hydruntum, an ancient town of that district, 
with a good harbour, and near a mountain called Hydrus. It was frequently 
a place of transit. The town is now called Otranto. 

4 Tlie ancient Taras) ver. 376. Taras was the Greek name of the city of 
Tarentum, situate on the western coast of the Peninsula of Calabria. Near 
its walls flowed a river named Taras. It was said to have been founded by 
the lapygians and Cretans, and to have derived its name from Taras, a son 
of Neptune, or Poseidon. Its present name is Taranto. 

5 Shores of Leuca) ver. 376. Leuca was a town at the extremity of the 
lapygian Promontory, in Calabria, with a fetid spring, under the bed of 
which the Giants who were vanquished by Hercules were said to have been 
buried. 

8 The Salapian fens) ver. 377. Salapia was an ancient town of Apulia, 
in the Daunian district, situate on a lake which was named after it. Accord- 
ing to the common tradition, it was founded by Diomedes. In the second 
Punic war it revolted to Hannibal after the battle of Cannse, who is said 
here to have indulged in the debaucheries of Campania. It afterwards sur- 
rendered to the Romans, and delivered up to them its Carthaginian garrison. 
The original site was at some distance from the sea, but in consequence of its 
unhealthy situation it was removed to a new town on the sea-coast, which 
was built by M. Hostilius, about B.C. 200. 

7 And the Sipus) ver. 377. Sipus was the Grecian name of Sipuntum, a 
town of Apulia, between Mount Garganus and the sea-shore. It was a 
.Roman colony, and a place of considerable commercial importance. 

8 The fruitful Garganus) ver. 380. Garganus was the name of a moun- 
tain and promontory of Apulia, famous for its forests of oak. 



182 PHARSALIA. [R v. 380-394. 

land, enters into the Adriatic waves, opposed to the Dalma- 
tian Boreas and the southern breeze of Calabria. 

In safety, without his soldiers, he himself repairs to 
trembling Rome, now taught to obey the requirements of 
peace 1 ; and, indulgent to the entreating people, forsooth, 
as Dictator 2 he attains the highest honor, and, himself 
Consul, renders joyous the annals. For all the expressions 3 
by means of which now for long we have lied to our rulers 
this age was the first to invent. That in no way any 
legality in wielding weapons might be wanting to him, 
Ceesar was desirous to unite the Ausonian axes with his 
swords. He added the fasces, too, to the eagles ; and, 
seizing the empty name of authority, stamped the sad 
times with a worthy mark. For by what Consul will the 
Pharsalian year be better known? The Field of Man 
feigns 4 the solemnity, and divides the suffrages 5 of the 
commonalty not admitted, and cites the tribes, and to no 
purpose turns the votes into the urn. 

1 Obey the requirements of peace) ver. 382. " Servire togae." This is 
said ironically, meaning, " now ready to be enslaved by him while pretend- 
ing to exercise the arts of peace." 

2 As Dictator) ver. 383. Caesar had himself appointed Dictator, and Con- 
sul with P. Servilius Vatia Isauricus ; but thinking that his continuing to 
hold the Dictatorship was likely to alienate the affections of many of his own 
party, he resigned it in eleven days after. See the Civil War, B. iii. c. 2. 

1 All the expressions) ver. 385. This line must have been penned in R 
bitter spirit against Nero : his meaning is, that this year was the first one of 
the despotism of the Caesars, from which all those titles of honour which fear 
and adulation heaped upon the tyrant took their rise. Some of these titles 
were " Divus," " the divine ;" " Semper augustus," " the ever venerable ;" 
" Pater patriae," " the father of his country j" " Dominus," " the lord ;" 
" Fundator quietis," " author of repose." 

4 The Field of Mars feigns) ver. 392. By the use of the word "fingit," 
he means to say that the proceedings were spurious and illegal, and that 
Caesar and Servilius were not Consuls, but only Pseudo-Consuls. The votes 
for the Consulship were given by the tribes assembled on the Campus 
Martius, 

* Divides the suffrages) ver. 393. He means that Caesar, in which example 
he was followed by the succeeding emperors, cited the tribes of the people to 
the election of the Consuls on the Campus Martius, but that he did not 
admit them to give their votes, although, " dirimebat," he distributed the 
pebbles or ballots among them as though for the purpose, although, too, the 
herald cited (decantabat) the tribes by name, and although he drew lots 
(versabat) from the urn, as to the order in which the tribes were to give 
their votes. 



B. v. 395-412.] PHARSALIA. 183 

Nor is it allowed to prognosticate from the heavens ; the 
augur remaining deaf, it thunders, and the birds are sworn 
to be propitious, the ill-omened owl presenting itself. From 
that time first fell a power once venerated, stripped of its 
rights ; only, lest time should be wanting an appellation, the 
Consul of the month 1 distinguishes the ages in the annals. 
Besides, the Divinity who presides at Ilian Alba 2 , not de- 
servedly 3 , Latium subdued, still beholds the solemn rites, 
the Latin sacrifices 4 performed in the flaming night. 

Then he hurries on his course, and speeds across the 
fields which the inactive Apulian has deserted with his 
harrows, and has yielded up to slothful grass, quicker than 
both the flames of heaven and the pregnant tigress ; and, 
arriving at the Minoian abodes of the winding Brundisium 6 , 
he finds the waves pent up by the winds of winter, and the 
fleets alarmed by the wintry Constellation 6 . Base does it 
seem to the chieftain for the moments for hurrying on the 
war to pass in slow delay, and to be kept in harbour while 
the sea is open in safety, even to those who are unsuc- 
cessful. Spirits unacquainted with the sea thus does he 
fill with courage : 

1 Consul of the month) ver. 399. He laments that from this time the 
office of Consul was entirely stripped of its authority, and that only for the 
purpose of giving a name to the periods in the " Fasti Consulates," or annals, 
from their Consulships, were the Consuls elected ; and in many instances 
only for a month, according to the whim of the emperor. Suetonius speaks 
of Caligula, Claudius, and Nero as acting thus, and Tacitus mentions the 
same practice with regard to the Emperor Otho. 

2 At Ilian Alba) ver. 400. Alba was said to have been founded by 
Ascanius, or lulus, the son of Jineas, the Trojan. 

3 Not deservedly) ver. 401. He means that Jupiter Latialis was not 
worthy of this sacrifice being performed in his honor, in consequence of his 
neglect in having allowed Latium to be subjected to the tyranny of Caesar. 

4 The Latin sacrifices) ver. 402. As to the Latinae, or rites of Jupiter 
Latialis, see the First Book, 1. 550, and the Note to the passage. 

5 Winding Brundisium) ver. 406. See a description of the shores of 
Brundisium in the Second Book, 1. 613 : Lucan calls them " Minoi'a" from 
the tradition which represented the Cretans, over whom Minos reigned, as 
being the founders of the colony. 

' Wintry Constellation) ver. 408. " Hiberno sidere." It is not precisely 
known to which of the heavenly bodies he refers as the "Hibernum sidus." 
The Constellations of the Dolphin and the Pleiades have been suggested ; but 
it is not unlikely that he alludes to the wintry aspect of the sun, which, by 
reason of his absence during the prolonged nights of winter, causes cold. 



184 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 413-432. 

"More constantly do the wintry blasts possess the 
heavens and the main, when they have once begun, than 
those which the perfidious inconstancy of the cloudy 
spring forbids to prevail with certainty. No windings are 
there of the sea, and no shores are there to be surveyed 
by us, but straight onward are the waves to be cleaved, 
and by the aid of the north wind alone. that he would 
bend the head of our topmost mast, and press on hi his 
fury, and waft us to the Grecian walls, lest the partisans of 
Pompey should come with impelled oars from all the shore 
of the Phseacians * upon our languid sails ; sever the cables 
which retain our conquering prows; already are we losing 3 
the clouds and the raging waves." 

The first stars of the sky y , Phoebus concealing himself 
beneath the waves, had come forth, and the moon had now 
spread her shadows, when they both unmoored the ships, 
and the ropes unfurled the full sails ; and the sailor, the 
end of the yard being bent by the rope towards the left, 
slants the canvass to catch the wind, and expanding the 
loftiest top-sail, catches the gales that might die away. 
When first a slight breeze has begun to move the sails, 
and they swell a little, soon, returning to the mast, they 

1 Of the Pkceacians) ver. 420. The Phaeacians were the ancient inhabit- 
ants of the island of Corcyra, now Corfu. His fear is lest the ships of 
war of Pompey should be enabled to overtake his heavy transports. Caesar 
says, in his Civil War, B. iii. c. 5, " Pompey had resolved to fix his 
winter quarters at Dyrrhachium, Apollonia, and the other seaports, to 
hinder Caesar from passing the sea, and for this purpose had stationed his 
fleet along the sea-coast." 

* Already are ice losing) ver. 423. He means that they are losing the 
opportunity afforded them by the stormy weather, which will hinder the 
enemy from obstructing their passage over. 

1 First stars of the tky) ver. 424. This important period is thus referred 
to by Caesar in his Civil War, B. iii. c. 6 : " When Cassar came to 
Brundisium, he made a speech to the soldiers : ' That since they were 
now almost arrived at the termination of their toils and dangers, they 
should patiently submit to leave their slaves ar.d baggage in Italy, and to 
embark without luggage, that a greater number of men might be put on 
board: that they might expect everything from victory and his liberality.' 
They cried out with one voice, that he might give what orders he pleased, 
that they would cheerfully fulfil them. He accordingly set sail the fourth 
day of January, with seven legions on board, as already remarked. The 
next day he reached Land, between the Ceraunian rocks and other dangerous 
pots." 



B. v. 432452.] PHARSALIA. 185 

fall into the midst of the ship ; and, the land left behind, 
the wind itself is not able to accompany the vessels which 
has brought them out. The sea lies becalmed, bound by a 
heavy torpor. More sluggish do the waves stand than un- 
moved swamps. 

So stands the motionless Bosporus 1 that binds the 
Scythian waves, when, the ice preventing, the Danube does 
not impel the deep, and the boundless sea is covered with 
ice ; whatever ships they have overtaken the waves keep 
fast ; and the horseman breaks through the waters not per- 
vious to sails, and the wheel of the migrating Bessan - cleaves 
the Mffiotis, resounding with its waves lying concealed. 
Fearful is the calm of the sea, and sluggish are the stagnant 
pools of becalmed water on the dismal deep; as though 
deserted by 1 stiffened nature the seas are still, and the 
ocean, forgetful to observe its ancient laws, moves not with 
its tides, nor shudders with a ripple, nor dances beneath the 
reflection of the sun. 

Detained, to dangers innumerable were the barks exposed. 
On the one side were fleets hostile and ready to move the 
sluggish waves with their oars ; on the other was famine 
threatening to come on them blockaded by the calm on the 
deep. Unwonted vows were found for unwonted fears, both 
to pray for the billows and the exceeding might of the winds, 

1 The motionless Bosporus) ver. 436. Under this name it is probable that 
be refers to the Black Sea, or Pontus Euxinus in general. The name was 
given by the ancients to two places : 1. The Thracian Bosporus, now the 
" Straits of Constantinople," uniting the Propontis, or sea of Marmora, with 
the Euxine or Black Sea ; which received its name, according to the tradition, 
from lo, when changed by Jupiter into an heifer. 2. The Cimmerian 
Bosporus, now the Straits of (Jaffa, which unites the Palus Mseotis, or 
sea of Azof, with the Black Sea. It derived its name from the Cimmerii, a 
nation supposed to live in the neighbourhood. 

3 The migrating Bessan) ver. 441. The Bessi were a fierce people of 
Thrace, who dwelt in the districts extending from Mount Haemus to the 
Euxine. Ovid mentions them in his Tristia, or Lament, B. iii. El. 10, 
1. 5 : ' The Sauromatae, a savage race, the Bessi, and the Getse surround 
me, names how unworthy of my genius to mention ! " The Poet here 
alludes to the custom of the migratory nations passing over the Palus Maeotia 
when frozen, with their waggons. 

3 As though deserted by) ver. 443-4. " Veluti deserta rigente sequora 
natura, cessant." Lemaire suggests that this is the proper translation of this 
passage : " Just like places rendered uninhabited by frozen nature the sea 
is still." 



186 PHARSALIA. [u. v. 452-469. 

so long as the waves should release themselves from their 
torpid stagnation, and there should be a sea. Clouds and 
indications of waves are there nowhere ; the sky and the 
sea languid, all hope of shipwreck departs 1 . But, the night 
dispersed, the day sends forth its beams obscured by clouds, 
and by degrees arouses the depths of the ocean, and for the 
mariners sets Ceraunia in motion 2 . Then do the ships 
begin to be borne along, and the furrowed waves to follow 
the fleet, which now moving on with fair wind and tide, 
pierces with its anchors the sands of Palseste :l . 

The region was the first to see the generals pitch their 
adjoining camps, which the swift Genusus * and which the 
more gentle Apsus 5 , surround with their banks. The cause 
for the Apsus being able to carry ships is a fen, which, 
deceiving by its water slowly flowing, it empties. But the 
Genusus, snows, now dissolved by the sun, and now 
dissolved by showers, render of headlong course; neither 
wearies itself by a long course, but, the sea-shore being 
near, is acquainted with but very little land. In this spot 
did Fortune bring together two names of a fame so great, 
and the hopes of the wretched world were deceived, that 

1 All hope of shipwreck departs) ver. 455. Amid the calm they despair 
of a storm which may cause them the risk of shipwreck. 

3 Sets Ceraunia in motion) ver. 457. Probably this expression is used in 
reference to the optical illusion which appears to represent the ship as sta- 
tionary to those on board, and the shore as though in motion. 

* Sands of Palceste) ver. 460. Palaeste was a town of Epirus, on the 
coast of Chaonia, to the south of the Acroceraunian Mountains. From a line 
in the Fasti of Ovid, it would seem that the Furies had a temple at this 
place, B. iv. 1. 236. The town on its site at the present day is called 
Palasa. 

* The smft Genvsus) ver. 462. The Genusus is a river of Illyria, which 
separated Dyrrhachium from Apollonia. It is now called the Iskumi. 

* More gentle Apsus) ver. 462. The Apsus, a river of Illyria, now 
called the Crevasta, flows into the Ionian Sea, This period of the War, 
when the rivals first met each other, is thus referred to in the Civil 
War, B. iii. c. 15: " Caesar, finding the road to Dyrrhachium already in 
the possession of Pompey, was in no great haste, but encamped by the river 
Apsus, in the territory of Apollonia, that the states which had deserved his 
support might be certain of protection from his outposts and forts : and there 
he resolved to await the arrival of his other legions from Italy, and to winter 
in tents. Pompey did the same, and pitching his camp on the other side of 
the river Apsus, collected there all his troops and auxiliaries." The trans- 
actions in Illyria, from the time of Caesar's landing up to this period, are 
related in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 7-13. 



B. v. 470-485.] PHAKSALIA. 187 

the chieftains might possibly, when separated by the trifling 
distance of a plain, condemn the criminality now brought 
home. For they have the opportunity to see their coun- 
tenances and to hear their voices ; and for many a year, 
Magnus, not personally did thy father-in-law, beloved by 
thee, after pledges so great 1 of blood, the birth and the 
death of a luckless grandson, behold thee, except upon the 
sands of the Nile. 

A part of his forces 2 left behind compelled the mind of 
Ctesar, aroused for mingling in the conflict, to submit to- 
delay in crime. Antony was the leader, daring in all 
warfare, even then, in civil war, training for Leucas 3 . 
Him delaying full oft by threats and by entreaties 4 does- 
Csesar summon forth : 

" O cause of woes so mighty to the world, why dost thou 
retard the Gods of heaven and the Fates ? The rest has 
been effected by my speed ; Fortune demands thee as 
the finishing hand to the successes of the hastened war- 
fare. Does Libya, sundered with her shoaly quicksands, 

1 After pledges so great) ver. 473-4. " Pignora tanta" refers to the 
marriage of Julia, the daughter of Caesar, with Pompey, and in the word 
"soboles" he refers to the child of which she was delivered, but which lived 
only for a very short period. 

2 A part of his forces) ver. 477. He alludes to the several legions which 
he had left behind him at Brundisium, under the command of Marc Antony. 

s Training for Leucas) ver. 479. " Jam tune civili meditatus Leucada 
bello." This is said ironically, and the Poet means to say that even then 
Antony was practising, by engaging in civil warfare, for the part he was to- 
take at the battle of Actium, which he fought against Augustus off the Leu- 
cadian Promontory. 

4 By threats and by entreaties) ver. 480. This is thus expressed by Caesar 
himself in his account of the Civil War, B. iii. c. 25 : " Those who 
commanded Pompey's fleet received frequent reproofs from him by letter, 
that as they had not prevented Caesar's arrival at the first, they should at 
least stop the remainder of his army ; and they were expecting that the 
season for transporting troops would every day become more unfavorable, as 
the winds grew calmer. Caesar, feeling some trouble on this account, wrote 
in severe terms to his officers at Brundisium, and gave them orders that as 
soon as they found the wind to answer, they should not let the opportunity 
of setting sail pass by, if they were even to steer their course to the shore of 
Apollonia, because there they might run their ships aground. That these 
parts principally were left unguarded by the enemy's fleet, because they 
dared not venture too far from the harbour." 



188 PHAKSALIA. [B. v. 485 518. 

divide us with uncertain tides? Have I in any way en- 
trusted thy arms to an untried deep, and art thou dragged 
into dangers unknown ? Sluggard, Ceesar commands thee 
to come, not to go. I myself, the first, amid the foe touched 
upon sands in the midst of them, and under the sway of 
others. Dost thou fear my camp ? I lament that the hours 
of fate are wasting; upon the winds and the waves do I 
expend my prayers. Keep not those back who desire to go 
on the shifting deep ; if I judge aright, the youths would 
be willing by shipwreck even to repair to the arms of Csesar. 
Now must I employ the language of grief; not on equal 
terms have we divided the world. Csesar and the whole 
Senate occupy Epirus; thou alone dost possess Ausonia." 

After he sees that he, summoned three or four times 
in this language, is still delaying, as he believes that it is 
he himself who is wanting to the Gods, and not the Deities 
to him, of his accord amid the unsafe shades of night he 
dares to try the sea, which they, commanded, stand in fear 
of, having experienced that venturous deeds have prospered 
under a favoring Divinity ; and waves, worthy to be feared 
by fleets, he hopes to pass over in a little bark. 

Night with its languor had noio relaxed the wearied care 
of arms ; rest was obtained for the wretched, into whose 
breasts by sleep a more humble lot inspires strength. Now 
was the camp silent ; now had its third hour l brought 
on the second watch ; Caesar with anxious step amid the 
vasty silence attempted things hardly by his servants 2 to be 
dared ; and, all left behind, Fortune alone pleased him as his 
companion. After he had gone through the tents, he passed 
over the bodies of the sentinels which had yielded to sleep, 
silently complaining that he was able :t to elude them. He 

1 Now had its third hour) ver. 507. This would be from 11 to 12 o'clock 
nt night, as the " vigiliae," or watches, of the Roman armies were divided 
into four, of three hours each, the first beginning at six o'clock in the evening. 

1 Hardly by his servants) ver. 509. Plutarch says that Caesar disguised 
himself in the dress of a servant. Appian states that he sent three servants 
before to get ready the vessel, as though for the use of a messenger from 
Csesar. 

* Complaining that he was able) ver. 51 2. That they were tasting of 
tranquil slumbers to which he himself was a stranger ; or perhaps it may 
mean that he was sorry to find the watch so badly kept. 



B. v. 513-537.] PHARSALIA. 189 

passed along the winding shore, and at the brink of the waves 
found a bark attached by a cable to the rocks eaten away. 

Not far from thence a house, free from all cares, propped 
up with no stout timbers, but woven with barren rushes 
and the reeds of the marsh, and covered on its exposed 
side with a boat l turned bottom upwards, sheltered the pilot 
and the owner of the bark. Csesar twice or thrice knocked 
with his hand at this threshold, that shook the roof. 
Amyclas arose from the soft couch, which the sea-weed 
afforded. " What shipwrecked person, I wonder," said he, 
" repairs to my abode ? Or whom has Fortune compelled 
to hope for the aid of our cottage?" Thus having said, 
the tow now raised 2 from the dense heap of warm ashes, 
he nourished the small spark into kindled flames ; free 
from care of the warfare, he knew that in civil strife 
cottages are no prey. O safe the lot of a poor man's life, 
and his humble home ! O gifts of the Deities not yet 
understood ! What temples or what cities could this 
befall, to be alarmed with no tumult, the hand of Caesar 
knocking ? 

Then, the door being opened, the chieftain says : 
" Look for what is greater than thy moderate wishes, and 
give scope to thy hopes, youth. If, obeying my com- 
mands, thou dost carry me to Hesperia, no more wilt tliou 
be owing everything to thy bark, and by thy hands dragging 
on a needy old age. Hesitate not to entrust thy fate to 
the God who wishes to fill thy humble abode with sudden 
wealth." 

1 With a boat) ver. 518. "Phaselo." The vessel which was called "phase- 
lus" was long and narrow, and probably received its name from its resem- 
blance to the shape of a kidney-bean, which was called " phaselus." They 
were especially used by the Egyptians, and were of various sizes, from that 
of a mere boat to a vessel suited for a long voyage. Appian mentions them 
as being a medium between ships of war and merchant vessels. Being built 
for speed, they were more noted for their swiftness than their strength. 
Juvenal, Sat. xv. 1. 127, speaks of them as being made of clay ; but of 
course that can only refer to " phaseli " of the smallest, kind. The one 
here mentioned was perhaps of this description. 

2 The tow now raised) ver. 524. Among the poor it was the custom to 
keep a log of wood smouldering beneath a heap of embers on the hearth 
from day to day, to be in readiness for cooking or giving a light when 
wanted. In the present instance we find an old rope or piece of tow used 
for a similar purpose. 



190 PHAR3ALIA. [B. v. 538-569. 

Thus he says, unable to be taught to speak as a private 
man, though clad in a plebeian garb. Tlien says the poor 
Amyclas, " Many things indeed forbid me to trust the deep 
to-night. For the sun did not take down into the seas 
ruddy clouds, and rays of one hue 1 ; one portion of Phoebus 
invited the southern gales, another, with divided, light, the 
northern. Dimmed, too, and languid hi the middle of his 
orb, he set, not dazzling the eyes that looked on lu'm, with 
his weakly light. The moon, also, did not rise, shining 
with slender horn, or hollowed with clear cavities in her 
mid orb ; nor did she describe tapering points on her 
straitened horn, and with the signs of wind she was red ; 
besides, pallid, she bears a livid aspect, sad with her face 
about to sink beneath the clouds. 

"But neither does the waving of the woods, nor the 
lashings of the sea-shore, nor the fitful dolphin, that 
challenges the waves 2 , please me ; nor yet that the sea-gull 
loves the diy land ; the fact, too, that the heron ventures 
to fly aloft, trusting to its hovering wing ; and that, 
sprinkling its head with the waves, as though it would 
forestall the rain, the crow paces the sea-shore with infirm 
step. But if the weight of great events demands, I would 
not hesitate to lend my aid. Either I will touch the com- 
manded shore, or, on the other hand, the seas and the winds 
shall deny it." 

Thus having said and unmooring his craft, he spreads 
the canvass to the winds ; at the motion of which, not only 
meteors gliding along the lofty ah*, as they fall, describe 
tracks in all quarters of tJie heavens ; but even the stars which 
are held fixed in the loftiest skies, appear to shake. A 
dusky swell pervades the surface of the sea ; with many a 
heaving along their lengthened track the threatening waves 
boil up, uncertain as to the impending blasts ; the swelling 
seas betoken the winds conceived. Then says the master 
of the quivering bark : 

" Behold, how vast dangers the raging sea is preparing. 
Whether it presages the Zephyrs, or whether the east 

1 Rays of one hue) ver. 542. "Concordes radii" may mean either "rays 
of like colour," or " rays pointing in the same direction," which latter meaning 
is amplified in the succeeding words. 

2 Challenga the tcaves) ver. 652. Burmann remarks that the dolphins seem 
by their gambols to challenge the ocean to rise in waves. 



B. v. 569-605.] PHAESALIA. 191 

winds, it is uncertain. On every side the fitful waves are 
beating against the bark. In the clouds and in the heavens 
are the southern blasts ; if we go by the murmurs of the 
sea, Corus is skimming along the deep. In a storm thus 
mighty neither will bark nor shipwrecked person reach the 
Hesperian shores. To despair of making our way, and to 
turn from the forbidden course, is our only safety. Let it 
be allowed me to make for shore with the tossed bark, lest 
the nearest land should be too distant." 

Csesar, confident that all dangers will give way for him, 
says, " Despise the threats of the deep, and spread sail to 
the raging winds. If, heaven prompting thee, thou dost 
decline Italy, myself thy prompter, seek it. This alone is 
thy reasonable cause for fear, not to have known thy freight ; 
one whom the Deities never forsake; of whom Fortune 
deserves badly then, when after his wishes expressed she 
comes. Secure in my protection, burst through the midst 
of the storms. This is the labour of the heavens and of 
the sea, not of our bark ; that, trod by Caesar, the freight 
will protect from the waves. Nor will long duration be 
granted to the raging fury of the winds ; this same bark will 
advantage the waves. Turn not thy hands ; avoid, with 
thy sails, the neighbouring shores ; believe that then thou 
hast gained the Calabrian port, when no other land can be 
granted to the ship and to our safety. Art thou ignorant 
what, amid a tempest so great, is preparing? Amid the 
tumult of the sea and sky, Fortune is enquiring how she 
shall favour me." 

No more having said, a furious whirlwind, the stern 
being struck, tears away the shrouds rent asunder, and 
brings the flapping sails upon the frail mast; the joints 
overstrained, the vessel groans. Then rush on perils 
gathered together from the whole universe. First, moving 
the tides, Corus, thou dost raise thy head from the Atlantic 
Ocean ; now, as thou dost lift it, the sea rages, and uplifts 
all its billows upon the rocks. The cold Boreas meets it, 
and beats back the ocean, and doubtful stands the deep, un- 
decided which wind to obey. But the rage of the Scythian 
north wind conquers and hurls aloft the waves, and 
makes shallows of the sands entirely concealed. And 
Boreas does not carry the waves on to the rocks, and he 



192 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 605-636. 

dashes his own seas against the billows of Corns ; and the 
aroused waves, even with the winds lulled, are able to meet 
in conflict. 

I would surmise that the threats of Eurus were not with- 
held, and that the winds of the South, black with showers, 
did not lie beneath the dungeons of the ^Eolian rocks ; that 
all, rushing from their wonted quarters, with violent whirl- 
winds defended their own regions, and that thus the ocean 
remained in its place. No small seas do they speak of 
as having been carried along by the gales ; the Tyrrhenian 
runs into the ^Egean waves ; the wandering Adriatic echoes 
in the Ionian sea. O how often did that day overwhelm 
mountains before beaten in vain by the waves ! What lofty 
summits did the subdued earth permit to be overcome! 
Not on that shore do waves so tremendous rise, and, rolling 
from another region of the earth, from the vast ocean have 
they come, and the waves that encircle the world speed on 
their monstrous billows. 

Thus did the ruler of Olympus l aid his wearied light- 
nings against the world with his brother's trident, and the 
earth was added to the secondary realms of Neptune, when 
Tethys was unwilling to submit to any shores, content to be 
bounded by the skies alone. Now as well would the mass 
of sea so vast have increased to the stars, if the ruler of the 
Gods of heaven had not kept down the waves with clouds. 
That was not a night of the heavens'; the air lay concealed 
infected with the paleness of the infernal abodes, and, op- 
pressed with storms, was kept down, and the waves received 
the s.howers in the clouds. Even the light so dreadful is 
lost, and the lightnings flash not with their brilliance, but 
the cloudy atmosphere obscurely divides for their flashes. 

Then do the convex abodes of the Gods of heaven resound, 
and the lofty skies re-echo, and, the structure strained, the 
poles re-echo. Nature dreads Chaos, the elements seem to 
have burst from their concordant repose, and night once more 1 

1 Did the ruler of Olympus) ver. 620. The meaning is, that with storms 
like this Jupiter determined to punish the world for its wickedness, both by 
means of his own lightnings and the seas, the realms of his brother Neptune. 

2 Not a night of the heavens) ver. 627. It was not a common darkness 
aloft, overspreading the heavens, but as though brought from the shades of hell. 

3 And Hiyht once more) ver. 636. " Nor." Night, in the sense of Chaos. 



B. v. 636-665.] PHARSALIA. 193 

to return about to mingle the shades below with the Gods of 
heaven. The sole hope of safety is, that not as yet have they 
perished amid ruin of the universe so great. As far as from 
the Leucadian heights the calm deep is beheld below, so far 
do the trembling mariners look down upon the headlong 
sea from the summits of the waves ; and when the swelling 
billows gape open once again, hardly does the mast stand 
above the surface. The clouds are touched by the sails, and 
the earth by the keel. For the sea, in the part where it is 
at rest, does not conceal the sands ; it arises in mountains, 
and all the waters are in waves. Fears conquer the resources 
of art, and the pilot knows not which to break, to which 
wave to give way. 

The discord of the sea comes to then" aid in their dis- 
tress, and billow is not able to throw over the vessel against 
billows ; the resisting wave supports the yielding side, and 
the bark rises upright amid all the winds. They dread 
not the lowly Sason * with its shallows, nor yet the rocky 
shores of curving Thessaly, and the dangerous harbours of 
the Ambracian coast - ; of the summits of rocky Ceraunia 
the sailors are in dread. Now does Caesar believe there to 
be a danger worthy of his destiny. 

" Is it a labour so great," says he, " with the Gods above 
to overwhelm me, whom, sitting in a little bark, they have 
assaulted with seas so vast ? If the glory of my end has 
been granted to the deep, and I am denied to the warfare, 
fearlessly will I receive whatever death, ye Deities, you send 
me. Although the day hurried on by the Fates should cut 
short my mighty exploits, things great enough have I done. 
The nations of the north have I conquered ; hostile arms 
have I subdued with fear ; Home has beheld Magnus second 
to me. The commonalty ordered by me, I have obtained by 
warfare the fasces which were denied unto me. No Roman 
dignity will be wanting to my titles. 

" No one will know this, except thee, Fortune, who alone 

1 The loicly Sason) ver. 650. See the Note to B. ii. 1. 627. 

2 The Ambracian, coast) ver. 652. Ambracia was a town of Epirus, 
situate on the left bank of the river Aracthus, to the north of the Ambracian 
Gulf. It was originally colonized by the Corinthians about B.C. 660. 
Pyrrhus, king of Epirus, made it the capital of his dominions. The Cerau- 
nia, or Acroceraunia, " the heights of thunder," were precipitous rocks of 
the coast of Epirus. 





194 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 665-691. 

art conscious of my wishes, that I, although I go loaded with 
honors and Dictator and Consul, to the Stygian shades, die 
as a private person. There is need, O Gods of heaven, of 
no funereal rites for me ; retain my mangled carcase in the 
midst of the waves ; let tomb and funeral pile be wanting 
to me, so long as I shall be always dreaded and looked for 
by every land." 

Him, having thus said, a tenth wave 1 , wondrous to be said, 
lifts with the frail bark on high ; nor again does it hurl it 
down from the lofty heights of the sea, but the wave bears 
it along, and casts it on dry land, where the narrow shore 
is free from rugged cliffs. At the same moment, the land 
being touched, realms so many, cities so many, and his own 
fortune does heTegain. 

But not so easily did Caesar, now returning 2 , on the fol- 
lowing day deceive his camp and his adherents, as on the 
occasion of his silent flight. Thronging around their general 
the multitude wept, and accosted him with their lamenta- 
tions and not displeasing complaints 3 . " Whither, cruel 
Csesar, has thy rash valour carried thee, or to what fate 
abandoning us, valueless lives, didst thou give thy limbs to 
be scattered by the reluctant storm ? Since the existence and 
the safety of so many nations depend upon this life of thine, 
and the world so great has made thee its head, it is cruelty 
to wish to die. Did no one of thy followers deserve, not to 
be able to be a survivor of thy fate? When the sea was 
hurrying thee along, slothful slumber was in possession of 
our bodies. Alas ! we are ashamed ! This was the cause 
of thy seeking Hesperia ; it seemed cruel to commit any 

1 A tenth icave) ver. 672. It was a notion among the ancients that every 
tenth wave (probably reckoning from the beginning of the storm) was more 
violent than the others. Thus Ovid says, in his Tristia, or Lament, B. i. 
El. 2, 11. 49, 50 : " The wave that is now coming on o'ertops all the others ; 
'tis the one that comes after the ninth and before the eleventh." He also 
refers to the same belief in the Metamorphoses, B. xi. 1. 530. 

2 Did Ccesar, now returning) ver. 678. The meaning is, that having 
landed at Brundisium he returned forthwith to his army in Epirus, but thnt, 
coming ashore in the broad light of day, his return could not be so easily 
concealed from his army as his departure had been. 

3 Not ditpleasing complaints) ver. 681. Inasmuch as they attested their 
affection for him. Appian says that on this occasion some expressed their 
admiration of Cajsar's boldness, while others complained to him aloud that be 
had done what rather befitted a brave soldier than a considerate general. 



B. V. 692-713.] PHARSALIA. 195 

one to a sea so boisterous. The last lot of events is wont 
to precipitate men into doubtful dangers and the headlong 
perils of death. 

" For one now holding the rule of the world to have 
entrusted himself to the sea ! Why thus greatly dost thou 
tempt the Deities? Is this favour and effort of Fortune 
sufficient for the crisis of the war, which has impelled thee 
to our sands ? Has this service of the Deities pleased thee, 
not that thou shouldst be ruler of the world, not chief of 
the state, but fortunate in shipwreck?" Uttering such 
things, the night dispersed, the day with its sunshine came 
upon them, and the wearied deep lulled the swelling waves, 
the winds permitting. 

The captains also l in Hesperia, when they beheld the 
sea weary of waves, and the clearing Boreas ~ rising in the 
heavens to subdue the deep, unmoored the barks, which 
the wind and the right hands, plied with equal time, long 
kept mingled ; and over the wide sea, the ships keeping 
close together, the fleet united, just as a troop on land. But 
relentless night took away from the sailors the steadiness of 
the breeze, and the eyen course of the sails, and threw the 
barks out of their line. 

Thus, Nile, do the cranes, about to drink of thee, the 
winter driving them away, leave the frozen Strymon, and at 
their first flight describe various figures 3 as chance directs 

1 The captains also) ver. 703. Those chiefs of the Caesarian party who 
were at Brundisium, namely, Antony, Gabinius, Posthumius, and Calenus. 

2 The clearing Boreas) ver. 705. This is contrary to Caesar's account, 
who says that they passed over with a southerly wind. He thus relates the 
circumstance of their setting sail, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 26 : " Caesar's 
officers exerting boldness and courage, aided by the instructions of Antony and 
of Funus Calenus, and animated by the soldiers strongly encouraging them, 
and declining no danger for Caesar's safety, having got a southerly wind, 
weighed anchor, and the next day were carried past Apollonia and Dyrrha- 
chium, and being seen from the main land, Quintus Coponius, who commanded 
the Ilhodian fleet at Dyrrhachium, put out of port with his ships ; and when 
they had almost come up with us, in consequence of the breeze dying away, 
the south wind sprang up afresh and rescued us. However, he did not desist 
from his attempt, but hoped by the labour and perseverance of his seamen 
to be able to bear up against the violence of the storm ; and although we 
were carried beyond Dyrrhachium by the violence of the wind, he neverthe- 
less continued to chase us." 

3 Describe various figrires) ver. 713. He alludes to the straggling flight of 
crimes in winter from the banks of the Strymon, in Thrace, towards the 

o 2 



196 P1I.VRSALIA. [u. v. 7H-725. 

them. Afterwards, when the south wind prevailing more on 
high has impelled their spread wings, mixed indiscriminately 
they are crowded into confused masses, and the letter, dis- 
arranged 1 , is destroyed by their wings scattered in all di- 
rections. When first, the day returning, a stronger breeze 
blew upon the ships, aroused at the rising of Phoebus, they 
passed by the shores of Lissus attempted in vain, and 
made for Nymphaeum ;f . Already had the south wind, suc- 
ceeding Boreas, made into a harbour the waves exposed 4 to 
the north. 

The arms of Csesar being collected in strength from every 
side, Magnus, beholding the extreme dangers of the dreadful 
warfare now drawing near his own camp, determined to 

wanner regions of the Nile. The figures described by them in their flight 
are said to have been of the shape of V, A, or L. 

1 And the letter, disarranged) ver. 716. The figures alluded to in the 
last Note. 

8 The shores of Lissus) ver. 719. Lissus, now called Elisso, was a town 
on the const of Epirus, at the mouth of the river Drilon. It was situate on 
a hill, and had a strongly-fortified citadel, which was considered impregnable. 
Caesar, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 26, thus relates the circumstances here 
referred to : " Our men, taking advantage of the favour of fortune, for they 
were still afraid of being attacked by the enemy's fleet, if the wind abated, 
having come near a port called Nymphsum, about three miles beyond Lissus, 
put into it (this port is protected from a south-west wind, but is not secure 
against a south wind) ; and they thought less danger was to be apprehended 
from the storm than from the enemy. But as soon as they were in harbour, 
the south wind, which had blown for two days, by extraordinary good luck 
veered round to the south-west. Here one might observe the sudden turn of 
Fortune. \Ve who, a moment before, were alarmed for ourselves, were 
safely lodged in a very secure harbour; and they who had threatened ruin to 
our fleet were forced to be uneasy on their own account; and thus, by a 
change of circumstances, the storm protected our ships, and damaged the 
Rhodian fleet to such a degree that all their decked ships, sixteen in number, 
foundered without exception, and were wrecked ; and of the prodigious num- 
ber of seamen and soldiers, some lost their lives by being dashed against the 
rocks, others were taken by our men ; but Ca:sar sent them all safe home." 

3 Made for Nympltaeum) ver. 720. Nymphaeum was the name of several 
places. The one here mentioned was a port and Promontory on the coast of 
Illyricum, three Roman miles from Lissus. 

4 The waves exposed) ver. 720. By " undas," literally " waves," the Poet 
means the harbour of Nymphseum. His meaning is that the harbour was 
exposed to the north wind, by means of which Csesar's ships had entered it; 
immediately after which the wind veered to the south, by reason of which 
the ships were secure. Caesar makes the wind to veer from south to south- 
west, Lucan from north to south. 



B. v. 725-752.] THARSALIA. 197 

deposit in safety the charge of wedlock, and to conceal thee, 
Cornelia, removed to Lesbos', afar from the din of cruel 
warfare. Alas ! how greatly does virtuous passion prevail in 
well-regulated minds ! Even thee, Magnus, did love render 
doubtful and anxious as to the result of battles ; thy wife 
alone thou wast unwilling to be subject to the stroke of For- 
tune, beneath which was the world and the destiny of Rome. 

Now do words forsake his mind, made up, and it pleases 
him, putting off what is about to come, to indulge a pleasing 
delay, and to snatch the moment from the Fates. Towards 
the close of the night, the repose, of slumber banished, whife 
Cornelia cherishes in her embrace his breast weighed down 
with cares, and seeks the delightful kisses of her husband 
who turns away ; wondering at his moistened cheeks, and 
smitten with a secret wound, she dares not to arraign Mag- 
nus with weeping. He, sighing, says : 

" Wife, dearer to me than life, not now when tired of 
life, but in joyous times ; the sad day is come, and one 
which both too much and too little we have deferred : now 
is Caesar at hand for battle with all his might. To war 
must we give way ; during which for thee Lesbos will be a 
safe retreat. Forbear making trial of entreaty ; already 
have I denied myself 2 . Thou wilt not have to endure a 
prolonged absence 3 from me. Events will succeed with 
headlong speed; ruin hastening on, the highest interests 
are downward speeding. 'Tis enough to have heard of 
the dangers of Magnus ; and thy love has deceived me, if 
thou canst be witness of the civil war. For I am ashamed 
now, the line of battle drawn up, to have been enjoying 
tranquil slumbers together with my wife, and to arise from 
thy bosom, when the trumpet-call is shaking the distracted 
world. 

1 Removed to Lesbos) ver. 725. Lesbos, now called Metelin, was the 
largest of the islands of the .ZEgean along the coast of Asia Minor. The 
inhabitants were greatly favoured by Pompey, and were restored by him to 
the enjoyment of freedom after the Mithridatic war, in consideration of the 
sufferings they had undergone. 

2 Have / denied myself) ver. 744. He exercises self-denial, as he feels 
anxious to retain her with him in Epirus. 

3 A prolonged absence) ver. 745. " Lor gas" is supposed by some to 
apply to the distance between Lesbos and Thessaly. It is more probable 
however, that it relates to the duration of their separation. 



198 PHARSALIA. [B. v. 752-781. 

"I dread to engage Pompey in civil warfare sorrowing 
with no loss. More safe meantime than nations, and more 
safe than every king, far and wide, and removed afar, the 
fortune of thy husband may not overwhelm thee with all its 
weight. If the Deities shall overthrow my ranks, let the 
better part of me survive ; and let there be for me, if the 
Fates and the blood-stained victor shall overwhelm me, 
whither I may desire to fly." 

In her weakness hardly did she sustain grief so great, 
and her senses fled from her astounded breast. At length, 
with difficulty was she able to utter her sorrowing com- 
plaints : 

" Nothing, Magnus, is left me to say in complaint of the 
destiny of our union and of the Gods of heaven ; death does 
not divide our love, nor the closing torch of the sad funereal 
pile ; but, sent away, by a common and too vulgar lot l am 
I separated from my husband. At the approach of the foe 
let us sever the union of our marriage torch ; let us appease 
thy father-in-law. Has, Magnus, my fidelity been thus ex- 
perienced by thee ? And dost thou believe that anything 
can be more safe to me than to thee? Have we not for 
long depended on one lot ? Dost thou, relentless one, com- 
mand me, absent, to expose my life to lightnings and to 
ruin so mighty? Does my lot seem a tranquil one to thee, 
to be perishing with apprehension, when even now thou art 
entertaining hopes ? As I shall be reluctant to be the slave 
of the wicked, still, by a ready death, I shall follow thee to 
the shades ; until the sad report reaches the regions removed 
afar, I, forsooth, shall be living, the survivor of thee. 

" Add this, that thou dost accustom me to my fate, and, 
in thy cruelty, to endure grief so great. Pardon me con- 
fessing it ; I fear to be able to endure it. But if my prayers 
are realized, and I am heard by the Gods, last of all will thy 
wife know the result of affairs. The rocks will be detaining 
me, full of anxiety, thou being already the conqueror ; and 
I shall be dreading the ship which may be bringing destinies 

1 Too vulgar lot) ver. 765. By the use of the word "plebeia" she pro- 
bably refers to the divorces or separations which were of every-day occur- 
rence among the Roman people. One of the Scholiasts thinks that Cornelia 
alludes to the life of rustics who separate themselves from their wives for 
the purpose of sending them to market or to work iu the fields. 



B. v. 781-807.] PHAKSALIA. 199 

so joyous. Nor will the successes 'of the war, heard of by 
me, end my fears, when, exposed in an undefended place, I 
may be taken by Caesar even in his flight. The shores will 
grow famous through the exile of a famous name, and, the 
wife of Magnus abiding there, who will possibly be ignorant 
of the retreat of Mitylene ' ? This, the last thing do I 
entreat, if thy conquered arms shall leave thee nothing 
more safe than flight, when thou hast entrusted thyself to 
the waves, to any quarter in preference turn thy unlucky 
bark ; on my shores thou wilt be sought for." 

Thus saying, distractedly she leaps forth, the couch 2 
abandoned, and wishes to defer her woes by no delay. In 
her sweet embrace she does not endure to clasp the breast of 
the sorrowing Magnus, nor yet his neck; and the last enjoy- 
ment of love so prolonged passes away; and their own sor- 
rows they hasten on, and neither on withdrawing can endure 
to say, "farewell;" and throughout all their lives no day 
has there been so sad. For other griefs with a mind now 
strengthened by woes, and resolute, did they submit to. 
She falls fainting in her wretchedness, and, received in the 
hands of her attendants, is carried down to the sands of 
the sea, and there prostrates herself, and clings to the very 
shore, and at length is borne to the ship. 

Not thus unhappy 3 did she leave her country and the 
Hesperian harbours, when the arms of ruthless Coesar were 
pressing. The faithful companion of Magnus now goes alone, 
the chieftain left behind, and from Pompey does she fly. 

The next night that came to her was without sleep. Then 
for the first time was her rest chilled and not as usual, alone 

1 Retreat of Mitylene) ver. 786. Mitylene was the chief city of the isle 
of Lesbos, situate on a Promontory, and having two excellent harbours. Its 
foundation was ascribed to the Carians and Pelasgians. 

2 The coiich) ver. 791. "Stratis:" literally " bed-clothes," which consisted 
of blankets or counterpanes called " peristromata," or " peripetasmata." In 
the houses of the wealthy Romans these were of a costly description, and 
generally of a purple colour, and embroiqered with beautiful figures in gold. 
They were called " peripetasmata Attalica," from having been first used at 
the court of King Attains. 

3 Not thus unhappy) ver. 802. From the beginning of this line to the 
end of the Fifth Book is considered by Weise not to have been the compo- 
sition of Lucan, but an addition by some later hand. The use of the word 
" vadit" in 1. 804, of "sibi" in 1. 805, " frigida quies" in 1. 807, and the 
silly remarks in 11. 811, 12, seem to him to justify such a conclusion. 



200 I'll A US ALIA. [B. v. 807-815. 

in her widowed bed, and with no husband pressing her 
unprotected side. How often, overpowered with sleep, with 
deceived hands l did she embrace the empty couch, and, 
forgetful of her flight, seek her husband in the ni^ht! 
For, although the flame in silence pervaded her marrow, 
it pleased her not to extend her body over all the bed ; the 
one part of the couch :1 was kept. 

She was afraid of losing Pompey ; but the Gods above 
did not ordain things so joyous. The hour was pressing 
011 which was to restore Magnus to her in her wretched- 
ness. 

1 With deceived hands) ver. 809. There is a similar passage in the 
Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. xi. 1. 674, where Alcyone, on being sepa- 
rated from Ceyx, her husband, " groans aloud and moves her arms in her 
sleep, and, catching at his body, grasps the air." 

3 Although the flame) ver. 811. The meaning of this passage, which has 
been censured by Weise as either spurious or corrupt, seems to be, that in 
her sleep she deceived herself by stretching out her arms to touch her hus- 
band, for, although penetrated by grief, from habit and from a sort of impres- 
sion that her husband was still with her, she kept to her own side of the 
couch when surrendering herself to sleep. 

3 The one part of the concA.) ver. 813. She was afraid, when laying her- 
self on her couch, to act as though she were fully certain of the loss of Pom- 
pey ; and was, unconsciously, reluctant to acknowledge to herself the full ex- 
tent of her bereavement. 



201 
BOOK THE SIXTH. 

CONTENTS. 

Caesar, being unable to bring Pompey to a battle, marches to seize Dyrr- 
hachium, 1-14. Pompey intercepts him on his march, 15-18. The 
situation of the city is described, 19-28. Caesar surrounds the city 
and the forces of Pompey with vast outworks, 29-63. Pompey sal- 
lies forth to interrupt the works, 64-79. A famine and pestilence arise 
in his army, 80-105. The army of Caesar also suffers from famine, 106- 
117. Pompey attempts to break through the outworks, 118-124. He is 
at first successful in his attempts, 125-139. But is driven back by Scaeva, 
140-144. Whose praises are sung by the Poet, 145-148. Scseva exhorts 
his comrades, 149-165. While bravely fighting, he is pierced by an 
arrow, 166-227. He requests to be carried to the camp of Pompey, 228- 
235. Deceived by his stratagem, Aulus is slain by him, 235-239. The 
words of Scseva, 240-246. His wounds are described, and his praises de- 
scanted upon, 247-262. Pompey attacks the outworks nearer to the sea, 
263-278. Caesar prepares to renew the engagement, 278-289. At the 
approach of Pompey, the troops of Caesar are in alarm, 290-299. Pompey 
neglects to follow up his successes, 299313. Caesar repairs to Thessaly, 
and is followed by Pompey, 314-332. The situation of Thessaly is 
described, 333-412. Both sides pitch their camps, the troops anxiously 
awaiting the event, 413-419. Sextus, the son of Pompey, is urged by 
fear to enquire into the destinies of futurity by means of magic arts, 420- 
434. The Thessalian incantations are described, 434-506. Erictho, a 
Thcssalian enchantress, and her rites, are described, 507-569. Sextus 
repairs to her at night, 570-588. He addresses her, and requests her to 
disclose to him the future, 589-603. She promises him that she will do 
so, 604-623. A dead body is chosen for her to restore to life, and is 
dragged to her cave, 624-641. The cave of Erictho is described, 642-653. 
Commencing her incantations, she reproaches the attendants of Sextus, 
654 666. By her incantations and magic skill she raises the dead body 
to life, 667-761. She requests it to disclose the future, 762-774. It 
discloses the woes of Rome, and of the adherents of Pompey in particular, 
775-820. The body is then burned, and Sextus returns to the camp, 
820-830. 

AFTER the chieftains 1 , now nearing each other with an in- 
tention of fighting, had pitched their camps on the hills, 
and arms were brought hand to hand, and the Gods be- 

1 After the chieftains) ver. 1. The events which happened after they left 
the camps at the river Apsus (B. v. 1. 481), and which are here omitted, are 
thus related by Caesar, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 30 : " Caesar and Pom- 
pey received intelligence [of the arrival of Antony] almost at the same time; 



202 PHARSALIA. [u. vi. 3-15. 

held their equals, Coesar scorned to take all the towns of 
the Greeks, and now refused to be indebted to the Fates for 
any prosperous warfare except against his son-in-law. In 
all his prayers he asks for the hour so fatal to the world, 
that is to bring everything to a crisis. The die of destiny 
that is to sink the head of the one or the other alone pleases 
him. Three times on the hills he draws out all his troops l 
and his standards that threaten battle, testifying that he is 
never wanting to the downfall of Latium. 

When he beholds that his son-in-law can be aroused by 
no alarms to battle, but confides in his close entrench- 
ments, he moves his standards, and, sheltered by a path 
through fields o'erspread with woods, with headlong haste 
he marches to seize the towers of Dyrrhachium 2 . This 
march Magnus forestalls by following the sea-line, and 

for they had seen the ships sail past Apollonia and Dyrrhachium. They 
directed their march after them by land j but at first they were ignorant to 
what part they had been carried ; but when they were informed of it, they 
each adopted a different plan : Caesar, to form a junction with Antony as 
soon as possible ; Pompey, to oppose Antony's forces on their march to 
Caesar, and, if possible, to fall upon them unexpectedly from ambush ; and 
the same day they both led out their armies from their winter encampment 
along the river Apsus, Pompey secretly by night, Caesar openly by day. 
But Caesar had to march a longer distance round, along the river, to find a 
ford. Pompey's route being clear, because he was not obliged to cross 
the river, he advanced rapidly and by forced marches, against Antony, and 
being informed of his approach, chose a convenient situation, where he posted 
his forces ; and kept his men close within camp and forbade fires to be 
kindled, that his arrival might be the more secret. An account of this was 
immediately carried to Antony by the Greeks. He dispatched messengers 
to Cajsar and confined himself in his camp, for one day. The next day 
Caesar came up with him. On learning his arrival, Pompey, to prevent his 
being hemmed in between two armies, quitted his position, and moved with 
all his forces to Asparagium, in the territory of Dyrrhachium, and there en- 
camped in a convenient situation." 

1 Draws out all fiis troops) ver. 8. These circumstances are thus related 
by Caesar in the Civil War, 13. iii. c. 41 : " As soon as Caesar heard that 
Pompey was at Asparagium, he set out for that place with his army, and 
having taken the capital of the Parthenians on his march, where there was 
a garrison of Pompey's, he reached Pompey in Macedonia on the third day, 
and encamped beside him ; and on the day following, having drawn out all 
his forces before his camp, he offered Pompey battle. But perceiving that 
he kept within his trenches he led his army back to the camp, and thought 
about pursuing some other plan." 

3 DyrrfMchium) ver. 14. This is the same city which is called Epidarnnai 
in the Second Book, 1. 264. See the Note to that passage. 



B. vi. 10-31.] PHAESALIA. 203 

the hill -which the native Taulantian 1 calls Petra he pitches 
upon with his camp 2 , and guards the walls 3 of Ephyre 4 , 
defending a city safe even in its towers alone 5 . No work 
of the ancients or bulwark erected defends this city, or 
human labour, liable, though it should elevate on high, to 
yield either to wars or to years that move everything ; but 
it has fortifications able to be shaken by no iron, the nature 
and the locality of the spot. For, enclosed on every side 
by the deep sea and by rocks that discharge the waves, 
it owes to a small hill that it is not an island. Rocks 
terrible to ships support the walls; and when the raging 
Ionian sea is raised by the boisterous south wind, the 
ocean shakes temples and houses, and sends its foam to 
their summits. 

Hither did lawless hopes attract the mind of Csesar, 
greedy of the warfare, that he might surround the 

1 The native Taulantian) ver. 16. The Taulantii were a people of 
Illyria in the vicinity of Epidamnus or Dyrrhachium. Glaucias, one of their 
most powerful kings, waged war against Alexander the Great. 

2 He pitches upon with his camp) ver. 15. From the present passage it 
would appear that Pompey was the first to arrive at Dyrrhachium. Caesar, 
however, says that he himself was the first to arrive, and that Pompsy was 
cut off from the city. " Pompey at first, not knowing Caesar's design, be- 
cause he imagined he had taken a route in a different direction from 
that country, thought that the scarcity of provisions had obliged him to 
shift his quarters ; but having afterwards got true intelligence from his 
scouts, he decamped the day following, hoping to prevent him by taking a 
shorter road by the sea shore ; which Caesar suspecting might happen, en- 
couraged his troops to submit cheerfully to the fatigue, and having halted a 
very small part of the night, he arrived early in the morning at Dyrrhachium, 
when the van of Pompey's army was visible at a distance, and there he en- 
camped." Civil War, B. iii. c. 41. 

3 And guards Uie walls) ver. 16. Caesar says, in the Civil War, B. iii. 
c. 42 : " Pompey, being cut off from Dyrrhachium, as he was unable to effect 
his purpose, took a new resolution, and entrenched himself strongly on a 
rising ground which is called Petra, where ships of a small size can come in, 
and be sheltered from some winds. Here he ordered a part of his gallies to 
attend him, and corn and provisions to be brought from Asia, and from all 
the countries of which he kept possession." 

4 Of JEphyre) ver. 17. The walls of Dyrrhachium are called " Ephyrean" 
because it was supposed to have been colonized from Corcyra, which was 
originally a Corinthian colony ; and the city of Corinth was called Ephyre, 
from the nymph Ephyra, the daughter of Oceanus and Tethys. 

5 Kafe even in its towers alone) ver. 18. He means to say that it was 
sufficiently strong in its natural position and fortifications to resist an enemy 
without the aid of troops. 



204 THARSAL1A. [a vi. 31-50. 

enemy 1 unawares dispersed on the vast hills, with bul- 
warks of intrenchments described afar. The ground he 
surveys with his eyes; and not content with frail turf alone 
to construct the walls so suddenly raised, he carries across 
vast rocks, and stones dug up from quarries, and the houses 
of the Greeks, and the walls torn asunder. A wall is built 
up, which not the ruthless battering-ram, nor any engine 
of destructive warfare, is able to throw down. Mountains 
are broken down, and Caesar draws the work on a level 
right through lofty hills, and he opens fosses, and disposes 
towered castles on the highest ridges, and with a great 
circuit enclosing boundaries, thickets, and woody lonesome 
spots, and forests and wild beasts, with a vast net he shuts 
them in. 

Fields are not wanting, pastures are not wanting to Mag- 
nus, and, surrounded by the bulwarks of Ctesor, he shifts 
his camp at pleasure'-. Rivers so many rising there, and 
ceasing there, exhaust their course ; and that he may revisit 
the most distant of the works, Caesar, wearied, abides in 
the midst of the fields. Now let ancient story raise the 
Ilian walls 3 , and ascribe them to the Gods; let the flying 

1 That lie might surround tlte enemy) ver. 30. Caesar thus relates these 
operations in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 43 : " Caesar, on being informed of 
these matters, pursued measures suggested by the nature of the country. 
For around Pompey's camp there were several high and rugged hills. 
These he first of nil occupied with guards, and raised strong forts on them. 
Then drawing a fortification from one fort to the other, as the nature of 
each position allowed, he began to draw a line of circumvallation around 
Pompey ; and with these views, as he had but a small quantity of corn, 
and Pompey was strong in cavalry, that he might furnish his army with 
corn and other necessaries from all sides with less danger; secondly, to 
prevent Pompey from foraging, and thereby render his horse ineffectual in 
the operations of the war ; and thirdly, to lessen his reputation, on which 
he saw he depended greatly among foreign nations, when the report should 
Lave spread throughout the world, that he was blockaded by Caesar and 
dared not hazard a battle." 

8 He thifts his camp at pleasure) ver. 44. " Mutat ;" literally " changes ;" 
meaning that he has the power or opportunity to change his camp, although 
surrounded by Caasar's lines ; in allusion to the vast extent of space enclosed 
thereby. 

3 Ancient story raise tlte Ilian vails) ver. 48. He alludes to the alleged 
extent of the walls of Ilium or Troy, which were said to be forty miles in 
circumference, and to have been built by the hands of Apollo and Neptune 
for King Laomedon. 



B. vi. 50-60.] PHARSALIA. 205 

Parthians admire the walls of Babylon, surrounded with 
frail pottery 1 . Lo, as much as Tigris, as much as swift 
Orontes surrounds 2 , as much as suffices for their realms 
to the Assyrian nations in the eastern world, does a work, 
suddenly formed and hurried on amid the tumult of warfare, 
enclose. There perish labours as mighty 3 . 

Hands thus many had been able to unite Sestos to 
Abyclos 4 , and, by heaping earth into it to exclude the sea 
of Phryxus', or to sever Ephyre from the wide realms of 
Pelops, and to cut short for shipping the circumnavigation 
of the lengthy Malea 7 , or to change any spot of the world, 

1 Walls of Babylon, surrounded with frail pottery) ver. 50. He alludes 
to the brick-built walls of Babylon ; which city, though in a ruinous state, 
was, in the Poet's day, in the hands of the Parthians. In the time of Nebu- 
chadnezzar these walls surrounding the city, which was in form of a square, 
were forty-eight miles in extent, and two hundred cubits high, and fifty thick. 
They were built of burnt brick, while some of the buildings in the city 
were only constructed with bricks sun-dried and cemented with bitumen or 
mortar. Ovid, in the Metamorphoses, B. iv. 1. 68, speaks of the "coctiles 
muri," or " brick-built walls," of Babylon. 

* As muck as swift Orontes surrounds) ver. 51. The meaning is, "as 
much ground as the Tigris (into which the Euphrates discharges itself) sur- 
rounds at Babylon, as much as the Orontes surrounds at Antioch, and as 
much as is required for the royal city of Nineveh, so much does Caesar on a 
sudden emergency surround with lines of circumvallation." These lines were 
fifteen miles in circumference. 

3 There perish labours as mighty) ver. 54. "Periere" may either mean 
that these lines were thrown away as failing in their object of hemming in 
Pompey, or that they were soon destroyed in the sallies of Pompey's 
troops. 

4 Unite Sestos to Abydos) ver. 55. He alludes to the bridges which 
Xerxes constructed across the Hellespont from Sestos to Abydos. See the 
Second Book, 1. 674, and the Note to the passage. 

* To exclude the sea of Phryxus) ver. 56. In allusion to Xerxes building 
up large mounds of earth in the Hellespont. Phryxus was the brother of 
Helle, who gave her name to the Hellespont. See the Fourth Book, J. 57, 
and the Note to the passage. 

6 To cut short for shipping) ver. 57. He says that it would have been 
about an equal labour to cut off Corinth, or Ephyre, from the Peloponnesus, 
by cutting through the Isthmus. 

7 Circumnavigation of the lengthy Malea} ver. 58. Malea was a Promontory 
on the south of Laconia, extending many miles into the sea, the passage round 
which was much dreaded by sailors. By the use of the word " donare," 
meaning " to save the passage of," he probably means by cutting through the 
promontory where it commences to project, and thus save the necessity of 
going round it. Famaby, however, takes the passage to be only an ampli- 
fication of the last line, and to mean that the result of cutting through the 



206 PHABSALIA. [B. vi. 60-73. 

although Nature should forbid it, for the better. The quar- 
ters of the warfare are contracted ; here is nourished blood 
destined to flow in all lands ; here both the Thessalian and 
the Libyan slaughters 1 are kept in store. The civil fury 
rages on a narrow slip of sand. 

First indeed, on rising, the structure of the works escapes 
Porapey ; just as he who, safe in the fields of mid Sicily, 
knows not that ravening Pelorus is barking 2 ; or as, when 
roaming Tethys and the Rutupian shores : * are raging, the 
waves aroused escape the ears of the Caledonian Britons. 
When first he beholds the earth enclosed with a vast 
rampart, he himself also leading forth his troops 4 from 
secure Petra scatters them over the different hills, that he 
may weaken the arms of Ceesar, and extend his line, as he 
hems him hi, with his soldiers spread far and wide ; 
and as much of the land enclosed in the trenches does he 

Isthmus of Corinth would be to save sailors the necessity of going round 
the Peloponnesus and rounding the Malean promontory. 

1 Both, the Thessalian and the Libyan slaughters) ver. 62. " Here in this 
space are enclosed persons who are doomed to fall, some at Thessalian Phar- 
salia, some at African Munda." 

2 Knows not that ravening Pelorus is barking) ver. 66. Just as the 
person who lives in the interior of Sicily does not hear the howling of the 
whirlpools of Scylla and Charybdis, which are in the vicinity of Pelorus, a 
Promontory of that island. 

3 And the Rutupian shores) ver. 67. Rutupiae, or Rutupac, was a Roman 
town on the coast of Kent, supposed to have been the present Richborough. 
It was a place of transit for Haul, and was famed for the goodness of its 
oysters, which were much prized by the Roman epicures. The Poet's mean- 
ing is, "just as the native of Caledonia (now Scotland) does not hear the 
roaring of the ocean on the Rutupian shore (the coast of Kent)." 

4 Leading forth his troops) ver. 71. These operations on the part of 
Pompey are thus fully explained in Csesar's narrative of the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 44 : " Nothing was left to Pompey but to adopt the last resource, 
namely, to possess himself of as many hills as he could, and cover as great an 
extent of country as possible with his troops, and divide Caesar's forces as much 
as possible ; and so it happened ; for having raised twenty-four forts, and taken 
in a compass of fifteen miles, he got forage in this space, and within this circuit 
there were several fields lately sown, in which the cattle might feed in the 
meantime. And as our men, who had completed their works by drawing lines 
of communication from one fort to another, were afraid that Pompey '3 men 
would sally out from some part and attack us on the rear ; so the enemy were 
making a continued fortification in a circuit within ours, to prevent us from 
breaking in on any side, or surrounding them in the rear. But they com- 
pleted their wokrs first ; both because they had a greater number of men, and 
because they had a smaller compass to enclose.'' 



B. TI. 73-88.] PHARSALIA. 207 

claim for himself, as little Aricia of the grove, consecrated 
to Diana of Mycene, is distant from lofty Rome ' ; and the 
distance at which 3 Tiber, gliding by Rome, descends into 
the sea, if it were not to wind in its course. 

No trumpet-call re-echoes 3 , and, contrary to orders, the 
darts roam ; and full oft, while the arm tries the javelin, is 
a crime committed. Greater anxieties deter the chieftains 
from engaging in arms. Pompey care deters by reason of 
the land being exhausted for affording fodder, which the 
horseman in his course has trodden down, and with 
quickened steps the horny hoof has beaten down the shoot- 
ing field. The warlike charger wearied in the fields cropped 
short, while the full racks are holding the sedge that has 
been brought 4 , falls dying, requiring for his mouth fresh 
grass, and cuts short with faltering knees the exercises of 
the ring in the midst of them. 

While consumption wastes their bodies 5 and relaxes their 

1 Aricia is distant from lofty Rome) ver. 75. He says that the extent 
of ground which Pompey enclosed within his lines was the same as the dis- 
tance from Aricia to Home ; namely, about sixteen miles. In speaking of 
the Mycenaean Diana, he alludes to the worship of Diana, which was said 
to have been brought from Tauris to Aricia by Iphigenia and Orestes, the 
children of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae. See the Third Book, 1. 86, and 
the Note to that passage. 

2 And the distance at which) ver. 76. "Modo" signifies "measure" or 
" distance " here. His meaning is, that the extent is the same as that of the 
Tiber would be from Rome to Ostia, where it discharges itself into the sea, 
if it flowed in a straight line. This can hardly be correct, for Ostia was 
generally said to be but fourteen miles from Home. 

3 No trumpet call re-echoes) ver. 78. " When Caesar attempted to gain 
any place, though Pompey had resolved not to oppose him with his whole force, 
or to come to a general engagement ; yet he detached archers and slingers, 
with which his army abounded, and several of our men were wounded and 
were filled with great dread of the arrows." Civil War, B. iii. 1. 46. 

* The sedge that has been "brought) ver. 85. " Culmos " here signifies, 
according to some, " hay," or else " straw," while others take it to mean 
" sedge." The passage has caused considerable discussion, but its meaning 
clearly is, that although the racks are full of hay, or straw, or sedge, as the 
case may be, the horses pine away for want of fresh grass. 

4 While consumption wastes their bodies) ver. 88. These circumstances 
are thus alluded to in Caesar's narrative of the Civil War, B. iii. c. 49 : 
" Caesar's troops were often told by deserters, that they could scarcely main- 
tain their horses, and that their other cattle were dead ; that they them- 
selves were not in good health, from their confinement within so narrow a 
compass, from the noisome smell, the number of carcases, and the constant 



208 PHARSALIA. [B. vi. 88-106. 

limbs, the close atmosphere contracts the contagion of the 
flouting pestilence in a dense cloud. With such an exhala- 
tion does Nesis 1 send forth the Stygian air from its clouded 
rocks, and the caves of the deadly Typhon- putt' forth his 
rage. Thence do the multitudes perish, and the water, 
more ready than the air to contract all infection, hardens 
the entrails with mud collecting there. Now the blackened 
skin grows hard, and bursts the distended eyes : fiery 
throughout the features 11 , and glowing with erysipelas tin- 
disease breaks out, and the weary head refuses to support 
itself. Now more and more suddenly does destiny sweep 
away everything, nor do intervening diseases separate life 
and death, but the weakness comes on with death ; and by 
the multitude of the perishing is the pestilence increased, 
while the bodies are lying unburied, mingled with the living. 
For to throw the wretched citizens outside of the tents is 
their burial. Still, these woes, the sea at their backs, and 
the air stirred by the north winds, and the sea-shore and the 
ships filled with foreign harvests, relieve 4 . 

But ranging upon the expansive hills the enemy is not 

fatigue to them, being men unaccustomed to work, and labouring under a 
great want of water." 

1 With such an exhalation does Nesis) ver. 90. Nesis, now called " Nisita," 
is a small island on the coast of Campania, not far from Puteoli. It was a 
favorite residence of some of the Roman nobles. The elder Pliny speaks of 
it as in certain places emitting fetid vapours, probably by reason of its vol- 
canic origin. Cicero, Seneca, and Statius also make mention of it. 

2 The caves of (he deadly Typhon) ver. 92. He alludes to the sul- 
phureous vapours of the isle of Inarime, beneath which the giant Typhoeus, 
or Typhon, was said to be buried. It is mentioned in the Fifth Book, 
1. 101 ; see the Note to that passage. 

3 Fiery throughout the features) ver. 96. They were attacked with 
erysipelas, or Saint Anthony's fire, which the Romans called the " Sacer 
niorbus," or "Sacred disease." Celsus mentions this malady as a fore- 
runner of the plague. Some authorities, however, consider ' sacer morbus" 
to mean " epilepsy." 

* Filled with foreign harvests, relieve) ver. 105. Probably because, as 
one of the Scholiasts says, that which grew on the spot was tainted with 
the plague. These supplies are thus referred to in the Civil War, B. iii. 
c. 47 : " The usual design of a siege is to cut off the enemy's supplies. 
On the contrary, Caesar, with an inferior force, was enclosing troops sound 
and unhurt, and who had abundance of all things. For there arrived every 
day a prodigious number of ships, which brought them provisions. Nor 
could the wind blow from any quarter that would not be favourable to some 
of them." 



B. vi. 107-127.] PHARSALIA. 209 

distressed by pent-up air or stagnant water ; but he endures 
cruel famine, as though surrounded in strict siege. The 
blades not as yet rising to a crop, the wretched multitude 
he sees falling down ' to the food of cattle, and gnawing 
the shrubs, and spoiling the grove of its leaves, ami 
tearing from unknown roots- doubtful herbs that threaten 
death. Whatever they are able to soften with flames, what- 
ever to pull asunder by biting, and whatever to put into 
their stomachs through their chafed throats, that they devour, 
and the soldiers tearing asunder many a thing before this 
unknown to human tables, still besiege a well-fed foe. 

When first, the barriers burst, it pleased Pompey to escape, 
and to open to himself all lands, he did not choose for 
himself the obscure hours of stealthy night, and he disdained 
a march stolen by theft, the arms of his father-in-law delay- 
ing ; with ruin brought upon him he sought to come forth, 
and, the trenches attacked, to break down the towers, and 
amid all his swords, and where by slaughter a way must be 
made. However, a part of the entrenchment close at hand 
seems fit, which they call the tower of Minutius ', and a 
shrubbery rough with trees thick set conceals. Hither, be- 

1 Sees falling down) ver. 110. " Cecidisse ;" falling flat on tho ground, 
after the manner of cattle. This passage hardly corresponds with what 
we learn from Caesar, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 49 : " But Csesar's 
army enjoyed perfect health and abundance of water, and had plenty 
of all sorts of provision, except corn ; and they had a prospect of better 
times approaching, and saw greater hopes laid before them by the ripening 
of the grain." Caesar, however, acknowledges, in c. 47, that, " having 
consumed all the corn far and near, he was in very great distress, but his 
soldiers bore all with uncommon patience." 

' And tearing from unknown roots) ver. 113. He probably refers to 
the same root which is mentioned by Caesar, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 48 : 
" There was a kind of root called ' chara,' discovered by the troops which 
served under Valerius. This they mixed up with milk, and it greatly con- 
tributed to relieve their want. They made it into a sort of bread. Having 
great plenty of it, loaves made thereof, when Pompey 's men upbraided ours 
with want, they frequently threw among them, to damp their hopes." It was 
on this occasion that Pompey, on seeing the loaves, exclaimed that surely he 
must be fighting with wild beasts. 

3 They call the tower of Minutius) ver. 126. Appian seems to consider 
this Minutius as the same person with the centurion Scaeva, whose exploits 
are afterwards recounted by the Poet, and whose shield Caesar speaks of 
as being pierced in two hundred and thirty places, while Appian mentions a 
hundred and twenty arrows as sticking in it. They 'hardly, however, seem 
to have been the same persons, as Suetonius calls the latter Cassius Scaeva. 

P 



210 PHAKSALIA. [& vi. 127-151. 

trayed by no dust, he speeds his band, and suddenly comes 
to the walls. At the same moment so many Latian birds 
shine from the plain 1 , so many trumpets sound. 

That victory might not be owing anything to the sword, 
fear had stricken the astounded foe. What valour alone 
could effect, slain they lay, on the spot where they should 
be standing; those to endure the wounds were now want- 
ing, and the cloud that bore darts so many was of no avail. 
Then did the hurled torches roll down pitchy fires ; then did 
the shaken towers nod and threaten their fall ; the bulwark 
groaned at the frequent blows of the oak battered against 
it. Now over the heights of the lofty entrenchment had 
Pompey's eagles gone forth ; now was the rule of the world 
open to him. That place which not with a thousand troops 
together, nor with the whole force of Ccesar, Fortune had 
been able to take away, a single man snatched from the 
victors and forbade to be captured ; and, himself wielding 
arms, and not yet laid prostrate, he denied that Magnus 
was the conqueror. 

Scffiva was the name of the hero ; he had served in the 
ranks of the camp before the fierce nations of the Rhone '-' ; 
there, amid much bloodshed, promoted in the lengthened 
rank, he wielded the Latian vine 1 ; ready for all daring 4 , 
and one who knew not in civil warfare how great cri- 
minality is valour. He, when, the war now left behind, 
he beheld his companions seeking the safety of flight, 
said : 

" Whither does an unduteous fear 5 drive you and one un- 

1 So many Latian birds shine from tlte plain.) ver. 129. He alludes to 
the eagles or standards of the legions. 

* Before tiie fierce nations of tJie Rhone) ver. 144. He means that Scaeva 
had served as a common soldier in Caesar's army, in the wars with the 
Gauls, during which he had been promoted to the rank of centurion. 

3 He melded the Latian vine) ver. 146. A vine sapling was one of the 
badges of office of the centurion, who carried it for the purpose of punishing 
negligent or disobedient soldiers. " Longo ordine," the " lengthened rank," 
probably refers to the troop of a hundred men which was under his command. 

4 Ready for all daring) ver. 147. " Pronus ad omne nefas." By the 
use of the word " nefas " the Poet implies, as he says in the next line, that 
military valour exerted in civil war is no better than criminality. 

* Whither does an unduteous fear) ver. 150. Caesar thus refers to the ex- 
ploits of Scaeva on this occasion, in the Civil "War, 13. iii. c. 53 : " In the 
shield of the centurion Scaeva, which was brought to Caesar, were counted 



B. vi. 1 51 - 1 78.] PH ARS ALT A. 21 1 

known to all the amis of Caesar? base slaves, servile 
beasts ', do you, without bloodshed, turn your backs upon 
death? Are you not ashamed to be wanting in the heap 
of heroes, and to be sought in vain for the tomb among the 
carcases ? Will you not, youths, through anger at least, duty 
set aside, come to a stand ? Out of all, through whom the 
enemy might sally forth, have we been chosen. With cost 
of no little blood to Magnus shall this day pass. More 
happily before the face of Csesar could I seek the shades. 
Him as a Avitness Fortune has denied; Pompey praising 
me, I shall fall. Break their weapons by opposing your 
breasts, and with your throats blunt the sword. Now 
does the dust reach him from afar, and the sound of the 
ruin, and the crash has broken upon the unsuspecting ears 
of Coesar. We conquer, companions ; he will come to 
avenge these towers while we die." 

That voice arouses fury as great as the trumpet-call, not 
at the first signal, inflames ; and wondering at the hero, 
and eager to behold, the youths follow him to know whe- 
ther valour, exceeded in numbers and in position, can give 
anything more than death. On the falling rampart he takes 
his stand, and first of all rolls down carcases from the tower 
full of them, and overwhelms the foes with dead bodies as they 
come on ; the whole of the ruins, too, afford weapons to the 
hero ; both wood, and heavy masses, and himself does he 
threaten to the foe 2 . Now with stakes, now with a sturdy 
pole, he thrusts down opposing breasts from the walls, 
and with the sword he cuts off the hands that cling to 
the upper parts of the rampart ; heads and bones he 
dashes to pieces with stones, and knocks out brains use- 
two hundred and thirty holes. In reward for this man s services, hoth to 
himself and the public, Csesar presented him with a reward in money, and 
declared him promoted from being eighth to first centurion. For it ap- 
peared that the fort had been in a great measure preserved by his exertions ; 
and he afterwards very amply rewarded the cohorts with double pay, corn, 
clothing, and other military honors." It is to be regretted that the account 
of the commencement of this attack by the troops of Pompey is lost in the 
narrative of Caesar. 

7 base slaves, servile beasb) ver. 1 52. " famuli turpes, servum pecus, 
absque cruore." This line is universally considered to be spurious. 

8 And himself does lie threaten to the foe) ver. 173. " Seque ipse 
minntur," meaning that he threatens that he himself will leap down upon 
them. 

p 2 



212 PHARSALIA. [B. vi. 178-201. 

lessly defended by a frail construction , of another the flame 
sets on fire the hair and the cheeks; their eyes burning, the 
fires crackle. 

As soon as, the heap increasing, the carcases made the 
wall level with the ground, a leap brought him down and 
threw him upon their arms in the midst of the troops, not 
less nimble than that which hurries the swift leopard on the 
tops of the hunting spears. Then, compressed amid the 
dense masses and hemmed in by all the war, whatever foe 
he looks upon he conquers. And now, the point of the 
sword of Scfeva, blunted and through clotted blood no 
longer sharp, bruises the smitten foe, and wounds him not 1 . 
The sword loses its use, and breaks limbs without a wound-. 
Him does the entire mass aim at, at him do all the wea- 
pons aim; no hand is unerring, no javelin not fortunately 
aimed, and Fortune beholds a new pair of combatants 
meeting together, an army and a man. The stout shield 
resounds with frequent blows, and the compressed fragments 
of the hollow helmet bruise his temples ; nor does anything 
now protect 1 * his exposed vitals, except the darts that pro- 
trude on the surface of his bones. 

Why now, madmen, with javelins and light arrows do 
you waste wounds that will never attach to the vital parts ? 
Let either the wild-fire 4 hvfrled from the twisted cords over- 
whelm him, or masses of vast stone torn from the walls ; let 
the battering-ram with its iron head, and the balista remove 
him from the threshold of the gate. He stands, no frail wall 

1 And wounds him not) ver. 187. The inelegant repetition of "frangit" 
in the next line, which is also found in this, shows that most probably one 
of them is spurious. 

2 Breaks limbs iritliout a wound) ver. 188. His word was so blunted 
that it would no longer pierce and make wounds, but by the force of the 
blow broke the limb it struck. 

3 Nor does anyUdng now protect) ver. 194. The meaning of this piece 
of bombast seems to be that the weapons of the enemy, sticking in his body 
in nil directions, supply the place of his armour, which, broken to pieces, 
now leaves his body exposed. One of the Scholiasts suggests that the 
meaning is that his vitals are now exposed, but are prevented from falling 
out by reason of the darts pinning his flesh to his bones. 

4 Let eiilier the wild-fire) ver. 198. As to the "phalarica" see the 
Third Book, 1. 681, and the Note to the passage. The "tortiles nervi" are 
the cords used to give impetus to the balista, which was used to discharge 
the phalarica. 



B. vi. 201 222.] PHAESALIA. 213 

for Caesar's cause, and he withstands Pompey. Now he no 
longer covers his breast with amis, and, fearing to trust his 
shield and to be inactive with the left hand, -or to live by 
his own remissness, alone he submits to the wounds so 
many of the warfare, and, bearing a dense thicket of darts 
on his breast, with now flagging steps he chooses an enemy 
on whom to fall. 

Like u-as he to the monsters of the deep 1 . Thus the 
beast of the Libyan land, thus the Libyan elephant, 
overwhelmed by dense arms, breaks every missile as it 
bounds off from his rough back, and moving his skin 
shakes forth the darts that stick there ; his entrails lie safe 
concealed within, and without blood do the darts stand in 
the pierced wild beast ; wounds made by arrows so many, 
by javelins so many, suffice not for a single death. Behold ! 
afar, a Gortynian shaft is aimed against Sca3va by a Dictcean 
hand'-, which, more unerring than all expectation, descends 
upon his head and into the ball of the left eye. He tears 
away the impediment of the weapon and the ligaments of 
the nerves, fearlessly plucking forth the arrow fastened in 
the eye-ball hanging to it, and tramples upon the weapon 
together with his own eye. 

Not otherwise does the Pannonian she-bear 3 , more in- 
furiate after a wound, when the Libyan has hurled the javelin 
retained by the slender thong 4 , wheel herself round upon the 

1 Like u-as he to the monsters of the deep) ver. 207. This is most probably 
a spurious line, from the repetition of part of it in the next. " Par pelagi 
monstris" is supposed by Farnaby to mean, that he acts as the whale does in 
rushing upon a ship and sinking it with its weight. This, if connected with 
what precedes, seems to be the right sense of the passage. The Scholiast Sul- 
pitius, however, thinks that it alludes to the circumstance of trees being sup- 
posed to grow on the backs of whales, which cause them to resemble islands 
and rocks : a meaning which may have possibly been intended if taken in 
connection with what follows. 

2 A Gortynian shaft is aimed against Scceva ly a Dictcean ha7id) ver. 214. 
Gortyna or Gortyn was one of the most ancient cities of Crete, situate on the 
river Lethaeus. It was the second city of the island, and inferior only to 
Cnossus ; and under the dominion of the Romans became the capital. The 
Cretans were renowned for their skill in the use of the bow. 

3 Pannonian she-bear) ver. 220. Pannonia was one of the Roman 
provinces, embracing the eastern part of the present Austria, Styria, Carin- 
thia, Carniola, the whole of Hungary between the Danube and the Save, 
Slavonia, and a part of Croatia and Bosnia. 

4 Has hurled the javelin retained by the slender thong) ver. 221. "Parva 



2U PHARSALIA. [a VL 222-241. 

wound ', and infuriate seek the dart she has received, and 
run round after the weapon as it flies together with herself-. 
His fury has now destroyed his features 11 , with the bloody 
stream his face stands disfigured ; a joyous shout of the con- 
querors re-echoes to the sky ; a wound beheld on Caesar 
would not have caused greater joyousness to the men by 
reason of a little blood. He, concealing the pangs deeply 
seated in his mind, with a mild air, and, fury from his 
features entirely removed, says : 

" Spare me, fellow-citizens ; far hence avert the war. 
Wounds now will not contribute to my death ; that requires 
not weapons thrust in, but rather torn away from my 
breast. Lift me up, and alive remove me to the camp of 
Magnus ; this do for your own general ; let Scaeva be 
rather an instance of Ctesar deserted 4 , than of a glorious 
death." 

The unhappy Aulus believed these deceitful words, and 
did not see him holding his sword with the point upright ; 
and, about to bear away both the body of the prisoner 
and his arms, he received his lightning blade in the middle 
of his throat. His valour waxed hot, and by one slaughter 
refreshed, he said : 

amentavit habena." The spears of the ancients, both those used in war and 
in the chase, often had a thong of feather tied to the middle of the shaft, 
which was called iyxiiKn by the Greeks, and by the Romans "amentum,'' 
and was of assistance in throwing the spear. It is not known how the 
"amentum" added either to the force or the correctness of the aim in the 
use of the spear ; but it has been suggested that it was through imparting 
volution to it, and perhaps thereby giving it steadiness in its course. This 
is rendered more probable from the frequent use of the verb " torquere,'' 
" to whirl." 

1 Wheels herself round upon the wound) ver. 222. " Se rotat in vulnus ; " 
wheels round and round, endeavouring with her mouth to pull out the arrow 
that sticks in her flanks. 

3 As it flies togetlier with herself) ver. 223. " Fugientem " may either 
mean that the lance or dart is borne round by her, and eludes her endeavours 
as she wheels round and round, or else that it flies with her as she flies. 

3 His fury has now destroyed his features) ver. 224. His frantic valour 
had deformed his countenance by reason of his tearing out his eye together 
with the arrow. 

4 An instance of Casar deserted) ver. 234. He pretends that he It 
ready to abandon Caesar and join Pompey's party. This description is cer- 
tainly not consistent with probability, and indeed the conduct of Scaeva, 
however valorous, merits the reproof that is always due to treachery, for 
whatever purpose employed. 



B. vi. 241-261.] PHARSALIA. 215 

" Let him pay the penalty, whoever has hoped that 
Screva is subdued ; if Magnus seeks for peace from this 
sword, let him, Coesar being entreated, lower his standards. 
Do you think me like yourselves, and afraid of death? 
Less is the cause of Pompey and of the Senate to you, 
than is the love of death to me." 

At the same moment he thxts says, and the dust raised 
on high attests that Caesar's cohorts are at hand. He re- 
moved from Magnus the shame and the disgrace of the war, 
that whole troops, Screva, had fled from thee ; who, the Avar- 
fare withdrawn, dost sink; for while blood was being shed, 
the combat gave thee strength. The throng of his comrades 
raise him as he falls, and are delighted to bear him exhausted 
on their shoulders ; and they adore as it were a Divinity en- 
closed in his pierced breast, and a living instance of trans- 
cendent valour ; and they adorn the Gods l and Mars with his 
naked breast, Scceva, with thy weapons ; happy in the glories 
of this fame 2 , if the hardy Iberian, or if the Cantabrian with 
his small :! , or the Teutonian with his long weapons 4 , had 
turned his back on thee. Thou canst not adorn with the 
spoils of warfare the Temples of the Thunderer, thou canst 

1 And they adorn the Gods) ver. 256. Probably this means that they 
hung up his arms in the Temples of the Gods, and placed his coat of mail 
on the statue of Mars, which before was without one. Sulpitius thinks it 
means that they erected statues of the Gods decorated with his arms in the 
tower or fort which he had so bravely defended. 

8 Happy in the glories of this fame) ver. 257. From the account given 
by Caesar, who does not mention the loss of his eye, it appears that Scaeva 
recovered from his wounds. He is made mention of by Cicero in his 
Epistles to Atticus, B. xiii. Ep. 23, and B. xiv. Ep. 10, as one of the 
partisans of Caesar, about the period of his death. 

3 The Cantabrian with his small) ver. 259. The Cantabri were a people 
in the north of Spain, whose country was bounded on the east by the 
Astures, and on the west by the Autrigones. The name, however, was com- 
monly given to all the people in the north of Spain. By his reference to 
their " exigua anna," or " small arms," he perhaps refers to the use of the 
bow and arrow. 

* The Teutonian with his Inng weapons) ver. 259. The Teutones were 
of large stature, and famed for the length of their spears and bucklers. 
Virgil, in the JEneid, B. viii. 1. 662, makes mention of the latter. 

5 The Temples of the Thunderer) ver. 260. The Poet means that, notwith- 
standing his valorous deeds, being engaged in civil war, he will never have 
the opportunity, in conformity with the laws of the state, of accompanying 
his general in his triumphal procession to the Temple of Jupiter on the Capi- 
toline Hill. 



216 PHARSALIA. [a. VL 261-281. 

not shout nloud in the joyous triumph 1 . Wretched man, 
with valour how great didst thou obtain a tyrant ! 

Nor yet, repulsed from this part of the camp a , did Magnus 
rest, the war being deferred, within the entrenchments, any 
more than the sea is wearied, when, the east winds arousing 
themselves, the billows dash against the rock that breaks 
them, or^ the wave eats away the side of the lofty moun- 
tain, and prepares a late ruin for itself. On the one side, 
attacking the fortresses adjacent to the placid deep with 
the onset of a twofold warfare y he seizes them ; and he 
scatters his arms far and wide, and expands his tents upon 
the open plain ; and the liberty of changing their ground 
delights them. 

Thus does the Padus, swelling with full mouth, run over 
its shores protected with embankments, and confound 
whole fields ; if anywhere the land gives way and yields, 
not resisting the raging volume of water, then with all its 
stream it passes on, and with its flood opens fields to itself 
unknown. These owners the land forsakes ; on these hus- 
bandmen are additional fields bestowed, the Padus bestow- 
ing the gift. 

Hardly was Caesar aware of the combat, of which a 
fire elevated from a look-out gave notice. The dust 
now laid, he found the walls beaten down; and when he 
discovered the now cold marks, as though of ancient ruin, 

1 Shout aloud in the joyous triumph) ver. 261. " Ululare." In the use of 
this word he refers to the cries of " lo triumphe " with which the soldiers 
saluted the victorious general, as they accompanied him in triumph to the 
Capitoline Hill. 

* Repulsed from this part of the camp) ver. 263. These operations are 
thus related by Caesar, in the Civil War, 13. iii. c. 65 : " And now the 
Pompeians. after great havoc of our troops, were approaching the camp of 
Marcellinus, and had stmck no small terror into the cohorts, when Antony was 
observed descending from the rising ground with twelve cohorts. His arrival 
checked the Pompeians, and encouraged our men to recover from their affright. 
And shortly after, Caesar, having got notice by the smoke from all the forts, 
which was the usual signal on such occasions, drafted off some cohorts from 
the outposts and proceeded to the scene of action. And having there learned 
the loss he had sustained, and perceiving that Pompey had forced our works, 
and had encamped along our coast, so that he was at liberty to forage, and 
had a communication with his shipping, he altered his plan for conducting 
the war, as his design had not succeeded, and ordered a strong encampment 
to be made near Pompey." 

1 A two/old warfare) ver. 269. By sea and land. 



B. vi. 282-292.] PHARSALIA. 217 

the very quietude of the spot inflamed him, and the 
rest of the partisans of Pompey and their slumbers, Caesar 
overcome. He hastens to speed on even into slaughter, so 
long as he may disturb their joyousness. Then does he 
rush, threatening, upon Torquatus ' ; who not less speedily 
perceives 2 the arms of Csesar, than does the sailor, as the 
mast totters, take in all his sails against the Circeian storm :( ; 
his troops, too, he withdraws within a more limited wall, that 
in a small compass he may more densely dispose his arms. 
Caesar had crossed the ramparts of the outer trenches, 
when Magnus sent down his troops from all the hills 4 above, 

1 Threatening, upon Torquatus) ver. 285. This is the same Lucius 
Torquatus (or rather Lucius Manlius Torquatus) who is mentioned by Caesar 
in his narrative of the Civil War, B. iii. c. 11, as the governor of Oricum. 
He was a friend of Cicero and an ardent partisan of Pompey and the 
aristocratic faction. On the breaking out of the war he was Praetor, 
and was stationed at Alba, which he afterwards abandoned ; on which he 
joined Pompey in Greece. He was obliged to surrender Oricum to Caesar, 
who dismissed him uninjured. After the defeat at Pharsalia he went to 
Africn, and attempting to escape thence to Spain with Scipio, was taken 
prisoner by P. Sittius, and put to death. 

2 Who not less speedily perceives) ver. 286. This passage will be 
better understood by a reference to Caesar's account of this attack, in the 
Civil War, B. iii. c. 66-69, a portion of which narrative is to the following 
effect : " This place was half a mile distant from Pompey 's new camp. 
Caesar, hoping to surprise this legion, and anxious to repair the loss sustained 
that day, left two cohorts employed in the works to make an appearance of 
entrenching himself, and by a different route, as privately as he could, with 
his other cohorts, amounting to thirty-three, he marched in two lines against 
Pompey 's legion and his lesser camp. Nor did this first opinion deceive 
him. For he reached the place before Pompey could have notice of it ; and 
though the works were strong, yet having made the attack with the left wing, 
which he commanded in person, he obliged the Pompeians to quit the 
rampart in disorder. A barricade had been raised before the gates, at which 
a short contest was maintained, our men endeavouring to force their way in, 
and the enemy to defend the camp. But the valour of our men prevailed, 
and having cut down the barricade, they first forced the greater camp, and 
after that the fort which was enclosed within it ; and as the legion on its 
repulse had retired to this, they slew several defending themselves there." 

3 Arjaintt the Circeian storm) ver. 287. Circeium was a promontory of 
Latium on which was the ancient town of Circeii. The navigation round this 
point was considered dangerous, and it was the custom on approaching it to 
lurl the sails and ply the oars with vigour. 

4 Maynus sent down his troops from all the hills) ver. 292. The move- 
ment of Pompey to the rescue is thus related in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 69 : 
"In the meantime, Pompey, by the great delay which this occasioned, being 
informed of what hud happened, marched with the fifth legion, which he 



218 PIIARSALIA. [u. VL 292 302. 

and poured forth his ranks upon the blockaded foe. 
Not thus does he who dwells in the valleys of .fctim 1 
dread Enceladus-, the south wind blowing, when yKtna 
utterly empties its caverns, and, flowing with jlrr, streams 
down upon the plains ; as do the soldiers of Caesar, con- 
quered by the thickening dust :t already before the battle, and 
alarmed beneath a* cloud of blinded fear, meet the enemy 
as they fly, and by their alarm rush on to destruction itself. 
Then might all the blood have been shed 4 for the civil war- 
fare, even to the procuring of peace ; the chieftain himself 
restrained the raging swords. 

Happy and free, Rome, under thy laws, mightst thou 

called away from their work, to support his troops ; and at the same time 
his cavalry was advancing towards ours, and an army in order of battle was 
seen at a distance by our men, who had taken possession of the camp, and 
the face of affairs was suddenly changed. For Pompey's legion, encouraged 
by the hope of speedy support, attempted to make a stand at the Decu- 
man gate, and made a bold charge on our men. Caesar's cavalry, who had 
mounted the rampart by a narrow breach, being apprehensive of their retreat, 
was the first to flee. The right wing, which had been separated from the 
left, observing the terror of the cavalry, to prevent their being overpowered 
in the lines, were endeavouring to retreat by the same way as they burst in ; 
and most of them, lest they should be engaged in the narrow passes, threw 
themselves down a rampart ten feet high into the trenches ; and the first 
being trodden to death, the rest procured their safety and escaped over their 
bodies. The soldiers of the left wing, perceiving from the rampart that 
Pompey was advancing, and their own friends flying, being afraid that they 
should be enclosed between the two ramparts, as they had an enemy both 
within and without, strove to secure their retreat the same way they came.'' 

1 Dwells in the valleys of jEtna) ver. 293. He alludes to the in- 
habitants of the town of Catana, or Catina, which was situate at the foot of 
Mount 2Etna, and who were exposed to danger from its eruptions. 

- Enceladui) ver. 294. Enceladus the giant, son of Tartarus and Terra, 
having been struck by the thunderbolts of Jupiter, was said to have been 
buried under Mount vEtna, the eruptions of which were occasioned by hia 
turning his sides. They were also sometimes attributed to the winds raging 
within its caverns. 

3 Conquered by the thickening dust) ver. 296. On seeing the clouds of 
dust raised by the troops of Pompey on their approach. 

4 Then might all the blood have been shed) ver. 300. Caesar, in the Civil 
War, thus described this engagement so disastrous to his forces, B. iii. c. 69 : 
" All wfis disorder, consternation, and flight ; insomuch that, when Caesar 
laid hold of the standards of those who were running away, and desired 
them to stop, some left their horses behind, and continued to run in the 
same manner ; others, through fear, even threw away their standards, nor 
did a single man fnce about." 



B. VL 302-318.] PHARSALIA. 219 

be, and thy own mistress, if on that occasion a Sulla 
had conquered for thee 1 . We lament, alas! and ever 
shall lament, that the greatest of thy crimes is successful 
for thee, to have fought with a duteous son-in-law. O sad 
fate ! Then Libya would not have hewailed the slaughter 
of Utica, and Spain of Munda, nor would the Nile, polluted 
with shameful blood 2 , have borne along a carcase more noble 
than the Pharian king; nor would the naked Juba :s have 
pressed the Marmaric sands, and Scipio appeased the 
ghosts 4 of the Carthaginians by pouring forth his blood; 
nor would life 5 have been deprived of the hallowed Cato. 
This might, Eome, have been the last day of woe to thee ; 
Pharsalia might have been wrested from the midst of the 
Fates. 

The spot occupied against the will of the Divinities Csesar 
forsakes, and with his mangled troops seeks the Emathian 
lands. His followers, by their exhortations, attempt to 
dissuade Magnus, about to pursue 6 the arms of his 

1 A Sulla had conquered for thee) ver. 303. He attributes the forbear- 
ance of Pompey to pursue to his leniency cind humane disposition, and says, 
that if he had been as fond of bloodshed as Sulla was, he might, on that 
occasion, by following up the victory, have put an end to the war. Caesar, 
however, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 70, assigns a different reason for the 
moderation of Pompey : " In this calamity the following favourable circum- 
stance occurred to prevent the ruin of our whole army, namely, that Pompey, 
suspecting an ambuscade (because, as I suppose, his success had far exceeded 
his hopes, as he had seen his men, a moment before, flying from the camp), 
did not dare for some time to approach the fortification, and that his horse 
were retarded from pursuing, because the passes and gates were in possession 
of Caesar's soldiers. Thus a trifling circumstance proved of equal importance 
to each party; for the rampart drawn from the camp to the river interrupted 
the progress and certainty of Cxsar's victory, after he had forced Pompey's 
camp. The same thing, by retarding the rapidity of the enemy's pursuit, 
preserved our army." 

2 The Nile, polluted with shameful Uood) ver. 307. The Nile would not 
then have borne on its waves the corpse of Pompey, more noble than the 
body of the Egyptian king himself. 

3 Nor would the naked Jula) ver. 309. See the Note to B. iii. 1. 293. 

4 And Scipio appeased the ghosts) ver. 311. He alludes to the death of 
Metellus Scipio, who fell at the same time as Juba. See the Note to B. ii. 
1. 472. 

5 Nor would life) ver. 311. Burmann thinks that " vita " here means 
"mankind;" who, according to the Poet, suffered a loss in the death of 
Cato. 

6 Magnus, about to pursue) ver. 316. Caesar tells us that after this battle 
Pompey was saluted " Imperator," which title he retained, and thenceforth 



220 PHARSALIA. [B. vr. 818-841. 

father-in-law, wherever he may fly ; that he may repair 
to his native land and Ausonia now free from the enemy. 

" Never," said he, " will I, after the example of Caesar, 
betake myself again to my country, and never shall Rome 
behold me, except returning, my forces dismissed. Hes- 
peria I was able, the war commencing, to hold, if I hud 
been willing to entrust my troops in the temples of my 
country, and to fight in the midst of the Forum. S=> 
long as I could withdraw the war, I would march on to the 
extreme regions of the Scythian frosts, and the burning 
tracks. Victorious, shall I, Rome, deprive thee of repose, 
who, that battles might not exhaust thee, took to flight? 
Oh ! rather, that thou mayst suffer nothing in this warfare, 
may Caesar deem thee to be his own." 

Thus having said, he turns his course towards the rising 
of Phoebus, and, passing over trackless regions of the earth. 
where Candavia 1 opens her vast forest ranges, he reaches 
Emathia, which the Fates destined for the warfare. 

The mountain rock of Ossa- bounds Thessaly, on the 
side on which Titan in the hours of winter brings in the 
day. When the summer with its higher rising brings 
Phoebus to the zenith of the sky, Pelion opposes his 
shadow to the rising rays 3 . But the midday fires of heaven 
and the solstitial hea'd of the raging Lion the woody 
Othrys averts. Pindus receives the opposing Zephyrs and 
lapyx 4 , and, evening hastening on, cuts short the light. 
The dweller, too, on Olympus, not dreading Boreas, is 

allowed himself to be addressed by it. The movements of Cresar immedi- 
ately after this defeat are described in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 73-75. 

1 Where Candavia) ver. 331. Candavia was a mountain range commenc- 
ing in Epirus, which separated Illyricum from Macedonia. 

* Mountain rock of Ossa) ver. 334. He means that Ossa bounds Thes- 
ftaly on the north-east. The present description is supposed to have been 
borrowed from Herodotus. 

3 Opposes his shadow to tie rising rays) ver. 335, 36. There is consider- 
able doubt among the Commentators as to the meaning of this passage. 
Howe has the following Note : " According to Cellaritis, Lucan must 
be out in his geography, as well as astronomy; for, as the days lengthen, 
the sun rises to the northward of the east ; whereas Cellarius places Pelion 
to the southward. For the rest, Othrys lies to the south, Pindus to the 
west-south-west, and Olympus to the north." 

4 And lapyx) ver. 339. lapyx was the wind which blew from the 
west-north-west, off the coast of Apulia, in the south of Italy, the ancient 
name of which was lapygia. 



B. vi. 342-352.] PHARSALIA. 221 

unacquainted throughout all his nights with shining 
Arctos. 

Between these mountains, which slope downwards with 
a valley between, formerly the fields lay concealed amid 
marshes extending far and wide, while the plains retained 
the rivers, and Tempe, affording a passage 1 through, gave 
no outlet to the sea ; and their course was as they filled a 
single standing water to increase it. After that, by the hand 
of Hercules, the vast Ossa was divided from Olympus, and 
Nereus was sensible of- the , 'onward rush of the water thus 
sudden ; better destined to remain beneath :i the waves, Ema- 
thian Pharsalus, the kingdom of the sea-descended Achilles 4 
rose forth, and Phylace'' that touched with the first ship 
the Ehoetean shores", and Pteleus 7 , and Dorion lamenting" 

1 Tempe, affording a passage) ver. 345. -This was a valley in the north 
of Thessaly, 'lying 'between Mounts Olympus and Ossa, through which the 
Peneus ran into the sea. It was famed among the ancients for its romantic 
beauty. It is the only channel through which the waters of the Thes- 
salian plains ran to the sea; and the Poet here alludes to the common 
opinion of the ancients, that these waters had once covered the country with 
a vast lake, till an outlet was formed for them by a great convulsion of 
nature, which rent asunder the rocks of Tempe. 

* And Nereus teas sensible of) ver. 349. The name of the sea-god 
Nereus is here used to signify the sea, which, the Poet says, was sensible of 
the vast influx of waters. 

3 Better destined to remain beneath) ver. 349. More fortunate for poste- 
rity if the plains of Pharsalia had remained under the waves. 

4 Of the sea-descended Achilles) ver. 350. Thessaly, once the realm of 
Achilles, the son of the sea-goddess Thetis. 

4 And Phylace) ver. 352. Phylace was a town of Phthiotis in Thessaly, 
east of the Enipeus, on the northern side of Mount Othrys. Protesilaiis was 
its king, and was the first Greek who landed on the shores of Troy, at the 
commencement of the Trojan war, notwithstanding the prediction that cer- 
tain death awaited him that should do so. See the Epistle of Laodamia to 
Prntesilaiis in the Heroides of Ovid, p. 124, et sey., in the Translation in 
Bohn's Classical Library. 

8 The Rhcetean shores) ver. 351. Meaning thereby the shores of Troy, 
near which was the Promontory Rhosteum. 

7 And Pteleus) ver. 352. Pteleos, or Pteleum, was an ancient seaport 
town in the Phthiotian district in Thessaly. 

8 And Dorion lamenting) ver. 352. Dorion, or, as it was more generally 
called, Dotion or Dotium, was an ancient town and plain of Thessaly, near 
Lake Bcebe. It was here that, according to tradition, Thamyris challenged 
the Muses to a contest in song, in consequence of which he was deprived of 
his sight and his musical powers. Pierides was a surname of the Muses, 
which they derived either from Pieria, near Mount Olympus, where they 
were first worshipped, or else from Pierus, an ancient king of Thrace, who 
first established their worship. 



222 PHARSALIA. [B. vi. 352-363. 

the wrath of the Plenties; Trachyn 1 , and Meliboea 2 , hrave 
with tlie quiver of Hercules, the reward of the direful 
torch ;) ; and once-powerful Larissa 4 ; where they now 
plough over Argos once renowned '' ; where story speaks of 
ancient Thebes of Echion ; where once the exiled Agave 
bearing the head and neck of Pentheus committed them to 
the closing fire, complaining that this alone of her son she 
had recovered 7 . 

The marsh then, burst asunder, divided into numerous 
streams. On the west JEa.s thence flows 8 clear into the 
Ionian sea, but with a small stream ; nor stronger with his 
waves does the father of ravished Isis 9 flow, and, CEneus, 

1 Trachyn) ver. 353. See B. iii. 1. 178. 

2 Melilicea) ver. 354. This was a town on the coast of Magnesia in 
Thessaly, between Mounts Ossa and Felion. Horace mentions it as belong- 
ing to the dominions of Philoctetes, who is here alluded to, to whom also 
Trachyn belonged. 

3 The reward of Hie direful torch) ver. 354. Philoctetes, at the request 
of Hercules, lighted the funereal pile on which that hero was burnt on Mount 
(Eta ; in return for which, he bestowed on Philoctetes his bow and arrows, 
without the presence of which at the siege, it was fated that Troy could 
not be taken. 

4 Once-powerful Larissa) ver. 355. There were several Pelasgian places 
of this name, and it is uncertain which of the two in Thessaly is here referred 
to ; one was an important town of Pelasgiotis in Thessaly, situate on the 
Peneus, in an extensive plain ; the other, famed as the birthplace of Achilles, 
and surnamed Cremaste, was in Phthiotis. 

* Argos once renowned) ver. 356. This was a town of Pelasgian Thes- 
saly, which had long been in ruins. By the epithet " nobile " he probably 
alludes to the breed of high-spirited horses which were reared there for the 
contests at the Olympic games. 

* T/ieties of Echion) ver. 357. Echion was one of the five surviving 
Sparti who remained of those who had sprung up from the dragon's teeth 
which Cadmus had sown. He was the husband of Agave, and the father of 
Pentheus. Thebes, in the district of Phthiotis, was an important city of 
Thessaly; the Poet probably calls it " Echionia," for the reason stated by 
him that Agave, after she had murdered her son, fled thither in exile. See 
B. i. 1. 574, and the Note to the passage. 

7 She had recovered) ver. 359. He seems to mean, that on recovering her 
senses, Agave complained that so small a portion of the limbs had been 
left for her to place on the funeral pile, the rest having been torn to 
pieces by the frantic Bacchanals, who had aided her in the murder. 

8 JSas thence JUnrs) ver. 361. This river is called by Pliny the Elder, 
Aous. It was a small limpid stream, running through Epirus and Thessaly, 
and discharging itself into the Ionian Sea. 

' The father of ravished Isis) ver. 362. There were two rivers of the 
name of Inachus ; the one here alluded to, now called the Banitza, was a 
river of Acarnan.'a, which rises in Mount Lacmon, in the range of Findus, 



u. vi. 363-370-1 PHARSALIA. 223 

he, almost thy son-in-law 1 covers the Eckinades 2 with mud 
from his turbid waves 3 ; and Evenus 4 , stained with the blood 
of Nessus 5 , cuts through Calydon, the city of Meleager. 
Spercheus, with hastening course* 1 , cleaves the Malian 
waters ; and with pure stream Aniphrysus waters the 
pastures 7 where Phoebus served as shepherd ; Anauros, 

and falls into the Acheloiis. He was fabled to be the father of lo, who was 
carried away by Jupiter, and transformed by him into the shape of a cow, 
by some considered to be the same as the Egyptian Goddess Isis. Ovid, 
however, seems to imply that the Inachus of Argolis was the sire of lo. 
See the story related at length in the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. i., and 
the explanation in the Translation in Bohn's Classical Library, p. 36. 

1 Almost thy son-in-laiv) ver. 363. The river Acheloiis had been pro- 
mised the hiind of Deianira, the daughter of CEneus, king of Calydon, in 
.ZEtolia; but being conquered in single combat by Hercules, he was forced to 
resign her to the hero. The story of this contest is related at the com- 
mencement of the Ninth Book of the Metamorphoses. 

2 Covers the Eckinades) ver. 364. The Echinades were said to have been 
five Naiad nymphs, whom, in a fit of jealousy, the river Acheloiis hurled into 
the sea, on which they were transformed into islands. See their story related 
in the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. viii. 1. 570, et seq. They are now called 
Curzolari, and the largest, which was called Dulichium, is now united to the 
mainland. 

3 With mud from his turbid waves) ver. 364. The Acheloiis, more an- 
ciently called Thoas, Axenus, and Thestius, is the largest river in Greece. 
It rises in Mount Pindus and falls into the Ionian Sea, opposite the Echi- 
nades, which, as the Poet here hints, were amplified by the earth discharged 
by its waters. 

4 And Evenus) ver. 366. This river, now called Fidhari, was more an- 
ciently called the Lycormas. It risea in Mount (Eta, and flows with a rapid 
stream through .ZEtolia into the sea. 

* Stained with the Mood of Nessus) ver. 365. The river Evenus, on the 
banks of which the Centaur Nessus was slain by the arrow of Hercules, 
passes by Calydon, a city of .ZEtolia, which was formerly reigned over by 
Meleager, the lover of Atalanta, and who was slain through the jealousy of 
his own mother, Althea. See the story of the death of Nessus related at 
length in Ovid's Metamorphoses, B. viii. 1. 261, et seq. 

6 Spercheus, with hastening course) ver. 367. The Spercheus, now called 
the Elladha, rises in Mount Tymphrestus, in the north of Thessaly, and 
runs easterly, through the Malian districts, falling into the Sinus Muliacus, 
or Malian Gulf, now called the Bay of Zeitun, off the coast of the south of 
Thessaly, north-west of the Isle of Euboea, and north of the present Straits 
of Negropont. 

* Amphrysus waters the pastures) ver. 368. Amphrysus was a small 
river of Thessaly, which flows into the Pagasaean Gulf; on the banks of 
wbiqh Apollo, in the guise of a shepherd, kept the flocks of King Admetus, 
when he had been banished from heaven by Jupiter, for slaving the Cyclops 



224 PIIAKSALIA. [B. vi. 370 -378. 

too l , who neither breathes forth damp fogs, nor air mois- 
tened with dew, nor light breezes ; and whatever stream of 
itself not known presents its waves in the Peneus- to the 
ocean ; with violent flood flows the Apidanus 3 ; and the 
Enipeus 4 never swift unless mingled. 

Asopus takes his course :', and Phoenix, and Melas c . 
Alone does Titaresos 7 , where he comes into a stream of an- 
other name, keep distinct his waters, and, gliding from above, 
uses the stream of Peneus as though dry fields. The re- 

who liail made the bolts with which his son JKsculupius was slain by Jupiter 
for daring to raise Hippolytus to life by his medical skill. 

1 Anauros, too) ver. 370. The Anauros was a river of Thessaly which 
flows into the Pagasaean Gulf. The story that it sent forth no mists or 
exhalations probably originated from the resemblance of its name to the 
Greek words anv, " without," and aSgtt, " an exhalation." 

8 In the Peneus) ver. 372. The Peneus here mentioned wns the chief 
river of Thessaly, and is now called the Salambria. It rises in Mount 
Lacmon, a branch of the Pindus chain, and after receiving many streams, 
the chief of which are the Enipeus, the Letha^us, and the Titaresius, flows 
through the vale of Tempe into the sea. 

3 Flows the Apidanus) ver. 373. This was a river of Thessaly, joining 
the Enipeus near Fharsalus. Ovid, in the Metamorphoses, 13. i. 1. 580, calli 
it " senex Apidanus," "the aged;" which some take to mean "slow," 
whereas here the force of its current is spoken of. Ovid likewise speaks of 
the " irrequietus," "restless" Enipeus, which Lucan, on the contrary, 
pronounces to be sluggish until its confluence with the Apidanus. 

4 And the Enipeus) ver. 373. The Enipeus rises in Mount Othrys in 
Thessaly, receives the Apidanus near Pharsalus, and flows into the Peneus. 
There were rivers in Elis and Macedonia of the same name. 

4 Asopus takes his course) ver. 374. There were several rivers of this 
name. The one here alluded to rises in Mount (Eta, in Phthiotis, and 
flows into the Sinus Maliacns, after its conjunction with the Phoenix, a 
small stream of the south of Thessaly, which joins it near Thermopylae. 

8 And Melas) ver. 374. Melas was the name of several rivers whose 
waters were of a dark colour. There were two of this name in Thessaly, 
one of which rising in the Malian district, and, flowing past Trachyn, fell 
into the Sinus Maliacus, while the other, rising in Phthiotis, fell into the 
Apidanus. 

7 Alone does Titaresos) ver. 376. The Titaresos, or Titaresius, was a 
river of Thessaly, called also Europus, rising on Mount Titarus and falling 
into the Peneus. Lucan here alludes to the words of Homer in the Iliad, 
B. ii? 1. 752, who states that the Titaresius " does not mingle with the 
Peneus, but flows on the surface of it, just like oil, for it flows from the 
waters from Styx in Orcus." Its waters are supposed by physiologists to 
have been impregnated with an oily substance, whence it was said to be a 
branch of the Styx, and that it disdained to mingle with the rivers of 
mortals. 



B. vi. 378-387.] PHARSALIA. 225 

port is that this river flows from the Stygian marshes, 
and that, mindful of his rise, he is unwilling to endure 
the contact of an ignoble stream, and preserves the vene- 
ration of the Gods for himself l . 

As soon as the fields were open to the rivers sent forth, 
the rich furrow divided beneath the Bcebycian ploughshare 2 ; 
then, pressed by the right hand of the Lelegians, 3 the plough 
sank deep. The JEolian 4 and Dolopian husbandmen 5 
cleared the ground, both the Magnetes 6 , a nation known 
by then- horses, and the Minyse 7 , by then- oars. There 
did the pregnant cloud pour forth in the Pelethronian 
Caverns 8 , the Centaurs sprung from Ixion 9 , half beasts ; 

1 The veneration of the Gods for himself) ver. 380. As the Gods fear to 
swear by the river Styx and break their oath, this river, as a branch of it, 
wishes still to insure the same respect for the Deities. 

2 Beneath the Boebycian plougfohare) ver. 382. He means that the land 
which was cultivated by the people of the town of Brebe was then, for the 
first time, left dry. Boebe was a town of Pelasgiotis, in Thessaly, on the 
western shore of Lake Bffibeis. 

3 Of the Lelegians) ver. 383. The Leleges were an ancient people, sup- 
posed to have inhabited Greece before the Hellenes. They were a warlike 
and a migratory race, but their origin is enveloped in the greatest obscurity. 
Pliny mentions them as inhabitants of the country of the Locrians, adjacent 
to Thessaly; Strabo says that they were the same people that Pindar calls 
Centaurs. 

4 The ^Eolian) ver. 384. The .ZEolians were an ancient people of Thes^ 
saly, said to have been descended from .ZEolus, the son of Hellen. It war, 
however, a name long given to all the inhabitants of Greece beyond the 
Peloponnesus, except the people of Athens and Megara. 

* And Dolopian husbandmen) ver. 384. The Dolopians were a people 
of Thessaly, who dwelt on the banks of the Enipeus, but, in later times, at 
the foot of Mount Pindus. 

6 Both the Magnetes) ver. 385. These were the inhabitants of the country 
of Magnesia, the most easterly part of Thessaly, extending from the Peneus 
on the north to the Pagasaean Gulf on the south, and including Mounts Ossa 
and Pelion ; like their neighbours, the Centaurs, the Magnetes were famed 
for their skill in horsemanship. 

7 The Minyce) ver. 385. The Minyse were an ancient people, who dwelt 
in Thessaly, in the vicinity of lolcos. The greater part of the Argonauts, 
who probably were among the earliest to give attention to naval affairs, were 
of the Minyan race. 

* In the Pelethronian caverns) ver. 387. Pelethronium was a moun- 
tainous district of Thessaly, part of Mount Pelion, where the Lapithae dwelt, 
and from whose king, Pelethronium, it was said to have derived its name. 

8 X/>runy from Ixion) ver. 386. Ixion was king of the Lapithae, or 
Phlegyans, and the story was, that being introduced to the table of Jupiter, 

Q 



226 PHARSALIA. [B. VL 388-396. 

thee, Monychus 1 , breaking the rugged rocks of Pholoe 2 , and 
thee, fierce Rhoetus 3 , hurling beneath the heights of (Eta 
the mountain ashes, which hardly Boreas could tear up ; 
Pholus, too, the host 4 of great Alcides ; and thee, treacle T, >ti-; 
ferryman 5 over the river, destined to feel the arrows tipped 
with Lernsean venom, and thee, aged Chiron", who, 
shining with thy cold Constellation, dost drive away the 
greater Scorpion 7 with the Hsemonian bow. 

In this londjirst shone the seeds of fierce warfare. From 

he fell in love with Juno, and offered violence to her, on which Jupiter tub- 
stituted a cloud in her form, by which Ixion became the father of Ceutaurus, 
from whom descended the Centaurs, a people of Thessaly. 

' Monychus) ver. 388. He was one of the Centaurs, and is mentioned 
by Ovid in the Metamorphoses, B. xii. 1. 499, as taking part in the battle 
against the Lapithne, where he is represented as exclaiming, " 'Heap upon 
Caeneus stones and beams and entire mountains, and dash out his long-lived 
breath by throwing whole woods upon him. Let a wood press on his jaws ; 
and weight shall be in place of wounds.' Thus he said ; and by chance 
having got a tree thrown down by the power of the boisterous south wind, 
he hurled it against the powerful foe; and he was an example to the rest; 
and in a short time, Othrys, thou wast bare of trees, and Pelion had no 
shades." Monychus is also mentioned by Juvenal and Valerius Flnccus. 

2 The rugyed rocks of Pholoe) ver. 38. Pholoe, now called Olono, was 
a mountain forming the boundary between Arcadia and Elis, being a south- 
ern continuation of the Erymanthian chain. 

3 Thee, fierce Rhoetus) ver. 390. Rhrctus was one of the Centaurs men- 
tioned by Ovid as present at the battle with the Lapithae, in the Metamor- 
phoses, B. xii. 1. 296, where being wounded he takes to flight. He is also 
mentioned by Virgil. 

4 Phohis, too, the host) ver. 391. Pholus was a Centaur who hospitably en- 
tertained Hercules in his travels. Having taken up one of the arrows tipped 
with the poison of the Hydra in order to examine it, it fell upon his foot, 
and he died of the wound, on which Hercules buried him on Mount Pholoe, 
which from that circumstance received its name. He is mentioned by Ovid 
as being present at the battle with the Lapithre, in the Metamorphoses, 
B. xii. 1. 306. 

4 Thee, treacherous ferryman) ver. 392. He alludes to the fate of the Cen- 
taur Nessus, who on carrying Deianira across the river Evenus attempted to 
offer violence to her, on which he was slain by Hercules with an arrow 
tipped with the venom of the Lernasan Hydra. 

8 And thee, aged Chiron) ver. 393. The Centaur Chiron was famed for his 
skill in physic and music, and was the tutor of Achilles. After his death 
he was transferred to heaven, and made one of the Zodiacal Constellations, 
under the name of Sagittarius, " the archer," which follows the sign of the 
Scorpion. 

7 The greater Scorpion) ver. 394. The Constellation Scorpio occupies 
more space than any other one of the Zodiacal Constellations. 



B. vi. 396-414.] PIIARSALIA. 227 

the rocks, struck with the trident, first did the Thessalian 
charger ', an omen of direful wars, spring forth ; first 
did he champ the steel and the bit", and foam at the un- 
wonted reins of the Lapithan subduer from the Pagasscan 
shore 3 . The first ship cleaving the ocean, exposed earth- 
horn man upon the unknown waves. Itonus, the ruler 4 of 
the Thessalian land, was the first to hammer masses of 
heated metal into form, and to melt silver with the flames 
and stamp gold into coin, and liquefy copper in immense 
furnaces. There was it fa-st granted to number riches, a 
(hum which has urged on nations to accursed arms. 

Hence did Python *, that most huge serpent, descend, 
and glide along the fields of Cyrrha; whence, too, the 
Thessalian laurels come to the Pythian games 6 . Hence the 
impious Aloeus 7 sent forth his progeny against the Gods of 
heaven, when Pelion raised itself almost to the lofty stars, 
and Ossa, meeting the constellations, impeded their course. 

When upon this land the chieftains have pitched the 

1 First did the Thessalian charger) ver. 397. He alludes to the horse, 
which, in his contest with Minerva who should give name to the capital 
of Attica, Neptune caused at a blow of his trident to spring from out of the 
earth. According to most accounts he created the horse in Attica; but 
Lucan here says (in which statement he is supported by Homer and Apollo- 
dorus) that it took place in Thessaly; where also he made a present of the 
famous horse to Peleus. 

2 First did he cJiamp the steel and the bit) ver. 398. Pelethronius, king 
of the Lapithae, was said to have been the inventor of the bridle and the 
bit. 

3 From the Pagascean shore) ver. 400. He alludes to the sailing of the 
Argonautic expedition from Pagasse in Thessaly, where the Argo was built. 

4 Itonus, the ruler) ver. 408. Itonus was an ancient king of Thessaly, 
said to have been a son of Deucalion, or, according to some, of Apollo. 

5 Hence did Python) ver. 408. The serpent Python was said to have 
been generated in Thessaly from the slime and putrescence left after the 
deluge of Deucalion had subsided. It was slain by the shafts of Apollo, 
who covered the sacred tripod at Delphi with its skin, and instituted the 
Pythian games as a memorial of his victory. 

' Come to the Pythian games) ver. 409. At the celebration of the Py- 
thian games at Delphi, the Temple of Apollo was adorned with laurel 
brought for the purpose from Thessaly. 

7 The impious Aloeus) ver. 410. Aloeus was the son of Neptune and 
Canace. He married Iphimedia, the daughter of Triops, who was beloved 
by Neptune, and had by him the twin sons Otus and Ephialtes, giants who, 
at the age of nine years, threatened the Gods with war, and attempted to 
pile Ossa on Olympus and Pelion on Ossa. 

Q 2 



228 PHAESALIA. [B. vi. 414-429. 

camps destined by the Fates, their minds, presaging the 
future warfare, engage all, and it is clear that the momentous 
hour of the great crisis is drawing nigh. Because their fates 
are now close approaching, degenerate minds tremble, and 
ponder on the worst. A few, courage preferred, feel both 
hopes and fears as to the event. But mingled with the 
timid multitude is Sextus 1 , an offspring unworthy of 
Magnus for a parent, who afterwards, roving, an exile, on 
the Scyllsean waves, a Sicilian pirate, polluted his triumphs 
on the deep, who, fear spurring him on to know before- 
hand the events of fate, both impatient of delay and faint- 
hearted about all things to come, consults not the tripods of 
Delos, not the Pythian caves, nor does he choose to enquire 
what sounds Dodona, the nourisher on the first fruits 2 , 
sends forth from the brass of Jove :t , who from the entrails 
can reveal the fates 4 , who can explain the birds, who can ob- 

1 Is Sexlus) ver. 420. Sextus was the younger son of Pompey, by his 
wife Mucia. During the greater part, if not the whole, of his father's cam- 
paign in Greece, he was in the island of Lesbos, so that most probably there 
is not any foundation for the story here told by Lucan. After the defeat of 
his brother Cneius at the battle of Munda, he for some time supported himself 
by rapine and plunder in Spain, and many years afterwards, having gained 
possession of Sicily, Sardinia, and Corsica, his fleets plundered all the sup- 
plies of corn which came from Egypt and the eastern provinces, so that 
famine seemed for a time inevitable at Rome. He was taken prisoner by 
the troops of Antony in the neighbourhood of Miletus, and was there put to 
death. 

3 The nourislier on tlie first fruits) ver. 426. " Frugibus." The fruits of 
the woods of Dodona were acorns (or as May, in his Translation, quaintly 
calls them, "akehornes"), upon which the primitive races of mankind were 
said to have fed. 

1 3 Sends forth from Hie Irassof Jove) ver. 427. It was said by some that 
in the oracles of Jupiter at Dodona the will of heaven was divulged by the 
ringing of certain cauldrons there suspended. Stephanus Byzantinus informs 
us that in that part of the forest of Dodona where the oracle stood, there 
were two pillars erected at a small distance from each other; on one there 
was placed a brazen vessel about the size of an ordinary cauldron, and on 
the other a little boy, probably a piece of mechanism, who held a brazen 
whip with several thongs, which hung loose and were easily moved. \Vhen 
the wind blew, the lashes struck against the vessel, and occasioned a noise 
while the wind continued. He says that it was from these that the forest 
took the name of Dodona ; " dodo," in the ancient language of the vicinity, 
signifying " a cauldron." 

* From the entrails can reveal the fates) ver. 427. The meaning is, that 
he is not willing in a righteous manner to learn the decrees of fate by con- 
sulting the entrails of animals, auspices derived from birds, auguries derived 



B. vi. 429-442.] PHARSALIA. 229 

serve the lightnings of heaven and search the stars with 
Assyrian care, or if there is any method, secret, but lawful 1 . 

He had gained a knowledge of - the secrets of the ruthless 
magicians detested by the Gods above, and the altars sad 
with dreadful sacrifices, and the aid of the shades below 
and of Pluto ; and to him, wretched man, it seemed clear 
that the Gods of heaven knew too little :5 . 

The vain and direful frenzy the very locality promotes, 
and, adjoining to the camp, the cities of the Haemonian 
women, whom no power over any prodigy that has been 
invented can surpass, whose art is each thing that is not 
believed. Moreover, the Thessalian land produces on its 
crags both noxious herbs, and rocks that are sensible to the 
magicians as they chaunt their deadly secrets. There spring 
up many things destined to offer violence to the Deities 4 ; 
and the Colchian stranger gathers 5 in the Heemonian lands 
those herbs which she has not brought. 

from thunder and lightning, nor yet the astrological art derived from the 
Chaldaeans of Assyria. 

1 Any method, secret, lut lawful) ver. 430. He means those secret arts of 
divination which it was not unrighteous to use, such as geomancy and astro- 
logy; but instead of resorting to these, Sextus employs the forbidden prac- 
tices of the art of necromancy. 

2 He had gained a, knowledge of) ver. 432. " Noverat " does not neces- 
sarily mean that Sextus was skilled himself in the necromantic art, but 
that he was aware of its existence and of the cultivation of it by the 
sorceresses of Thessaly. Weise, however, thinks that it implies that Sextus 
had studied the art. 

3 That the Gods of heaven liiew too little) ver. 433-4. He believed that, 
the Gods of heaven were not so likely to be acquainted with the future as 
the Infernal Deities and the shades of the dead. 

4 To offer violence to the Deities) ver. 441. To be able to gain power 
over the reluctant Gods was one of the pretensions of the sorceresses of 
antiquity. Thus, in the Heroides of Ovid, in the Epistle of Hypsipyle to 
Jason, she says, speaking of the enchantress Medea, 1. 83, et seq. : " By her 
incantations has she influenced thee; and with her enchanted sickle does 
she reap the dreadful plants. She endeavours to draw down the struggling 
moon from her chariot, and to envelop the horses of the sun in darkness. 
She bridles the waves and stops the winding rivers; she moves the woods 
and the firm rocks from their spot." For an account of the magic rites and 
spells of the sorceresses of antiquity the reader is referred to the Third Vo- 
lume of the Translation of Ovid in Bohn's Classical Library, pages 56-7, 
and 278-9. 

* The Colchian stranger galliers) ver. 442. He alludes to the magical in- 
cantations of the Colchian Medea when she had arrived with Jason in Thes- 
saly, and says that she found no lack of plants there suited to aid her in her 



230 -PHABSALIA. [B. VL 443-459. 

The impious charms of the accursed nation turn the ears 
of the inhabitants of heaven that are deaf to peoples so 
numerous, to nations so many. That voice alone goes 
forth amid the recesses of the heavens, and bears the strin- 
gent words to the unwilling Deities, from which the care 
of the skies and of the floating heavens never calls them 
away. When the accursed murmur has reached the stars, 
then, although Babylon of Perseus and mysterious Mem- 
phis 1 should open all the shrines of the ancient Magi, 
the Thessalian witch to foreign altars draws away the Gods 
of heaven. 

Through the charms of the Thessalian witches a love not 
induced by the Fates has entered into hardened hearts; and 
stem old men have burned with illicit flames. And not 
only do noxious potions avail; or when they withdraw the 
pledges swelling with its juices from the forehead of the 
mother about to show her affection 2 . The mind, polluted 
by no corruption of imbibed poison, perishes by force of 
spells 3 . Those whom no unison of the bed jointly occu- 

enchantments. It was there that by her magical arts she restored the aped 
^son to youth, and likewise contrived the death of his brother Pelias. See 
the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. vii. 1. 223, et teq., where her culling of the 
Thessalian herbs is thus described: "She looked down upon Thessalian 
Tempe below her, and guided her dragons towards the chalky regions ; and 
observed the herbs which Ossa and which the lofty Pelion bore, Othrys too, 
and Pindus, and Olympus still greater than Pindus ; and part she tore up by 
the root gently worked, part she cut down with the bend of a brazen sickle. 
Many a herb, too, that grew on the banks of Apidanus pleased her ; many, too, 
on the banks of Amphrysus ; nor, Enipeus, didst thou escape. The Peneiau 
waters, and the SpercheLin as well, contributed something, and the rushy 
shores of Boebe. She plucks, too, enlivening herbs by the Euboean Anthedon." 

1 And mysUriout Memphis) ver. 449. Memphis is here used to signify 
Egypt in general, which at all times, from the time of the magicians who 
endeavoured by their enchantments to compete with the miracles of Moses 
down to the present day, has especially cultivated the magic art. 

1 The moilier about to show her affection) ver. 456. He alludes to the use 
in philtres, or love potions, of the substance called " hippomanes," which waa 
by some said to flow from mares when in a prurient state, but more generally, 
as Pliny the Elder tells us, was thought to be a poisonous excrescence of the 
size of a fig, and of a black colour, which grows on the head of the mare, and 
which the foal at its birth is in the habit of biting off, which if it neglects to 
do, it is not allowed by its mother to suck. Hesiod, however, says, that 
hippomanes was a herb that produced madness in the horses that ate of it. 

* Perithet ly force of tpellt) ver. 457. They are able by muttering 
charms alone to deprive men of their senses. 



a vi. 459-480.] PHARSALIA. 231 

pied binds together, and influence of alluring beauty, they 
attract by the magic whirling of the twisted threads 1 . 
The courses of things are stayed, and, retarded by length- 
ened night, the day stops short. The sky obeys not the 
laws of iiature; and on hearing the spells the headlong 
world is benumbed ; Jupiter, too, urging them on, is 
astounded that the poles of heaven do not go on, impelled 
by the rapid axles. 

At another tune, they fill all >Zrtc<?s with showers, and, 
while the sun is hot, bring down the clouds ; the heavens 
thunder, too, Jupiter not knowing it. By those same words, 
with hair hanging loose, have they scattered abroad far and 
wide soaking clouds and showers. The winds ceasing, the 
sea has swelled ; again, forbidden to be sensible of the 
storms, the south wind provoking it, it has held its peace ; 
and bearing along the ship the sails have swelled against 
the wind. From the steep rock has the torrent hung sus- 
pended ; and the river has run not in the direction in which 
it was descending. The summer has not raised the Nile ; in 
a straight line the Moeander has urged on his waters ; and 
the Arar has impelled headlong 2 the delaying Rhone ; their 
tops lowered, mountains have levelled their ridges. 

Olympus has looked upwards 3 to the clouds, and with no 
sun the Scythian snows have thawed, while the winter was 
freezing. Impelled by the stars, the shores protected, the 
charms of the Haemonian witches have driven Tetliys 

1 By the magic whirling of the hoisted threads) ver. 460. He alludes to 
the use of the " rhombus," or spinning-wheel, in magical incantations, the 
object of which was to regain the affections when lost. ' The spinning-wheel 
was much used in magical incantations, not only among the people of Thessaly 
and Italy, but those of northern and western Europe. The practice was 
probably founded on the supposition of the existence of the so-called threads 
of destiny, and it was the province of the wizard or sorceress, by his or her 
charms, to lengthen or shorten those threads as required. Some think that 
the use of the threads implied that the minds of individuals were to be in- 
fluenced at the will of the enchanter or the person consulting him. See 
the use of the spinning wheel in magical incantations described in the Fasti 
of Ovid, B. ii. 1. 572, et seq., and the Eighth Eclogue of Virgil. 

2 The Arar has impelled headlong) ver. 476. See the First Book, 1. 434. 
The Arar was noted for its slowness, the Rhone for its rapidity. 

* Olympus has looked upwards) ver. 477. Olympus, which towers above 
the clouds, by magical arts is brought beneath them. 



232 PHAESAL1A. [u. vi. 480-505. 

back '. The earth, too, has shaken the axle of her ion- 
moved weight, and, inclining with the effort, has oscillated 
in her nud regions-. The weight of a mass so vast smitten 
by their voice, has gaped open, and has afforded a pros- 
pect through it of the surrounding heavens. Every animal 
powerful for death, and produced to do injury, both fears tin: 
Hannonian arts and supplies them with its deadly qua- 
lities. Them do the ravening tigers and the magnani- 
mous wrath of the lions fawn upon with gentle mouth ; for 
them does the serpent unfold his cold coils, and is ex- 
tended in the frosty field. The knots of the vipers unite, 
their bodies cut asunder; and the snake dies, breathed 
upon by human poison. 

What failing is this of the Gods of heaven in following 
after enchantments and herbs, and what this fear of disre- 
garding them? Of what compact do the bonds keep the 
Deities thus bound ? Is it obligatory, or does it please them 
to obey ? For an unknown piety only do the witches deserve 
this, or by secret threats do they prevail ? Have they this 
power against all the Gods of heaven, or do these imperious 
charms sway but a certain Deity :t , who, whatever he himself 
is compelled, can compel the world, to do ? There, too, for 
the first time were the stars brought down from the head- 
long sky ; and serene Phoebe, beset by the dire influences 
of their words, grew pale and burned with dusky and earthy 
fires, not otherwise than if the earth hindered her from the 
reflection of her brother, and ^nterposed its shade between 
the celestial flames ; and, arrested by spells, she endures 

1 Have driven fethys lack) ver. 479-80. The sea, accustomed to be 
aroused by the influence of the Moon and certain Constellations, such as 
Arcturus, Orion, and the Hyades, is no more influenced by them when the 
Thessalian sorceresses will otherwise. 

2 Has oscillated in Iter mid regions) ver. 480-1. This passage is 
either in a corrupt state, or one to which it is not improbable that the Poet 
himself would have been unable to attach any very definite meaning. 

3 Sway lufa certain Deity) ver. 497. Howe has the following Note here: 
" The Poet seems to allude here to that God whom they called Demogorgon, 
who was the father and creator of all the other Gods ; who, though he himself 
was bound in chains in the lowest hell, was yet so terrible to all the others 
that they could not bear the very mention of his name ; as appears towards 
the end of this Book. Him Lucan supposes to be subject to the power of 
magic, as all the other Deities of what kind soever were to him." 



B. vi. 505-531.] PHARSALIA. 233 

labours so great, until, more nigh, she sends her foam 1 
upon the herbs situate beneath. 

These rites of criminality, these spells of the direful 
race, the wild Erictho 2 has condemned as being of piety 
too extreme, and has applied the polluted art to new cere- 
monies. For to her it is not permitted to place her deadly 
head within a roof or a home in the city ; and she haunts 
the deserted piles, and, the ghosts expelled, takes pos- 
session of the tombs, pleasing to the Gods of Erebus. 
To hear the counsels of the dead, to know the Stygian 
abodes and the secrets of the concealed Pluto, not the 
Gods above, not a life on earth, forbids. 

Leanness has possession of the features of the hag, foul 
with filthiness, and, unknown to a clear sky, her dreadful 
visage, laden with uncombed locks, is beset with Stygian 
paleness. If showers and black clouds obscure the stars, 
then does the Thessalian witch stalk forth from the 
spoiled piles, and try to arrest the lightnings of the night. 
The seeds she treads on of the fruitful corn she burns up, 
and by her breathing makes air noxious that was not deadly. 
before. She neither prays to the Gods of heaven, nor with 
suppliant prayer calls the Deity to her aid, nor does she 
know of the propitiating entrails ; upon the altars she de- 
lights to place funereal flames, and frankincense which she 
has carried off from the lighted pile 3 . 

Her voice now first heard as she demands, the Gods of 
heaven accede to all the wickedness, and dread to hear a 
second address. Souls that live, and still rule their respect- 
ive limbs, she buries in the tomb ; and dgath reluctantly 
creeps on upon those who owe lengthened years to the 
Fates ; the funeral procession turning back, the dead bodies 

1 She sends her foam) ver. 506. It was a belief among the ancients that 
the moon was arrested in her course and brought dosvn upon the earth by 
means of the Thessalian incantations, and that at those times she shed a kind 
of venomous foam upon certain plants, which were consequently much 
sought for, to be applied to magical purposes. 

2 The wild Erictho) ver. 508. Erictho is mentioned as a famous en- 
chantress in the Epistle from Sappho to Phaon, in Ovid's Heroides, 1. 139. 
She is also spoken of by Apuleius as skilled in sepulchral magic. The 
name was probably used to signify an enchantress in general. 

3 Carried off from the lighted pile) ver. 526. In ordinary life it was 
deemed the height of disgrace to be guilty of taking away anything that 
had been placed on the funeral pile. 



234 PHAKSALIA. [B. vi. 532-548- 

she rescues from the tomb ; corpses fly from death. The 
smoking ashes of the young and the burning bones she 
snatches from the midst of the piles, and the very torch 
which the parents have held 1 ; the fragments, too, of the 
funereal bier 2 that fly about in the black smoke, and the 
flowing robes does she collect amid the ashes, and the em- 
bers that smell of the limbs. 

But when corpses are kept within stone a , from which the 
moisture within is taken away, and, the corruption with- 
drawn, the marrow has grown hard ; then does she greedily 
raven upon all the limbs, and bury her hands in the eyes, 
and delight to scoop out the dried-up balls 4 , and gnaw 
the pallid nails 5 of the shrunken hand ; with her mouth 
she tears asunder the halter" and the murderous knots ; the 
bodies as they hang she gnaws, and scrapes the crosses 7 ; 
the entrails, too, smitten by the showers she rends asunder, 
and the parched marrow, the sun's heat admitted thereto. 
Iron fastened into the hands s , and the black conniption of 
the filthy matter that distils upon the limbs, and the slime 

1 Parents have held) ver. 534. It was the duty of the parent to set fire 
to the funeral pile of his children. 

2 Of the funereal Her) ver. 536. The corpse was carried to the funeral 
pile on a couch which was called "feretrum" or "capulus;" but the bodies of 
the poorer classes, or of slaves, were borne on a common kind of bier called 
" sandapila." The couches on which the bodies of the rich were carried 
were sometimes made of ivory and covered with gold and purple. On the 
top of the pile the corpse was laid upon the couch on which it had been car- 
ried, and burnt with it. The "vestes" here mentioned were probably the 
coverings of the funeral couch. 

1 Corpses are kept iriUiin, stone) ver. 538. He alludes to bodies which, 
after the eastern fashion, are preserved as mummies, by drawing the moisture 
out and then preserving them in tombs of stone. 

4 Scoop out the dried-up balls) ver. 542. The practices here imputed 
to the Thessalian enchantress are similar to those of the Ghouls of the East, 
who were said to feast on the bodies of the dead, a practice frequently alluded 
to in the Arabian Nights. 

* And gnaw the pallid nails) ver. 543. The nails of the human hand 
continue to grow after death, and turn of a white hue. 

* Teart asunder the Italter) ver. 543. She gnaws the knot of the noose 
to obtain the body that is hanging, for the purposes of her incantations. 

* And scrapes the crosses) ver. 545. She scrapes off the clotted gore that 
adheres to the crosses on which malefactors hang, and tears out their entrails 
which have been long exposed to the drenching showers. 

* Iron fastened into the hands) ver. 547. The iron nails driven through 
the hands and feet of those fastened to the cross. 



u. TL 548-579.] PHAESALIA. 236 

that has collected, she bears off, and hangs to tlie bodies, as 
the sinews hold fast her bite. 

Whatever carcase, too, is lying upon the bare ground, 
before the beasts and the birds of the air does she sit ; nor 
does she wish to separate the joints with iron and with her 
hands, and about to tear the limbs from their parched jaws, 
she awaits the bites of the wolves. Nor do her hands re- 
frain from murder, if she requires the life-blood, which is 
the first to spring 1 from the divided throat. Nor does she 
shun slaughter, if her rites demand living gore, and her 
funereal tables demand the quivering entrails. So, through 
the wounds of the womb, not the way in which nature invites, 
is the embryo torn out, about to be placed upon the glow- 
ing altars. And as often as she has need of grim and stal- 
wart shades, she herself makes the ghosts ; eveiy kind of 
death among mankind is hi her employ. 

She from the youthful body tears the down of the cheek ; 
she with her left hand- from the dying stripling cuts off the 
hair. Full often, too, at her kinsman's pile has the dire 
Thessalian witch brooded over the dear limbs, and imprinting 
kisses, has both cut off the head, and torn away the cheeks 
pressed with her teeth, and biting off the end of the tongue 
as it cleaves to the dried throat, has poured forth murmurs 
into the cold lips, and has dispatched accursed secrets to 
the Stygian shades. 

When the rumours of the spot brought her to the notice 
of Pompey 3 , amid the depths of the night of the sky, at the 
time when Titan is bringing the midday beneath our earth, 
along the deserted fields he takes his way. The faithful and 
wonted attendants upon his crimes, wandering amid the 
ruined tombs and graves, beheld her afar, sitting upon a lofty 
crag, where Ha3mus, sloping down, extends the Pharsalian 
ridges. She was conning over spells unknown to the ma- 
gicians and the Gods of magic, and was trying charms for 
unwonted purposes. For, fearing lest the shifting warfare 

1 Which is the first to spring) ver. 555. The blood just drawn being 
deemed efficacious in enchantments, she will not scruple to commit murder 
for the sake of obtaining it. 

2 With her left hand) ver. 563. The left hand was especially employed in 
magical operations, as also by thieves in the pursuit of their vocation. 

'* To the notice of Pompey) ver. 570. To Sextus, the son of Pompey. 



236 PHARSALIA. [B. vi. 579-605. 

might remove to another region, and the Emathion land 
be deprived of slaughter so vast, the sorceress has for- 
bidden Philippi 1 , polluted with spells and sprinkled with 
dreadful potions, to transfer the combats, about to claim so 
many deaths as her own, and to enjoy the blood of the 
world ; she hopes to maim the corpses of slaughtered mo- 
narchs 2 , and to turn to herself the ashes of the Hesperian 
race, and the bones of nobles, and to obtain ghosts so 
mighty. This is her pursuit, and her sole study, what she 
is to tear away from the corpse of Magnus when exposed, 
what limbs of Caesar she is to brood over. Her does the 
degenerate offspring of Pompey first address : 

" O thou honor to the Hsemonian females, who art able 
to reveal their fates to nations, and who art able to turn them 
away from their course when about to come to pass, I pray 
thee that it may be permitted me to know the assured end 
which the fortune of war provides. Not the lowest portion 
am I of the Roman multitude ; the most renowned offspring 
of Magnus, either ruler of the world, or heir to a fall 
so great 3 . Smitten with doubts, my mind is in alarm, 
and again is prepared to endure tlie fears that spring from 
certainty. This power do thou withdraw from events, that 
they may not rush on sudden and unseen ; either extort it 
from the Deities, or do thou spare the Gods, and force 
the truth from the shades below. Unlock the Elysian 
abodes, and Death herself, called forth 4 , compel to confess 
to thee whom of us it is that she demands. Not mean is 
the task ; it is worthy for even thee to have a care to seek 
which way inclines the hazard of destinies so mighty." 

The impious Thessalian witch rejoices at the mention of 

1 Tlie sorceress has forbidden Philippi) ver. 582. The Poet again commits 
the same mistake as in B. i. 1. 675, and other places, in confounding Philippi, 
a town of Thrace, with Pharsalia in Thessaly. 

8 Corpses of slaughtered monarchs) ver. 584. Who had come to the assist- 
ance of Pompey ; see B. vii. 1. 227. 

3 Heir to a fall so great) ver. 595. It must be remembered that Sextns 
was only a younger son ; but if he was a person of the character here de- 
picted by Lucan, he would not improbably be guilty of misrepresentation. 

4 Death herself, called forth) ver. 601. He speaks of Death here as a 
Divinity. She was worshipped by the Greeks under the name of Thanatos. 
Sacrifice was probably offered to this Divinity, but no Temples of Death are 
mentioned by the ancient writers. 



B. vi. 605-634.] PHARSALIA. 237 

her fame thus spread abroad, and answers on the other 
hand : 

" O youth, if thou wouldst have influenced more humhle 
destinies, it had been easy to force the reluctant Gods 
to any action thou mightst wish. To my skill it is granted, 
when with their beams the constellations have urged on death, 
to interpose delays l ; and although every star would make a 
man aged, by drugs do we cut short his years in the 
midst. But together does the chain of causes work down- 
ward from the first origin of the world, and all the fates 
are struggling, if thou shouldst wish to change anything, 
and the human race stands subject to a single blow; then do 
we, the Thessalian throng, confess, Fortune has the greater 
might. But if thou art content to learn the events before- 
hand, paths easy and manifold will lie open to truth ; earth, 
and sky, and Chaos 2 , and seas, and plains, and the 
rocks of Rhodope, will converse with us. But it is easy, 
since there is a supply so vast of recent deaths, to raise 
a single body from the Emathian plains, that, with a 
clear voice, the lips of a corpse just dead and warm 
may utter their sounds, and no dismal ghost, the limbs 
scorched by the sun, may send forth indistinct screechings." 

Thus she says ; and, the shades of night redoubled by her 
art, wrapped as to her direful head in a turbid cloud, she 
wanders amid the bodies of the slain, exposed, sepulchres 
being denied. Forthwith the wolves take to flight, their 
talons loosened, the birds fly unfed, while the Thessalian 
witch selects her prophet, and, examining the marrow 
cold in death, finds the fibres of the stiffened lungs 
standing without a wound 3 , and in the dead body 
seeks a voice. Now stand in doubt destinies full many of 
men who have been slain, which one she is to choose to 
recall to the world above. If she had attempted to raise 

1 To interpose delays) ver. 608-9. She can cut short or lengthen the 
lives of individual men at her pleasure, despite the Fates; but over the 
destinies of states she can exercise no influence. 

8 And sky, and Chaos) ver. 617. "Chaos" here means Tartarus, or the 
place of departed spirits. She enumerates the different classes of magic arts : 
geomancy, aeromancy, necromancy, hydromancy, and soothsaying derived 
from inspection of the entrails of animals. 

a Standing wit/tout a wound) ver. 630. She seeks the body of a person 
recently slain, in which the lungs are uninjured. 



238 PHARSAL1A. 

whole armies from the plains, and to restore them to the 
war, the laws of Erebus would have yielded, and a people 
dragged forth by the powerful miscreant from Stygian 
Avernus, would have mingled in fight. 

A body selected at length with pierced throat she takes, 
and, a hook being inserted with funereal ropes, the 
wretched carcase is dragged over rocks, over stones, 
destined to live once again ' ; and beneath the lofty crags 
of the hollowed mountain, which the dire Erictho has 
destined for her rites, it is placed. 

Downward sloping, not far from the black caverns of 
Pluto, the ground precipitately descends, which a wood 
covers, pale with its drooping foliage, and with no lofty 
tops looking upwards to the heavens, and a yew-tree 
shades, not pervious to the sun. Within is squalid dark- 
ness, and mouldiness pallid within the caves amid the 
lengthened gloom ; never, unless produced by charms, does 
it receive the light. Not within the jaws of Teenarus 2 , 
the baleful limit of the hidden world, and of our own, 
does the air settle thus stagnant ; whither the sovereigns of 
Tartarus would not fear' to send forth the shades. For 
although the Thessalian witch uses violence against des- 
tiny, it is matter of doubt whether she beholds the Stygian 
ghosts because she has dragged them thither 4 , or whether 
because she has descended to Tartarus. 

A dress, of various colours and fury-like with varied 
garb, is put on by her; and her locks removed, her fea- 
tures are revealed, and, bristling, with wreaths of vipers 
her hair is fastened round. When she perceives the 

1 Destined to live once again) ver. 640. Destined to live for the purpose of 
answering her questions as to the future. 

4 The jaws of Tamarus) ver. 648. Taenarus was the name of a cavern at 
the foot of the Malean promontory in Laconia ; it emitted powerful mephitic 
vapours, and through it Hercules was said to have dragged Cerberus from the 
Infernal Regions. 

3 The sovereigns of Tartarus vould not fear) Ter. 650. Her cave is go 
gloomy, fetid, and dismal, that the rulers of Tartarus would not object to 
the ghosts, their subjects, taking up their abode there, it being no way prefer- 
able to their own realms. 

4 Because she has dragged them thither) ver. 652. If she evokes a ghost 
by her magic rites, it is matter of doubt whether she has really brought 
the spirit from hell, or whether in inhabiting her cave she has not really de- 
scended to hell herself. 



B. vi. 658-673.] PHARSALIA. 239 

youth's attendants alarmed, and himself trembling, and, 
casting down his eyes with looks struck with horror, 
she says : 

" Banish the fears conceived in your timid mind ; now 
anew, now in its genuine form shall life be restored, that 
even tremblers may endure to hear him speak. But if I 
can show the Stygian lakes ', and the shores that resound 
with flames ; if, I being present, the Eumenides 2 can be 
beheld, and Cerberus shaking his necks shaggy with ser- 
pents, and the Giants chained with their hands to their 
backs, what dread is there, cowards, to behold the fright- 
ened ghosts?" 

Then hi the first place does she fill his breast, opened 
by fresh wounds, with reeking blood, and she bathes his 
marrow with gore, and plentifully supplies venom from 
the moon :1 . Here is mingled whatever, by a monstrous 
generation, nature has produced. Not the foam of dogs 
to which water is an object of dread, not the entrails of the 
lynx 4 , not the excrescence 5 of the direful hyaena is wanting, 
and the marrow of the stag that has fed upon serpents"; 

1 The Stygian lakes) ver. 662. He alludes to Pyriphlegethon, the burning 
Lake of hell. 

a The Eumenides) ver. 664. The name "Eumenides," in the Greek, literally 
signifies " the well-meaning" or "propitiated Goddesses." This was a euphe- 
mism given to the Furies, because the superstitious were afraid to mention 
them by their real names, and was said to have been first given them after 
the acquittal of Orestes by the court of the Areopagus, when their anger 
had become soothed. 

3 Venom from, the moon) ver. 669. See the Note to 1. 506. 

4 Not the entrails of the lynx) ver. 672. It is not improbable that the 
Scholiast rightly suggests that the popular superstition is here alluded to 
which believed that the urine of the lynx hardens into a precious stone. 
Ovid says, in the Metamorphoses, B. xv. 1. 413, et seq. : " Conquered India 
presented her lynxes to Bacchus crowned with clusters ; and, as they tell, 
whatever the bladder of these discharges is changed into stone and hardens 
by contact with the air." Pliny says, that this becomes hard and turns into 
gems like the carbuncle, being of a fiery tint, and that the stone has the 
name of "lyncurium." Beckmann, in his History of Inventions, thinks that 
this was probably the jacinth or hyacinth, while others suppose it to have 
been tourmaline or transparent amber. 

5 The excrescence) ver. 672. " Nodus." This word probably means the 
spine, or the upper part of it which joins the neck. Pliny the Elder tells 
us that the neck is fastened to, or, rather, forms part of, the back-bone of the 
hyaena. 

Fed upon serpents) ver. 673. It was a superstition among the an- 



240 PHARSALIA. [u. vi. 674-681. 

not the sucking fish, that holds back the ship 1 in the 
midst of the waves, while the eastern breeze stretches the 
rigging ; the eyes of dragons, too 2 , and the stones that re- 
sound ', warmed beneath the brooding bird ; not the winged 
serpent 4 of the Arabians, and the viper produced in the 
Bad Sea, the guardian of the precious shell s ; or the 
slough of the horned serpent 6 of Libya that still survives ; 
or the ashes of the Phoenix 7 , laid upon an eastern altar. 
With this, after she has mingled abominations, vile, 

cients that deer when grown old hare the power of drawing serpents from 
their holes with their breath, which they destroy with their horns, and then 
eat, on which they become young again. 

1 That holds lack t/ie ship) ver. 674. The " echeneis remora," or sucking 
fish, was supposed, by sticking to the keel or rudder of a vessel in sail, to be 
able to stop its course. Ovid says, in his Halieuticon, 1. 99, " There i, too, 
the little sucking-fish, wondrous to tell 1 a vast obstruction to ships." 

' The eyes of dragons, too) ver. 675. It was a notion that those who had 
their eyes anointed with a mixture made from serpents' eyes beaten up with 
honey were proof against the sight of nocturnal spectres. 

3 The stones that resound) ver. 676. He alludes to the aetites or eagle- 
Stone, which was said to be found in the nest of the eagle ; by whose incu- 
bation when wanned it exploded with a loud noise. Se Pliny's Natural 
History, B. ix. c. 3, and B. xxxvi. c. 21. 

4 Not the winged serpent) ver. 677. He may either mean a winged ser- 
pent, tho existence of which was currently believed in the East, or may 
allude to the " jaculus," which he again mentions in the Ninth Book, and 
which Pliny, in his Eighth Book, c. 23, speaks of as darting upon passers-by 
from the branches of trees. 

4 Guardian of tlie precious shell) ver. 678. It was supposed that there 
were serpents upon the shores of the Red Sea that watched the shells of the 
oysters in which the pearls are inclosed. 

6 Slough of the horned serjtent) ver. 679. The cerastes or horned serpent 
of Africa is again mentioned in the Ninth Book. 

7 Or t/ie ashes of tlie Phoenix) ver. 680. This allusion to the fabulous bird, 
called the Phoenix, will be best explained by the account of Ovid, in the Me- 
tamorphoses, B. xv. 1. 303, et seq. : " The Assyrians call it the Phoenix. It 
lives not on corn or grass, but on drops of frankincense and the juices of the 
amomum. This bird, when it has completed the five ages of its life, with its 
talons and its crooked beak constructs for itself a nest in the branches of a 
holm-oak, or on the top of a quivering palm. As soon as it has strewed on this 
cassia and ears of sweet spikenard, and bruised cinnamon, with yellow myrrh, 
it lays itself down on it, and finishes its life in the midst of odours. They 
eay that thence, from the body of its parent, is reproduced a little Phoenix, 
which is destined to live as many years. When time has given it strength, 
and it is able to bear the weight, it lightens the branches of the lofty tree of the 
burden of the nest, and dutifully carries both its own cradle and the sepulchre 
of its parent ; and having reached the city of Hyperion through the yielding 
air, it lays it down before the sacred doors in the Temple of Hyperion." 



B. vi. 681-700.] PIIARSALIA. 241 

and possessing no names 1 , she added leaves steeped in 
accursed spells, and herbs upon which, when shooting up, 
her direful mouth had spat, and whatever poisons she her- 
self gave unto the world ; then, a voice, more potent than 
all drugs to charm the Gods of Lethe, first poured forth its 
murmurs, discordant, and differing much from the human 
tongue. The bark of dogs has she, and the howling of 
wolves ; she sends forth the voice in which the scared owl, 
in which the screech of the night, complain, in which wild 
beasts shriek and yell, in which the serpent hisses, and the 
Availing of the waves dashed upon the rocks ; the sounds, 
too, of the woods, and the thunders of the bursting cloud. 
Of objects so many there is the voice in one. Then after- 
wards in a Hsemonian chaunt she unfolds the rest, and 
her voice penetrates to Tartarus : 

" Eumenides, and Stygian fiends, and penalties of the 
guilty, and Chaos, eager to confound innumerable worlds ; 
and thou, Euler of the earth ~, whom the wrath of the Gods, 
deferred for lengthened ages, does vex ; Styx, and the 
Elysian fields, which no Thessalian sorceress is deserving of; 
Persephone, who dost detest heaven and thy mother :J , and 

1 And possessing no names) ver. 681. There is a similar passage in the 
Metamorphoses of Ovid, where he is describing the incantations of Medea, 
]?. vii. 1. 270 : " She adds, too, hoar-frost gathered at night by the light of 
the moon, and the ill-boding wings of a screech-owl together with its flesh, 
and the entrails of a two-formed wolf that was wont to change its appearance 
of a wild beast into that of a man. Nor is there wanting there the thin 
scaly slough of the Cinyphian water-snake and the liver of the long-lived 
stag ; to which, besides, she adds the bill and head of a crow that had sus- 
tained an existence of nine ages. When with these and a hundred other 
things without a name, the barbarian princess has completed the medicine 
prepared for the mortal body, with a branch of the peaceful olive, long since 
driod up, she stirs them all up, and blends the lowest ingredients with the 
highest." 

2 Thou, Ruler of the earth) ver. 697. Dis, or Pluto ; to whom was allotted 
the government of the Earth, and the regions beneath, when his brother 
Jupiter received that of Heaven and Neptune that of the Sea. The passage 
may either mean that Pluto repines at the lengthened existence of the Deities 
who do not through death descend to his realms, or that he is tired of the 
prolonged existence which he in common with the other Gods enjoys. 

' J Detest heaven and thy mother) ver. 699. She preferred to remain with 
her husband Pluto in the Infernal Regions to returning to heaven and rejoin- 
ing her mother Ceres ; on which it was agreed that she should spend six 
months in the year with Pluto and six months with Ceres. The story of the 

B 



242 PHARSALIA. [B. vi. 700-714. 

who art the lowest form of our Hecate 1 , through whom the 
ghosts and 1 3 have the intercourse of silent tongues ; thou 
porter, too :| , of the spacious abodes, who dost scatter our 
entrails before the savage dog ; and you. Sisters, about to 
handle the threads 4 renewed, and thou, O ferryman of the 
burning stream, now, aged man, tired with the ghosts re- 
turning to me ; listen to my prayers, if you sufficiently I 
invoke with mouth accui-sed and denied, if, never fasting 
from human entrails, I repeat these charms, if full oft I 
have given you the teeming breasts, and have smothered 
your offerings* with warm brains; if any infant, when I 
have placed its head and entrails on your dishes, had been 
destined to live 6 ; listen to my entreaty. A soul we ask 
for, that has not lain hid hi the caves of Tartarus, and 
accustomed long to darkness, but one just descending, the 

rape of Proserpine is related in the Fasti of Ovid, B. iv. 1. 389-620, and in 
the Metamorphoses, B. v. 1. 537, et seq. 

1 Lowest form of our Hecate) ver. 700. " Pars ultima." The meaning of 
this passage has caused much discussion, but it seems to imply that Proser- 
pine is the third form or aspect of the Goddess called Hecate on earth, and 
prohably Diana in heaven. By the use of the word " nostrae" the sorceress 
seems to imply that she worships the infernal Goddess Proserpine under 
the name of Hecate. Ovid, in the Metamorphoses, B. viL, represents her as 
the daughter of Perses, who, according to Diodonis Siculus, was the son of 
Phcebus and the brother of Metes; and as, on marrying her uncle, the 
mother of Circe, Medea, and Absyrtus. This person, however, can hardly 
be considered identical with the Goddess who, under the form of Hecate, 
was considered the patroness of magic. 

3 Through whom the ghosts and I) ver. 701. Who aids her in receiving 
the secret communications from the ghosts of the dead. 

3 Thou porter, too] ver. 702. This passage has caused much discussion ; 
but it seems most probable that the " janitor " or " porter " of hell here al- 
luded to is Mercury, whose office it was to deliver over the bodies of the 
dead to Cerberus, the three-headed dog, stationed at the entrance of hell, 
whose name, according to some, was derived from xpiat Qefa, " feeding upon 
flesh." 

* About to handle the threads) ver. 703. She addresses the Fates, who are 
about to spin the threads of existence over again for the person whose body 
is going to be restored to life. 

* Have smothered your offerings) ver. 709. Those parts of the animals 
which were burnt on the altars of the Gods were called " prosicia;,'' " prc- 
secta," or " ablegmina." 

* Had been destined to live) ver. 710. She means, if she has torn away 
any infant from the womb for sacrifice to her, which otherwise might have 
lived. 



B. vi. 714-740.] PHARSALIA. 243 

light but lately withdrawn ; and which still delays at the 
very chasm of pallid Orcus. Although it may listen to 
these spells, it shall come to the shades once again 1 . Let 
the ghost of one hut lately our soldier repeat the destinies 
of Pompey to the son of the chieftain, if the civil warfare 
deserves well at your hands." 

When, having said these things, she lifted up her head 
and her foaming lips, she beheld the ghost of the extended 
corpse standing by, dreading the lifeless limbs and the hated 
place of its former confinement. It was dreading to go into 
the gaping breasts, and the entrails torn with a deadly wound. 
Ah wretch ! from whom unrighteously the last privilege of 
death is snatched, to be able to die * ! Erictho is surprised 
that this delay has been permitted by the Fates, and, enraged 
with death, with living serpents she beats the unmoved 
body ; and through the hollow clefts of the earth, which 
with her charms she opens, she barks forth to the shades 
below, and breaks the silence of the realms : 

" Tisiphone, and Megsera 3 , heedless of my voice, are ye 
not driving the wretched soul with your ruthless whips 
through the void space of Erebus ? This moment under 
your real name 4 will I summon you forth, and, Stygian 
bitches, will leave you hi the light of the upper world ; 
amid graves will I follow you, amid funereal rites, your 
watcher ; from the tombs will I expel you, from all the urns 
will I drive you away. And thee, Hecate, squalid with thy 
pallid form, will I expose to the Gods, before whom in false 
shape with other features thou art wont to come, and I will 
forbid thee to conceal the visage of Erebus. I will disclose, 
damsel of Enna 5 , under the boundless bulk of the earth, 

1 Shall come to tJie shades once again) ver. 716. She promises that 
when the reanimated corpse shall have done what she wishes, the spirit shall 
return to the shades once for all. 

3 To be able to die) ver. 725. " Non posse mori;" the "non" is redundant 
here. 

3 Tisiphone, and Mtgcera) ver. 730. Tisiphone, Alecto, and Megsera were 
the names of the three Eumenides or Furies. 

4 Under your real name) ver. 732. She will not call them Eumenides or 
Erinnys, by which names they were usually called among mortals, but will 
call them by the titles used in incantations, " Stygian bitches." 

5 Damsel of Enna) ver. 740. He calls Proserpine " Ennsea," because she 
was carried off by Pluto on the plains of Enna in Sicily. The story was, 

E 2 



244 I'lIARSALIA. [B. vi. 740-757. 

what feasts are detaining thee, upon what compact thou 
dost love the gloomy sovereign, to what corruption having 
submitted, thy parent was unwilling to call thee back l . 

"Against thee, most evil ruler of the world 2 , into 
thy burst caverns will I send the sun : ', and with 
sudden daylight thou shalt be smitten. Are you going 
to obey ? Or will he have to be addressed, by whom never, 
when named 4 , the shaken earth fails to tremble 5 , who 
beholds the Gorgon exposed to view", and with his stripes 
chastises the quailing Erinnys, who occupies depths of 
Tartarus by you unseen ; in whose power you are 7 , ye Gods 
above ; who by the Stygian waves forswears." 8 

Forthwith the clotted blood grows warm, and nourishes 
the blackened wounds, and runs into the veins and the ex- 
tremities of the limbs. Smitten beneath the cold breast, the 
lungs palpitate ; and a new life creeping on is mingled with 
the marrow so lately disused. Then does every joint throb ; 
the sinews are stretched; and not by degrees throughout 
the limbs does the dead body lift itself from the earth, and 
it is spurned by the ground, and raised erect at the same 

that on arriving in the Infernal regions she ate the grains of a pomegranate, 
on which Jupiter forbade her return from hell without the sanction of Pluto. 
See the Note to 1. 699 and the passage of Ovid there referred to. 

' Was unwilling to call thee lack) ver. 742. " Why thy parent Ceres was 
unwilling (or, rather, unable) to procure thy return to the world above." 

2 Most evil rider of the world) ver. 743. She calls Pluto the " pessimus 
arbiter mundi ;" the most evil sharer in the world, in allusion to the dismal 
regions of hell falling to his share. 

J Will I send (he sun) ver. 743. Titana. Literally " Titan," one of 
the epithets of the Sun. 

4 By whom never, tchfn named) ver. 745. He probably alludes to the ter- 
rible God Demogorgon, who is mentioned in the Note to 1. 497. One of the 
Scholiasts says that he was the first and most powerful of the Gods, and was 
the father of Omago, Omago of Ccelus, and Cielus of Saturn. Demiurgus 
was another name of this mysterious Divinity. 

4 The shaken earth fails to tremble) ver. 746. On the very mention of 
whose name earthquakes ensue. 

6 Who beholds the Gorgon exposed to view) ver. 746. It was the fate of 
all who looked upon the head of the Gorgon Medusa to be changed into 
stone : from this the God here alluded to alone was exempt. 

7 In wliose power you are) ver. 748. " Cujus vos estis." Literally 
" whose" or " of whom you are." 

8 By the Stygian waves forswears) ver. 749. "Who is not afraid to swear 
falsely by the river Styx, a thing which the other Gods dread to do. 



B. vi. 757-787.] PHARSALIA. 245 

instant. The eyes with their apertures distended wide are 
opened. In it not as yet is there the face of one living, 
but of one now dying. His paleness and his stiffness re- 
main, and, brought back to the world, he is astounded. 
But his sealed lips resound Avith no murmur. A voice 
and a tongue to answer alone are granted unto him. 

" Tell me," says the Thessalian witch, " for a great re- 
ward, what I command tliee ; for, having spoken the truth, 
by the Hsemonian arts I will set thee free in all ages of the 
world ; with such a sepulchre will I grace thy limbs, with 
such wood will I burn them with Stygian spells, that thy 
charmed ghost shall hearken to no magicians. Of such great 
value be it to have lived once again ; neither charms nor 
drugs shall presume to take away from thee the sleep of 
Lethe prolonged 1 , death being bestowed by me. Obscure re- 
sponses befit the tripods and the prophets of the Gods ; well 
assured he may depart whoever asks the truth of the shades, 
and boldly approaches the oracles of relentless death. Spare 
not, I pray. Give things their names, give the places, give 
the words by which the Fates may converse with me." 

She added a charm as well, by which she gave the ghost 
the power to know whatever she consulted him upon. 
Sad, the tears running down, the corpse thus said : 

" Called back from the heights of the silent shores I surely 
have not seen the sad threads of the Destinies ; but, what 
from all the shades it has been allowed me to learn, 
fierce discord agitates the Koman ghosts 2 , and impious 
arms disturb the rest of hell. Coming from different spots, 
some chieftains have left the Elysian abodes, and some the 
gloomy Tartarus ; what fate is preparing these have disclosed. 
Sad was the countenance of the spirits of the blessed. 
The Decii 3 I beheld, both son and father, the souls that 
expiated the warfare, and Camillus weeping 4 , and the Curii 6 ; 

1 Sleep of Letlie prolonged) ver. 769. Lethe was one of the rivers of 
hell ; the waters of which being drunk induced forgetfulness. 

2 Discord agitates the Roman ghosts) ver. 780. Even the shades of the 
Romans are at discord among themselves, belonging to the different factions. 

3 The Decii) ver. 785. See B. ii. 1. 308, and the Note to the passage. 

* And Camillus weeping) ver. 786. See B. xi. 1. 545, and the Note to 
the passage. 
. And the Curii) ver. 787. See B. i. 1. 169. 



248 PHARSALIA. [a VL 787-805. 

Sulla, too, Fortune, complaining of thee 1 . Scipio is de- 
ploring his hapless descendant-, doomed to perish in the 
Libyan lands. The elder Cato, the foe of Carthage 3 , be- 
moans the destiny of his nephew who will not be a slave. 

" Thee, Brutus, first Consul, the tyrants expelled 4 , 
alone rejoicing did I behold among the pious shades. 
Threatening Catiline, his chains burst asunder and broken, 
exults, the fierce Marii, too, and the Cethegi with their 
bared arms 5 . I beheld the Drusi exulting, names be- 
loved by the populace"; the Gracchi, exorbitant with their 
laws, and who dared such mighty exploits. Hands, bound 
with the eternal knots of iron, and in the dungeon of Dis, 
clap in applause, and the guilty multitude demands the 
fields of the blessed. The possessor of the empty realms is 
opening the pallid abodes, and is sharpening rocks torn off, 
and adamant hard with its chains, and is preparing punish- 
ment for the conqueror. Take back with thee, O youth, 
this comfort, that in their placid retreat the shades await 
thy father and thy house, and in the serene quarter of the 
realms are preparing room for Pompey. 

1 Fortune, complaining of thee) ver. 787. He alludes to the successful 
career of Sulla, who attributed his prosperity to the Goddess Fortuna, and 
took the name of Felix after the death of the younger Marius, and called his 
son Faustus and his daughter Fausta. He complains of Fortune because the 
Patrician faction which he had headed is being worsted by the anus of 
Csesar. 

* Deploring his hapless descendant) ver. 788. " Scipio Africanus the elder 
deplores the fate of his descendant Metellus Scipio, who is doomed to fall by 
the sword in Africa." See the Note to 1. 311. 

3 Elder Cato, ike foe of Carthage) ver. 789. Cato, the Censor, or the 
Elder, the implacable enemy of Carthage, is grieved for the destiny of his 
preat grandson Porcitis Cato, who is doomed to fall by his own sword at 
Utica. See 1. 311 and B. ii. 1. 238. 

* First Consul, the tyrants expelled) ver. 791. L. Junius Brutus, the first 
Consul, on the expulsion of the Tarquins, is alone glad, inasmuch as the 
tyrant Caesar is destined to fall, and in part by means of his descendants 
Marcus and Decius Brutus. 

* TJie Cetlteyi with, their bared arms) ver. 794. See B. ii. 1. 543, and the 
Note to the passage. 

6 The Drusi exulting, names beloved by Ute populace) ver. 795. He probably 
alludes to M. Livius Drusus, who, to conciliate the Roman populace, renewed 
several of the propositions and imitated the measures of the Gracchi. He 
proposed and carried laws for the distribution of corn, or for its sale at a low 
price, and for the assignment of the public lands. 



B. vi. 805-826.] PHAESALIA, 247 

"And let not the glory of a short life cause thee anxiety; 
the hour will come that is to mingle all chieftains alike. 
Make ye haste to die, and proud with your high spirit 
go down though from humble graves, and tread under 
foot the ghosts of Romans deified 1 . It is sought to know 
which tomb the wave of the Nile, and which that of the 
Tiber is to wash, and only is the combat among the 
chieftains as to ~ their place of burial. Seek not thou to 
know thy own destiny ; the Fates, while I am silent, will 
declare; a prophet more sure, Pompey himself, thy sire, 
will declare all things to thee ;) in the Sicilian field? ; he, 
too, uncertain whither he shall invite thee, whence warn thee 
away, what regions to bid thee avoid, what Constellations 
of the world. Wretched men, dread Europe, and Libya, and 
Asia 4 ; according to your triumphs ft does Fortune distribute 
your sepulchres. wretched house, nothing throughout the 
whole earth wilt thou behold more safe than Emathia." 8 

After he has thus revealed the Fates, gloomy with speech- 
less features he stands, and demands death once again. 
Magic incantations are needed, and drugs, that the carcase 
may fall, and the Fates are unable to restore the soul to 
themselves, the law of hell now once broken. Then, with 
plenteous wood she builds up a pile ; the dead man comes 
to the fires; the youth placed upon the lighted heap 

' The ghosts of Romans deified) ver. 809. He alludes to the deification 
of Julius Caesar, the victorious opponent of Porapey, and that of the Roman 
Emperors his successors. This line must certainly have been penned in a 
hostile spirit towards the Emperor Nero. 

2 Is the combat among the chieftains as to) ver. 811. This is somewhat 
similar to the line in Gray's Elegy : 

" The paths of glory lead but to the grave." 

3 Will declare all things to thee) ver. 814. He probably alludes to a 
future scene which was to have been depicted in his Poem, in which Pompey 
was to appear to his son Sextiis in his Sicilian campaign, and warn him of 
his approaching destruction : the Poem being unfinished comes to an end 
long antecedent to that period. 

4 Dread Europe, and Libya, and Asia) ver. 817. The meaning is, 
" Your father shall die in Egypt in Africa, your brother at Munda in Spain, 
and you yourself at Miletus in Asia Minor." 

6 According to your triumphs) ver. 818. Pompey the elder enjoyed 
triumphs for his campaign against Sertorius in Spain, against Mithridates in 
Asia Minor, and for his successes in Egypt 

6 More safe than Eniathia) ver. 819. " From Thessaly you will escape 
alive, from other regions you will not." 



248 PHARSA.LIA. (B. vt 826-830. 

Erictho leaves, permitting him at length to die ; and she 
goes attending Sextus to his father's camp. 

The heavens wearing the aspect of light, until they 
brought their footsteps safe within the tents, the night. 
commanded to withhold the day 1 , afforded its dense shades. 

1 Commanded to withhold the day) ver. 830. The meaning is, that tho 
night was prolonged by Erictho, that Sextus might have time to return to his 
father's camp unobserved. 



249 
BOOK THE SEVENTH. 

CONTENTS. 

The vision of Pompey the night before the battle of Pharsalia is described, 
1-44. His soldiers demand to be led forth to battle, 45-61. Cicero's 
address to Pompey on this occasion, 62-85. Pompey's answer, 85-123. 
The soldiers prepare for battle, 124-150. Portentous signs appear, 151- 
184. Distant nations are made aware of the impending catastrophe, 185- 
213. The army of Pompey is described, 214-234. Caesar's delight on 
seeing them preparing for battle, 235-249. He harangues his soldiers, 
250-329. They prepare for battle, 330-336. Pompey harangues his 
army, 337-384. The Poet laments the approaching slaughter, 385-459. 
The soldiers hesitate on both sides on recognizing each other, 460-469. 
Crastinus, a soldier in Caesar's army, commences the battle, 470-475. 
The beginning of the battle is described, 476-505. Caesar attacks 
the army of Pompey in flank, and the cavalry is repulsed, 506-544. 
The centre of Pompey's army offers a stronger resistance, 545-550. The 
Poet is averse to describe the scenes of horror there perpetrated, 551-556. 
Caesar exhorts his men to deeds of valour, 557-585. It is the design 
of Brutus to slay Caesar, 586-596. Multitudes of the Patricians are slain, 
among whom is Domitius, 597-616. The Poet laments the carnage, 617- 
646. Pompey takes to flight, 647-679. The Poet apostrophizes Pompey, 
680-711. Pompey comes to Larissa, where he is welcomed by the inha- 
bitants, 712-727. Caesar takes possession of the enemy's camp, 728-786. 
The bodies of Pompey's troops lie unburied, a prey to birds and wild beasts, 
787-846. The Poet concludes with imprecations against the scene of 
such horrors, 847-872. 

NEVER more tardy from the ocean than the eternal laws 
demand, did mournful Titan speed on his steeds along 
the heavens; and he checked his chariot, as the skies 
whirled him along. He was hoth ready to endure eclipse, 
and the grievance of light withdrawn; and he attracted 
clouds, not as food for his flames 1 , but lest he might shine 
serenely upon the regions of Thessaly. 

But the night, the last portion of fortunate existence 
for Magnus, deceived his anxious slumhers with vain pros- 
pects. For he seemed to himself, in the seat of the Pom- 

1 Not as food for his flames) ver. 5. It was the notion of some of the 
ancient philosophers, and particularly of Heraclitus and the Stoics, that the 
heat of the sun was nourished by the moisture of the clouds. 



250 I'lIARSALIA. [B. vn. 9-27. 

peian Theatro 1 , to behold forms innumerable of tbe com- 
monalty of Rome, and his own name raised with joyous 
voices to the stare, and the resounding tiers'* contending 
in applause. Such were the looks and the shouts of the 
applauding populace, when formerly, a young man, and at 
the period of his first triumph, after the nations which 
the rushing Iberus surrounds were subdued, and the arms 
which the flying Sertorius a urged on, the West having been 
reduced to peace, revered as much in his white toga 4 as in 
that which adorned the chariot, the Senate giving applause, 
he sat, as yet but a Roman knight 

Whether, at the end of successes, anxious for the future, 
sleep flew back to joyous times, or whether, prophesying, 
by its wonted perversions, things contrary to what is seen, 
it bore the omens of great woe ; or whether to thee, for- 
bidden any more to behold thy paternal abodes, Fortune in 
this fashion presented Rome. Break not his slumbers, ye 
sentinels of the camp ; let no trumpet resound in his ears. 
The rest of the morrow, direful, and saddened with the 
image of the day, will from every quarter bring the blood- 

1 In the seat of the P&mpeian T/ttatre) ver. 9. Pompey erected the first 
Stone Theatre at Rome, near the Campus Martius. It was of great magnifi- 
cence and was built after the model of that of Mitylene in the isle of Lesbos, 
but on a much larger scale, as it was able to contain 40,000 persons. 

8 And the resounding tiers) ver. 11. " Cuneos," literally " wedges." The 
tiers or sets of seats in the theatres of Greece and Rome were divided into 
a number of compartments, which converging, resembled cones from which 
the tops are cut off ; hence they were termed **<5if, and in Latin "cunei," 
or " wedges." It was the custom for the populace to applaud such of the 
great as were their favourites on their entrance into the theatre. Plutarch 
relates that the night before the battle of Fharsalia Pompey dreamed that as 
he went into the theatre the people received him with great applause, and 
that he himself was adorning the Temple of Venus Victrir, or " the Victo- 
rious," with spoils. He was partly encouraged and partly disheartened 
by this dream ; but the latter feeling was predominant, inasmuch as he feared 
lest the adorning a place consecrated to Venus should be performed by Caesar 
with the spoils taken from himself, who boasted of being descended from that 
Goddess through the line of lulus or Ascanius. 

3 The arms which tJte flying Sertorius) ver. 16. In allusion to his triumph 
over Sertorius, the leader of the Marian party in Spain. See B. ii. 1. 549, 
and the Note to the passage, and the Note to B. rii. 1. 25. 

4 In his white toga) ver. 17. The white toga, or the "toga pura," was 
worn by the Senators in the time of peace, while a robe of purple covered with 
embroidery was worn by the victorious general in the triumphal chariot. 
The family of Pompey was of the Equestrian order. 



B. vii. 27-45.] PHARSALIA. 251 

stained ranks, from every side the war. Whence canst thou 
then obtain the slumbers of the populace 1 and a happy 
night? O blessed, if even thus thy Home could behold 
thee! 

Would that, Magnus, the Gods of heaven had granted a 
single day to thy country and to thee, on which either, 
assured of destiny, might have enjoyed the last blessing of 
affection so great 2 . Thou goest as though destined to die 3 
in the Ausonian city. She, conscious to herself of her 
assured wishes in behalf of thee, has not believed that this 
evil ever existed in destiny; that thus she is to lose the 
tomb even of Magnus. Thee, with mingling griefs, would 
both old men and youths have bewailed, and the child un- 
taught. The female throng, their locks dishevelled, would, 
as at the funeral of Brutus 4 , have torn their breasts. Now 
even, although they may fear the darts of the unscrupulous 
victor, although Cffisar himself may bring word of thy 
death, they will weep ; but, while they are bringing frankin- 
cense, while laurel wreaths to the Thunderer 5 . O wretched 
people, whose groans devour their griefs ! who equally lament 
thee in the Theatre no longer full ! 

The sunbeams had conquered the stars, when, with the 



1 Obtain the slumbers of the populace) ver. 28. " Unde pares somnos 
populi, noctemque beatamV' The Commentators are at variance as to what 
is the meaning of this line, and it is undecided whether "pares" is a verb or 
an adjective, and whether the sentence should be read with or without a note 
of interrogation. It seems, however, most likely that "pares" is a verb ; in 
which case the sentence may either mean " How, Pompey, are you to enjoy 
in future the placid slumbers common to the lower classes V or, " How, Pom- 
pey, are yon to provide placid slumbers for your harassed country?" 

2 The last blessing of affection so great) ver. 32. " Would that, aware of 
your approaching end, the Fates had granted one day on which you and the 
Boman populace might have bid each other an eternal farewell." 

3 As though destined to die) ver. 33. That is, " in your present dream." 

4 As at the funeral of Brutvs) ver. 39. The matrons of Rome mourned a 
whole year for Lucius Junius Brutus, the avenger of Lucretia, who expelled 
the Tarquins from the city. 

* Laurel wreaths to the Thunderer) ver. 42. " They will now weep for 
you though forced to carry frankincense and garlands to the Capitol in 
honor of the triumph of the victorious Caesar." The Poet covertly implies 
the lawlessness of which Caesar will be guilty in insisting upon a triumph for 
a victory gained in civil war, contrary to the laws of his country, which ex- 
pressly forbade it. 



252 PHAKSALIA. [B. vii. 45-66. 

mingled murmur of the camps the multitude resounded, 
and, the Fates dragging on the world to ruin, demanded the 
signal for combat. The greatest part of the wretched 
throng, not destined to behold the day throughout, mur- 
murs around the very tent of the general, and, inflamed, 
with vast tumult, urges on the speeding hours of approach- 
ing death. Direful frenzy arises ; each one desires to pre- 
cipitate his own destinies and those of the state. Pompey is 
called slothful and timorous, and too sparing of his father- 
in-law, and attached to his sway of the world 1 , in desiring 
to have at the same moment so many nations from every 
part under his own control, and being in dread of peace. 
Still more, both the kings and the eastern nations, too, com- 
plain that the war is prolonged, and that they are detained 
at a distance from their native land. 

Is it your pleasure, O Gods of heaven, when it is your 
purpose to overthrow all things, to add to our errors this 
crime-? We rush on upon slaughter, and arms that are to 
injure ourselves we demand. In the camp of Pompey, Phar- 
salia is an object of desire ! Tullius, the greatest author 
of Roman eloquence, beneath whose rule and Consular toga 
the fierce Catiline trembled at the axes 3 , producers of peace, 
enraged with the warfare, while he longed for the Rostra 
and the Forum, having, as a soldier, submitted to a silence 



1 And attached to his sway of the rorW) ver. 54. Pompey was accused of 
being too fond of his sway over monarchs gathered from all regions of the 
world, and unwilling to bring the contest to a conclusion. We learn from 
Plutarch and Appian that on this occasion he was styled " Agamemnon," and 
the " King of kings." Caesar, in his account of the Civil War, B. iii. c. 82, 
confirms the present statement of Lucan. " The forces of Porapey, being 
thus augmented by the troops of Scipio, their former expectations were con- 
firmed, and their hopes of victory so much increased, that whatever time 
intervened was considered as so much delay to their return to Italy ; aud 
whenever Pompey was acting with slowness and caution, they used to ex- 
claim that it was the business only of a single day, but that he had a passion 
for power, and was delighted in having persons of Consular and Praetorian 
rank in the number of his slaves." 

2 To add to our errors this crime) ver. 59. " Is it your determination that, 
in addition to the fatality which decrees our downfall, we shall be guilty of 
perverseness amounting to criminality 1 " 

3 Catiline trembled at the axes) ver. 64. He alludes to the part which 
Cicero, then Consul, took in quelling Catiline's conspiracy. It was in a great 
measure by his prudence that it was suppressed. 



B. vii. 66-84.] I'lIARSALIA. 253 

so prolonged, reported the language of all. Eloquence 
added its powers l to the feeble cause : 

" Fortune requests this only of thee, Magnus, in return 
for favours so numerous, that thou wilt be ready to make 
use of her ; both we, the nobles in thy camp, and thy kings, 
with the suppliant world pressing around thee, entreat that 
thou wilt permit thy father-in-law to be overcome. Shall 
Caesar for so long a time be cause of war- to mankind? 
With reason is it distasteful to nations subdued by thee when 
speeding past them, that Pompey should be slow in victory. 
Whither has thy spirit fled, or where is thy confidence in 
destiny ? Dost thou have apprehensions, ungrateful man, 
as to the Gods of heaven? And dost thou hesitate to trust 
the cause of the Senate to the Deities ? 

" The troops themselves will tear up thy standards, and 
will spring forward to the combat. Let it shame thee to 
have conquered by compulsion. If by thee as our appointed 
leader, if by us wars are waged, be it their right to meet 
upon whatever field they please. Why dost thou avert the 
swords of the whole world from the blood of Caesar ? Hands 
are brandishing weapons ; with difficulty does each await the 
delaying standards ; make haste that thy own trumpet-call 
may not forsake thee. Magnus, the Senate long to know 3 



1 Eloquence added its powers) ver. 67. It has been generally supposed 
by the learned that during Cicero's residence in the camp of Pompey he was 
in declining health, affected with low spirits, and in the habit of inveighing 
against everything that was going on there, and giving way to the deepest 
despondency. A knowledge that this was the case may possibly have caused 
Lucan to represent him as one of those who urged Pompey, against his own 
inclination, to fight the battle of Pharsalia; but it is the fact that he really 
was not present at that battle. 

- He cmise of vat) ver. 72. " Bellum" has here the meaning of "a cause 
of warfare." 

3 The Senate long to Mow) ver. 84-5. " Scire Senatus avet, miles te, 
Magne, seqiiatur, An comes." This passage admits of two modes of interpre- 
tation : "The Senate wishes to know whether you think that you have 
despotic sway over them, and that they are only your obedient soldiers, or 
whether you look upon them as your equals and sharers in the command." 
This is the old interpretation, but, Lemaire suggests another, which seems 
much more consistent with probability : " Do you look upon the Senators as 
soldiers who have placed themselves under your command, ready to fight, or 
merely as fellow travellers, forsooth, in your journey and flight from the 
arms of Caesar?" 



254 PHARSALIA. [B. vu. 84-108. 

whether they are to follow thee as soldiers or whether as 
companions." 

The leader groaned, and perceived that this was a subter- 
fuge of the Gods, and that the Destinies were opposed to 
his own feelings. 

" If this is the pleasure of all," he said ; " if the occasion 
requires Magnus as a soldier, not a general, no further will 
I delay the Fates. In one ruin let Fortune involve the 
nations, and let this day be to a large portion of mankind 
the very last. Still, Rome, I call thee to witness, that 
Magnus has received 1 , the day on which all tilings came to 
ruin. The labour of the war might have cost thee no wound 2 ; 
it might have delivered up the leader, subdued without 
slaughter and a captive, to violated peace 3 . What frenzy is 
this in crimes, ye, blind to fate ? Do they dread to wage 
a civil war, so as not to conquer with blood ? The earth we 
have wrested from him 4 , from the whole ocean we have 
excluded him; his famishing troops we have compelled 
to premature rapine of the crops 5 ; and in the enemy have 
we wrought the wish to prefer to be slaughtered with swords, 
and to mingle the deaths of his partisans with my own. 

" A great part of the warfare has been accomplished hi 
those measures, by which it has been brought about that the 
raw recruit is in no dread of the combat, if only under the 
excitement of valour and in the heat of resentment they de- 
mand the standards to be raised. The very fear of an evil 
about to come has committed many a one to extreme dangers. 
He is the bravest man, who, ready to endure what is 
deserving of fear, if it impends close at hand, can also 
defer it. Is it your pleasure to abandon this so pros- 

1 That Magnus lias received) ver. 92. Has had this fatal day forced 
upon him by necessity, and has not sought it. 

1 Might have cost thee no wound) ver. 93. He means that the war might 
have been prolonged so as to weary out the enemy without any bloodshed. 

3 Delivered up the leader to violated peace) ver. 94. " Tradere paci," ac- 
cording to some of the Commentators, simply means " to reduce to peace " by 
subduing him ; but Burmann thinks that it signifies " to immolate Caesar as 
a victim to that peace which he has so wantonly violated." 

4 The earth we have wrested from him) ver. 97. He means the regions of 
the East, the richest part of the Roman provinces, which were favouring 
the cause of Pompey against Caesar. 

4 To premature rapine of the crops) ver. 99. During the war in 
Epirus. 



B. vii. 108-135.] PHARSALIA. 255 

perous state of things to Fortune, to leave the hazard of 
the world to the sword ? They wish rather for their leader 
to fight than to conquer. Fortune, thou hadst granted me 
the Roman state to rule ; receive it still greater, and protect 
it amid the blindness of warfare. 

" War will be neither the crime nor the glory of Pompey. 
Before the Gods of heaven, thou dost conquer me, Ctesar, by 
thy hostile prayers. The battle is now fought. What an 
amount of crimes, and of evils an extent how vast will this day 
bring upon nations! how many kingdoms will lie in ruin! 
How turbid will Enipeus run * with Roman blood ! I could 
wish that the first dart of this lamentable warfare would strike 
this head, if without the ruin of the state and the downfall 
of the party, it were about to fall ; for not more joyous to 
Magnus will victory prove. To nations, this slaughter per- 
petrated, Pompey will be this day either a hated or a pitied 
name 2 . Every woe that the allotted destiny of things shall 
bring will belong to the conquered, to the conqueror every 
crime." 

Thus he speaks, and allows the combat to the nations, 
and gives loose rein to them as they rage with anger ; and 
just as the mariner, overpowered by the boisterous Cor us, 
leaves the rudder to the winds, and, skill abandoned, a 
sluggish burden, the ship is borne along. Confused, with 
an anxious murmuring the camp resounds, and bold hearts 
throb against their breasts with uncertain palpitations. On 
the countenances of many is the paleness of approaching 
death, and an aspect strongly indicating their destiny. 
It is clear that the day is come, which is to bestow a fate 
for everlasting upon human affairs, and it is manifest, that 
in that combat it is sought what Rome is to be :f . His 
own dangers each man knows not, distracted with greater 
fears. 

Who, beholding the shores overwhelmed by sea, who, 

1 How turbid mil Enipeus run) ver. 116. See B. vi. 1. 373. 

2 A hated or a pitied name) ver. 120-1. " If I gain this victory it will 
only be through the slaughter of my fellow citizens, and the nations who en- 
trust their fortunes to me ; if I am conquered, I myself am irretrievably 
ruined." 

a Is sought what Rome is to be) ver. 132. Whether it is destined to 
remain a free republic, or is to become a monarchy under the sway of a 
tyrant. 



256 THAR3ALIA. [B. vir. 135-153. 

seeing the ocean on the summits of mountains, and the sky, 
the sun hurled down, falling upon the earth, the downfall 
of things so numerous, could feel fear for himself? There 
is no leisure to have apprehensions for one's self; for the 
City and for Magnus is the alarm. 

Nor have they confidence in their swords, unless the 
points shine shai-pened with the whetstone. Then is every 
javelin pointed against the rock; with better strings they 
tighten the hows ; it is a care to fill the quivers with chosen 
arrows 1 . The horseman increases the spurs, and fits on 
the thongs of the reins. If it is lawful to compare the 
labours of men with the Gods of heaven, not otherwise, 
Phlcgra supporting the furious Giants 2 , did the sword of 
Mars grow warm upon the Sicilian anvils :t ; and a second 
time the trident of Neptune grew red with flames, and, 
Python lying prostrate, Psean renewed his darts, Pallas 
scattered the locks of the Gorgon upon her .lEgis, and 
the Cyclops moulded anew the Pallensean thunderbolts of 
Jove 4 . 

Fortune, however, did not forbear by various marks to 
disclose the woes about to ensue. For while they were re- 
pairing to the Thessalian fields, the whole sky opposed them 

1 To fill the quivers with chosen arrow*) ver. 142. The "pharetra," or 
quiver filled with arrows, was used by most of the ancient nations that ex- 
celled in archery, among whom were the Scythians, Persians, Lyoians, Thra- 
cians, and Cretans. It was made of leather, and was sometimes adorned 
with gold and colours. It had a lid, and was suspended by a belt from the 
right shoulder. Its usual position was on the left hip, and it was thus worn 
by the Scythians and Egyptians. The Cretans, however, wore it behind the 
back, and Diana in her statue is represented aa so doing. 

2 Phlcgra supporting thefunous Giants) ver. 145. See B. v. 1. 597, and 
the Note to the passage. 

3 Grow icarm upon the Sicilian anvils) ver. 146. He alludes to the pre- 
parations which, previous to the battle of the Gods with the Giants, Vulcan 
and the Cyclops made at the forge which they had at Mount 2Etna in Sicily. 
There they furbished the lance or sword (" ensis" may mean either) of Mars, 
the trident of Neptune, the arrows with which Paean, or Apollo, had slain 
the serpent Python, the JEgis or shield of Minerva, on which was the head of 
the Gorgon Medusa, and the thunderbolts of Jupiter. 

4 The Pallenaan thunderbolts of Jove) ver. 150. So called because 
about to be employed at Pallene, which was more anciently called 
Phlegm, where this battle was said to have taken place. It was a Peninsula 
jutting out into the sea from Chalcidice in Macedonia. On the Isthmus 
which connected it with the main land stood the town of Potidaea. 



B. vn. 153-169.] PHAESALIA. 257 

as they come, and in the eyes of the men the lightnings 
rent asunder the clouds; and torches meeting them, and 
columns of immense flames, and the sky presented ser- 
pentine forms, greedy of the waves 1 , with fiery meteors 
intermingled, and with hurled lightnings dimmed their 
eyes. The crests it struck off from their helmets 2 , and 
dissolved the hilts of their melted swords, and liquefied 
the darts torn away 3 , and made the hurtful weapon to 
smoke with sulphur from the skies. 

Moreover, the standards, covered with swarms innu- 
merable 4 , and with difficulty torn up from the ground 5 , 
bowed the head of the standard-bearer, weighed down with 
an unusual burden, soaking with tears, even as far as 
Thessaly the standards of Koine and of the republic". 
The bull, urged onward for the Gods above, flies from the 
spurned altar, and throws himself headlong along the 
Emathian fields ; and for the sad rites no victim is found. 

But thou, Csesar, what heavenly Gods of criminality, 
what Eumenides, didst thou with due ceremonials invoke 7 ? 

1 Serpentine forms, greedy of the waves) ver. 156. " Fythoras aquarum" 
probably means " water-spouts" assuming a serpentine shape. 

2 The crests it struck off from their helmets) ver. 158. The helmets of the 
ancients were very commonly surmounted by crests of horse-hair. In the 
Roman army the crest was not only used for ornament, but to distinguish 
the different centuries, each of which wore one of a different colour. 

3 And liquefied the darts torn away) ver. 160. Most of these portentous 
occurrences are related by Valerius Maximus as having happened to Pompey 
in his march from Dyrrhachium to Thessaly ; and, according to him, they 
were so many warnings for him to avoid a battle with Caesar. 

4 Covered with swarms innumerable) ver. 161. Weise takes "examen" 
here to mean "flocks of birds ;" but it is more probable that swarms of bees 
are meant, which Valerius Maximus mentions on the same occasion as clinging 
to the standards of Pompey's troops, B. i. c. 6. 

4 With difficulty lorn up from the ground) ver. 162. The standards stuck 
so fast in the ground that it was only with the utmost difficulty that they 
were withdrawn from it, and then they were so weighty that the standard- 
bearers were forced to incline their heads forwards in supporting them ; they 
were dripping, too, with water, as though weeping for the public calamities. 

6 The standards of Rome and of the republic) ver. 164. The word 
"signa" is repeated in this line by the figura anaphora. They grieved because 
hitherto they had been the standards of the whole Roman republic, whereas 
in future they were doomed to serve in the cause of but one individual, 
namely, Caesar, and his successors. 

7 What Eumenides didst f/tow invoke) ver. 169. Lucaa, with his usual hos- 

8 



258 PHABSALIA. [a vn. 169-188. 

What Deities of the Stygian realms, and u-hat infernal 
fiends, and monsters steeped in night, didst thou pro- 
pitiate, so ruthlessly about to wage the impious warfare? 
Now (it is matter of doubt whether they believed the por- 
tents of the rods, or their own excessive fears), Pindus 
seemed to many to meet with Olympus, and Haemus to 
sink in the deep valleys, Pharsalia to send forth by night 
the din of warfare, flowing blood to run along Osssean 
Boebeis 1 ; and in turn they wondered at their features 
being concealed amid gloom 2 , and at the day growing 
pale, and at night hovering over their helmets, and their 
departed parents and all the ghosts of their kindred flitting 
before then- eyes. But to their minds this was one consola- 
tion, in that the throng, conscious of their wicked intentions, 
who hoped for the throats of their fathers, who longed for 
the breasts of their brothers, exulted in these portents and 
the tumultuous feelings of their minds, and deemed the 
sudden portents to be omens of their impious deeds. 

What wonder, that nations, whom 3 the last day of liberty 
was awaiting, trembled with frantic fear, if a mind fore- 
knowing woes is granted to mankind ? The Roman, who, a 

tility to Caesar, implies that on the night before the battle he sacrificed to the 
Infernal Deities ; he is censured by Bunnann for implying that the Goda 
of heaven might sanction criminality, and for not knowing that victory was 
never supposed to lie in the hands of the Infernal Deities. Appian, B. ii. 
c. 116, informs us that in the middle of the night before the battle Caesar 
performed sacrifice, and invoked Mars, and Venus his ancestress, and vowed 
a temple to Victory if he should gain the battle. 

1 To run along Otscean Boebeis) ver. 176. See B. vi. L 382, and the Note 
to the passage. 

* Being concealed amid gloom) ver. 177. Floras, B. iv. c. 2, mentions the 
deep gloom that came over in the middle of the day. Badiua Ascensius 
thinks that the following remarks of Lucan here apply to the partisans of 
Caesar ; it is, however, pretty clear that he is censuring the Fompeian party 
for their readiness to enter upon the civil strife. 

* What wonder, that nations, whom) ver. 185-7. " Quid mirum, populos, 
quos lux extrema manebat, Lymphato trepidasse metn 1 prassaga malorum Si 
data mens homini est." This passage admits of three modes of interpreta- 
tion : " What wonder is it that people were alarmed who had now arrived 
at the last day of their lives?" or, " ^Yhat wonder if they were alarmed when 
the waning light of liberty was forsaking them V or, " What wonder if na- 
tions who saw the light at the extremities of the world had apprehensions at 
that time of the scene of horror then acting in Thessaly 1" 



B. vn. 188-203.] PHARSALIA. 259 

stranger, lies adjacent to Tyrian Gades 1 , and he who drinks 
of Armenian Araxes 2 , beneath whatever clime, beneath 
whatever Constellation of the universe he is, is sad, and is 
ignorant of the cause, and chides his flagging spirits ; he 
knows not what he is losing on the Emathian plains. An 
augur, if there is implicit credit 3 to be given to those who 
relate it, sitting on the Euganean hill 4 , where the steaming 
Aponus ' arises from the earth, and the waters of Timavus 
of An tenor" are dispersed in various channels, exclaimed : 
" The critical day is come, a combat most momentous is 
being waged, the impious arms of Pompey and of Caesar 
are meeting." Whether it was that he marked the thun- 
ders and the presaging weapons of Jove, or beheld the 
whole sky and the poles standing still in the discordant 
heavens ; or whether the saddening light in the sky pointed 
out the fight by the gloomy paleness of the sun. 

The day of Thessaly undoubtedly did nature introduce 
unlike to all the days which she displays ; if, universally, 
with the experienced augur, the mind of man had marked 7 

1 Adjacent to Tyrian Gades) ver. 187. Gades, now Cadiz, in Spain, was 
said to have been a Phrygian or Tyrian colony. 

2 Of Armenian Araxes) ver. 188. See B. i. 1. 19, and the Note to the 
passage. 

3 If there is implicit credit) ver. 192. He alludes to the story which 
is related by Plutarch and Aulus Gellius, B. xvi. c. 18, that on the 
day when the battle of Pharsalia was fought C. Cornelius, a celebrated 
soothsayer, was then at Patavium, and that, observing the portentous signs 
given by his science, he told those who were then standing by him that that 
very instant the battle was beginning ; and then, turning again to the signs, 
lie suddenly sprang forward as though inspired, and exclaimed, " Caesar, thou 
hast conquered." 

4 Sitting on tlte Euganean hill) ver. 192. The Euganean Hills were near 
the city of Patavium, now Padua, in the north of Italy, which was said so 
have been founded by a people called the Euganei. 

s Where the steaming Aponus) ver. 193. The Aponus or " Aponi Fons," 
" Aponian Springs," was a medicinal spring in the neighbourhood of Pata- 
vium, much valued for its healing qualities. 

6 Timavus of Anterior) ver. 194. Timavus is a stream now called Ti- 
mavo or Friuli, forming the boundary between Istria and Venetia, and falling 
into the Sinus Tergestinus in the Adriatic or Gulf of Venice. Antenor, who 
fled from Troy with some Trojans, was said to have been the founder of 
Patavium. 

7 Tfie mind of man had marked) ver. 203. " If mankind had been en- 
dowed with the augur's skill, they might have known by the signs prevalent 
throughout the world the contest that was then going on at Pharsalia." 

s 2 



260 PHARSALIA. [B. vn. 203-223. 

the unusual phenomena of the heavens, Pharsalia might 
have been beheld by the whole world. O mightiest of men, 
the indications of whom Fortune afforded throughout the 
earth, to whose destinies all heaven had leisure to attend ! 
These deeds, both among future nations and the races of 
your descendants, whether by their own fame alone they 
shall come down to remote ages, or whether the care of my 
labours is in any degree able as well to profit mighty names, 
when the wars shall be read of, will excite both hopes and 
fears, and wishes destined to be of no avail; and all, 
moved, shall read of thy fate as though approaching 
and not concluded, and still, Magnus, shall wish thee 
success. 

The soldiers, when, gleamed upon by the opposite rays 
of Phoebus, descending, they have covered all the hills with 
glittering brightness, are not promiscuously sent forth upon 
the plains; in firm array stand the doomed ranks. To 
thee, Lentulus, is entrusted the care of the left whig 1 , to- 
gether with the first legion, which then was the best in war, 
and the fourth; to thee, Domitius 2 , valiant, with the Deity 
adverse, is given the front of the army on the right. 
But Hie bravest troops redouble the strength of the centre 
of the battle, which, drawn forth from the lands of the 
Cilicians, Scipio commands 3 , the chief commander hi the 



1 To thee, Lentulus, is entrusted the care of the left wing) ver. 218. On the 
other hand, Appian assigns the right wing to Lentulus Spinther, and Plutarch 
to Pompey, while he gives the left to Domitius. Caesar says, in the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 88 : " On the left wing were the two legions delivered over by Caesar 
at the beginning of the disputes in compliance with the Senate's decree, one of 
which was called the first, the other the third. Here Pompey commanded 
in person." This is the more likely, as, from the strength of these legions, 
they would probably be placed opposite to Caesar's strongest legion, the 
tenth, which was on his right. 

2 To thee, Domitiits) ver. 220. This was L. Domitius Ahenobarbus, who 
had been taken and released by Cresar at Corfinium, and had opposed his 
arms at Massilia ; on both of which occasions, as here remarked, he had been 
singularly unfortunate. 

3 Scipio commands) ver. 223. This was Metellus Scipio, the father- 
in-law of Pompey, who had arrived a few days before with eight legions 
from Syria. Caesar says, in the Civil YTar, B. iii. c. 88 : " Scipio, with the 
Syrian legions, commanded the centre. The Cilician legion, in conjunction 
with the Spanish cohorts, which we s:iid were brought over by Afranius, were 
disposed on the right wing. These Pompey considered his steadiest troops." 



B. vii. 223-231.] PHAESALIA. 261 

Libyan land 1 , a soldier in this. But near the streams and 
the waters- of the flowing Enipeus, the mountain cohorts 
of the Cappadocians'', and the Pontic cavalry with their 
loose reins 4 , take their stand. 

But most of the positions on the diy plain 5 Tetrarchs 
and Kings and mighty potentates held, and all the purple 
which is obedient to the Latian sword. Thither, too, did 
Libya send her Numidians"', and Crete her Cydonians 8 ; 
thence was there a flight for the arrows of Itursea ; thence, 

1 In tJw Libyan land) ver. 223. After the death of Pompey, Scipio took 
the command of the war in Africa. 

Hut near the streams and the waters) ver. 224. The rest of the disposition 
of Pompey's forces is thus stated by Caesar, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 88 : 
" The rest he had interspersed between the centre and the wing, and he had 
a hundred and ten complete cohorts ; these amounted to forty-five thousand 
men. He had, besides, two cohorts of volunteers, who, having received fa- 
vours from him in former wars, flocked to his standard ; these were dispersed 
through his whole army. The seven remaining cohorts he had disposed to 
protect his camp and the neighbouring forts. His right wing was secured by 
a river with steep banks; for which reason he placed all his cavalry, archers, 
and slingers on his left wing." 

3 Mountain cohorts of the Cappadocians) ver. 225. The Cappadocians 
from Asia Minor were commanded by their king, Ariobarzanes. See B. ii. 
1. 344, and the Note to the passage. It is not known whether the epithet 
"mon tana" is given to them from living in mountainous districts in their 
native country, or from their being encamped on the hills near Pharsalia ; 
most probably the former is the fact. 

4 Pontic cavalry vnth their loose reins) ver. 225. "Largus habenae." 
These were the ancestors of the Cossacks of the present day, and seem to 
have similarly excelled in horsemanship. 

s Positions on the dry plain) ver. 226. "Sicci;" meaning that part of 
the plain which was at a distance from the river. 

6 Tetrarcks and Kings) ver. 227. A Tetrarch was originally one who had 
the fourth part of a kingdom to govern; hence the word came to be applied 
to small potentates, who, though enjoying regal dignity and power, were not 
considered worthy of the name of " Rex," or " King." 

7 Libya send her Numidians) ver. 229. The subjects of Juba, the ally 
of Pompey. 

9 And Crete far Cydonians) ver. 229. Cydonis, or Cydon, was one of 
the principal cities of the isle of Crete, on the north-west coast of which it 
was situate. The inhabitants were among the most skilful archers of Crete ; 
and it was the first place from which quinces were brought to Rome, which 
were thence called " mala Cydonia," afterwards corrupted into " Melicotone," 
the old English name of the fruit. 

" For tli# arrows of Tturcea) ver. 230. The country of Ituroea was situate 
on the north-eastern border of Palestine. Its people were of the Arab race, 
and of warlike and predatory habits. Pompey had recently reduced them, 



262 PHARSALU. [B. vii. 231-242. 

fierce Gauls, did you 1 saDy forth against your wonted foe; 
there did Iberia wield her contending bucklers-. Tear 
from the victor the nations ', Magnus, and, the blood of the 
world spilt at one moment, cut short for him all triumphs. 

On that day, by chance, his position being left, Caesar, 
about to move his standards for foraging hi the standing 
corn 4 , suddenly beholds the enemy descending into the level 
plains, and sees the opportunity presented to him, a thousand 
times asked for in his prayers, upon which he is -to submit 
everything to the last chance. For, sick of delay, and 
burning with desire for rule, he had begun, in this short space 
of time, to condemn the civil war as slow-paced wickedness. 

in a great degree, under the Roman rule, and many of their warriors entered 
the Roman army, in which they distinguished themselves by their skill in 
archery and horsemanship. They were not, however, reduced to complete 
subjection to Rome till after the Civil Wars. 

1 Thence, fierce Gauls, did you) ver. 281. Burmann thinks that the Gala- 
tians of Asia Minor are here referred to, who were said to be descendants of 
the people of Gaul, and were aiding Pompey under their aged king Deiotarus. 
It is, however, more probable, from the allusion to their "wonted foe," 
that the Allobroges are alluded to, the desertion of two of whom to Pompey, 
Roscillus and JEgus, is mentioned by Caesar in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 59- 
61. He says that they went over " with a great retinue." 

3 Wield tier contending bucklers) ver. 232. The " cetra " was a target or 
small round shield, made of the hide of a quadruped. It was worn by the 
people of Spain (as here mentioned) and of Mauritania. By the latter 
people it was sometimes made from the skin of the elephant. As Tacitus 
mentions the "cetra" as being used by the Britons, it is probably the same 
with the " target " used by the Highlanders of Scotland. 

3 Tear from the victw ike nations) ver. 233. By causing the blood to be 
shed of so many nations, leave none for Coesar to triumph over. 

* For foraging in the standing corn} ver. 236. Caesar thus relates the 
circumstances here alluded to, in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 75 : " Caesar, 
seeing no likelihood of being able to bring Pompey to an action, judged it 
the most expedient method of conducting the war, to decamp from that post, 
and to be always in motion : with this hope, that by shifting his camp and 
removing from place to place, he might be more conveniently supplied with 
corn, and also, that by being in motion he might get some opportunity of 
forcing them to battle, and, by constant marches, harass Pompey's army, 
which was not accustomed to fatigue. These matters being settled, when 
the signal for marching was given, and the tents struck, it was observed that 
shortly before, contrary to his daily practice, Pompey's army had advanced 
further than usual from his entrenchments, so that it appeared possible to 
come to an action on even ground." According to another account, Caesar 
had sent out three legions the night before, to forage, which, on perceiving 
Pompey's advance, he forthwith recalled. 



B. vii. 242-258.] PHARSALIA. 263 

After he saw the fates of the chieftains drawing nigh, 
and the closing combat at hand, and perceived the falling 
ruins of destiny tottering, this frenzy even, most eager for 
the sword, flagged in a slight degree, and his mind, which 
his own fortunes did not permit to fear, nor those of Magnus 
to hope, bold to engage for a prosperous result, hesitated 
in suspense 1 . Fear thrown aside, confidence sprang up, 
better suited for encouraging the ranks : 

" O soldiers, subduers of the world 2 , the stay of my for- 
tunes 3 , the opportunity for the fight so oft desired is come. 
No need is there for prayers ; now hasten your destinies by 
the sword. You have in your own power how mighty Caesar 
is to prove. This is that day which I remember being pro- 
mised me 4 at the waves of Rubicon, in hope of which 
we took up arms, to which we deferred the return of our 
forbidden triumphs 5 . This is that same which is this day 
to restore our pledges, and which is to give us back our 
household Gods, and, your period of service completed, is to 

1 Hesitated in suspense) ver. 247-8. His own previous successes will 
not allow him to despair, while those of Pompey will not allow him to hope 
for the victory. 

2 soldiers, suldmrs of the world) ver. 250. Caesar, in the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 85, gives the following account of the first of his two brief speeches 
on this occasion : " Caesar addressed himself to his soldiers, when they were 
at the gates of the camp, ready to inarch out. ' We must defer,' said he, 
' our march at present, and set our thoughts on battle, which has been our 
constant wish : let us, then, meet the foe with resolute minds. We shall 
not hereafter easily find such an opportunity.' " This betokens none of the 
hesitation which the Poet ascribes to Cassar on the present occasion. 

3 The stay of my fortunes) ver. 250. Conquerors of those regions com- 
prehended under the names of Gaul, Hispania, and part of Britain and of 
Germany. Appian, in the speech which he attributes to Csesar on the 
present occasion, makes him refer to the four hundred nations which he, by 
his victories, had added to the Roman sway. 

4 }\'/rich I remember leiny promised me) ver. 255. Promised by Laelius, 
the Tribune, and assented to by the shouts of the whole army. See B. i. 
1. 359, et seq., and 1. 388, et seq. 

4 The return of our forbidden triumphs) ver. 256. "The triumph over 
the conquered Gauls, which the jealousy of Pompey and the Senate has not 
hitherto allowed us to enjoy." 

6 That same which is this day) ver. 257-8. "This is the day which will 
restore us who have been banished and declared the enemies of our country 
to our homes and our wives and children, to which we have been forbidden 
to return, and will be the means of procuring for yon allotments of land, on 
which, as cultivators, discharged from war (emeriti), you will be enabled to 
settle." 



264 PHARSALIA. [u. vn. 258-275. 

make you tillers of the land. This tlie day, which, fate being 
the witness, is to prove who the most righteously has taken 
up arms ; this battle is destined to make the conquered the 
guilty one. 

" If for me with sword and with flames you have attacked 
your country, now fight valiantly, and absolve your swonls 
from blame. No hand, the judge of the warfare being 
changed 1 , is guiltless. Not my fortunes are at stake, but 
that you yourselves may be a free people do I pray, that 
you may-hold sway over all nations. I, myself, anxious to 
surrender myself to a private station, and to settle myself as 
an humble citizen in a plebeian toga 2 , refuse to be nothing 3 
until all this is granted to you. With the blame my own do 
you obtain the sway. And with no great bloodshed do you 
aspire to the hope of the world : a band of youths selected 
from the Grecian wrestling schools, and rendered effeminate 
by the pursuits of the places of exercise J , will be before you, 
and wielding their arms with difficulty ; the discordant bar- 
barism, too, of a mingled multitude, that will not be able 
to endure the trumpets, nor, the army moving on, their 
own shouts. But few hands with them* will be waging a 

1 Tlie judge of the warfare beiny changed) ver. 263. Meaning that neither 
side is guiltless, if it has its adversary as the judge of its conduct. 

2 An humble citizen- in a plebeian toga) ver. 267. He is ready to resign 
the Consulship, and with it the " toga pnctexta," which was the garment worn 
by the magistrates, and assume the " toga plebeia," or garment worn by 
private persons in time of peace. 

3 Refuse to be nothing) ver. 268. " Kihil esse recuso." There have been 
two meanings suggested for these words. That adopted by Marmontel and 
some of the Commentators is, " So long as I obtain for you your rights, 
there is nothing that I would refuse to be." The other, which seems the 
more probable, is, " In order that I may gain your liberty for you, I do 
refuse to be as nothing," i. e., to be trodden under foot by the Senate, or to 
be treated like a private person. 

4 By tlie pursuits of tiie places of exercise) ver. 271. " Palaestrae." He 
means that, compared with the real hardships which his own veterans have 
undergone, the exercises of the Grecian " palaestrae " and " gymnasia" have but 
tended to render the partisans of Pompey less hardy. The *' palaestrae '' were 
places of exercise, probably intended for such as were about to contend in the 
public games, while the " gymnasia" were for the use of the public iu general. 
It has, however, been suggested that the "palaestra;" were for the use of the 
boys and youths, while the "gymnasia" were intended for the men. 

4 But few hands mlh them) ver. 274. Notwithstanding this remark, it is 
most probable that by far the greater part of Pompey's army consisted of 
Roman citizens, as it is solely by poetic licence that Lucan represents 



B. vii. 275-303.] PHARSALIA. 265 

civil war ; a great part of the combat will rid the earth of 
these nations, and will break down the Roman foe. Go 
onward amid dastard nations and realms known by report, 
and with the first movement of the sword lay prostrate the 
world ; and let it be known that the nations which, so 
numerous, Pompey at his chariot led into the City, are not 
worth a single triumph 1 . 

" Does it concern the Armenians to what chieftain the 
Roman sway belongs ? Or does any barbarian wish to place 
Magnus over the Hesperian state, purchased with -the least 
bloodshed ? All Romans they detest, and most do they hate 
the rulers whom they have known. But me Fortune has 
entrusted to bands of whom Gaul has made me witness hi 
so many campaigns. Of which soldier shall I not recognize 
the sword ? And when a quivering javelin passes through 
the air, I shah 1 not be deceived in pronouncing by what arm 
it has been poised. And if I behold the indications that 
never deceived your leader, both stern faces and threatening 
eyes, then have you proved the victors. Rivers of blood do 
I seem to behold, and both Kings trodden under foot, and 
the corpses of Senators scattered, and nations swimming 
in boundless carnage. 

" But I am delaying my own destinies in withholding you 
by these words from rushing upon the weapons. Grant me 
pardon for procrastinating the combat. I exult in hopes ; 
never have I beheld the Gods of heaven about to present 
gifts so great, so close at hand for me ; at the slight distance 
of this plain are we removed from our wishes. I am he 
who shall be empowered, the battle finished, to make dona- 
tions of what nations and monarchs possess. By what 
commotion in the skies, by what star of heaven tumed 
back, ye Gods above, do ye grant thus much to the Thes- 
salian land? 

" This day, either the reward of the warfare or the 

Pompey 's army as such a vast multitude. We find Caesar, who had no 
interest in underrating his numbers, representing them as forty-five thousand 
men, and Plutarch, in the Life of Pompey, says that Caesar's army consisted 
of twenty-two thousand, and Pompey's, double that number. 

1 Are not worth a single triumph) ver. 280. " Show, by conquering them 
all united with ease, that these nations, for the conquest of whom Pompey 
has enjoyed so many triumphs, were not worthy of being the cause for a 
single triumph even." 



266 PHABSALIA. [u. vn. 303-322. 

punishment is awarded. Behold the crosses for Caesar's 
partisans ' ; behold the chains ! this head, too, exposed on 
the Rostra 2 , and my torn limbs, and the criminal doings 
at the voting-places*, and the battles hi the enclosed Plain 
of Mars. With a chieftain of Sulla's party are we waging 
civil war. It is care for you that moves me. For a lot, 
free from care, sought by my own hand, shall await 
myself; he who, the foe not yet subdued, shall look back, 
shall behold me piercing my own vitals. Ye Gods, whose 
care the earth and the woes of Rome have drawn down 
from the skies, let him conquer, who does not deem it 
necessary to unsheathe against the conquered the ruthless 
sword, and who does not think that his own fellow-citizens, 
because they have raised hostile standards, have committed 
a crime. When he enclosed your troops in a blockaded 
place, your valour forbidden to be employed, with how 
much blood 4 did Pompey glut the sword ! 

" Still, youths, this do I ask of you, that no one will be 
ready to smite the back of the foe ; he who flies, let him be 
a fellow-citizen \ But while the darts are glittering, let not 
any fiction of affection, nor even parents beheld with adverse 
front, affect you ; mangle with the sword 6 the venerated fea- 

1 The crosses for Cottar's partisans) ver. 305. "Caesareas crucesj" 
meaning the crosses erected with which to punish the adherents of Caesar. 

3 Exposed on Hie Rostra) ver. 305. In the civil war between Marius 
and Sulla, the heads of those who were slain were exposed by the dominant 
party at the Rostra. Cicero's head and hands were placed there subsequently 
to this by his revengeful enemy, Antony. 

* The criminal doings at the voting-places) ver. 306. " Septorumque 
nefas." See this allusion explained in the Note to B. ii. 1. 197. 

4 With how much Hood) ver. 317. We have already seen Lucan repre- 
senting Pompey as leaving Dyrrhachium, and not pushing on his successes 
there, in consequence of his extreme unwillingness to shed the blood of his 
fellow-citizens. It is probably the fact that Pompey acted with neither any 
remarkable relentlessness nor humanity, but with more prudence than either, 
on that occasion. Of course, Lucan would not miss the opportunity of put- 
ting an untruth in the mouth of Caesar. 

* Let him be a fellow-citizen) ver. 319. Caesar, long before this, had 
stated at Rome that he should treat those as his friends who should adopt 
neither party ; whereas Pompey, on leaving Rome, had declared that he 
should consider all such persons his enemies. 

6 Mangle with the sword) ver. 322. It is generally related by the histo- 
rians that, on this occasion, Cxsar especially requested his soldiers to aim at 
the faces of Pompey 's cavalry, who, being in a great measure composed of 



B. vii. 322-332.] PHARSALIA. 26r 

tures. Whether one shall rush with hostile weapon against 
a kinsman's breast, or whether with his wound he shall 
violate no ties of relationship, let him attack the throat of an 
unknown foe, just the same as incurring the criminality of 
slaughtering a relative. Forthwith lay the ramparts low, and 
fill up the trenches with the ruins, that in full maniples, 
not straggling, the army may move on. Spare not the 
camp ; within those lines l shall you pitch your tents, from 
which the army is coming doomed to perish." 

Csesar having hardly said all this -, his duties attract each 
one, and instantly their arms are taken up by the men. 
Swiftly they forestall the presage of the war : ', and, their camp 
trodden under foot, they rush on ; in no order 4 do they 

the young Patricians of Rome, would dread a scar on the face even more 
than death itself. 

1 Within those lines) ver. 328. " You shall pitch your next tents within 
the lines of the enemy." Appian represents Caesar as saying on this occa- 
sion, " As you go forth to battle, pull down the ramparts and level the out- 
works, that we may he in possession of nothing but as conquerors. Let the 
enemy themselves behold us destitute of a camp, and know that it is im- 
posed on us, as a matter of necessity, either to gain their camp, or to die 
in battle." 

2 Caesar having hardly said all this) ver. 329. Caesar, in his Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 90, mentions that he addressed his soldiers in the following terms, 
just before the onset : " He could call his soldiers to witness the earnest- 
ness with which he had sought peace, the efforts that he had made, through 
Vatinius, to gain a conference [with Labienus], and likewise, through Clau- 
dius, to treat with Scipio ; and in what manner he had exerted himself at 
Oricum to gain permission from Libo to send ambassadors ; that he had 
been always reluctant to shed the blood of his soldiers, and did not wish to 
deprive the republic of either of her armies." 

3 Forestall the presage of ike war) ver. 331. They swiftly obey Caesar's 
command, and, destroying their lines and ramparts, adopt it as an omen of 
victory. 

4 In no order) ver. 332. This is not the truth, and purely an invention 
of the Poet, to show the determination with which the troops of Caesar 
began the engagement Caesar, in his Civil War, B. iii. c. 89, gives the 
following account of his line of battle : " Caesar, observing his former 
custom, had placed the tenth legion on the right, the ninth on the left, 
although it was very much weakened by the battles at Dyrrhachium. 
He placed the eighth legion so close to the ninth as to almost make one of 
the two, and ordered them to support one another. He drew up on the field 
eighty cohorts, making a total of twenty-two thousand men. He left two 
cohorts to guard the camp; he gave the command of the left wing to Antony, 
of the right to P. Sulla, and of the centre to Cn. Domituis ; he himself took 
his post opposite Pompey. At the same time, fearing, from the disposition 



268 PHARSALIA. [n. vn. 332-360. 

stand, with no disposition made by their general ; everything 
they leave to destiny. If in the direful combat you had 
placed so many fathers-in-law of Magnus, and so many 
aspiring to the sway of their own city, not with course so 
precipitate would they have rushed to the combat. 

When Pompey beheld the hostile troops coming forth 
straight on, and allowing no respite for the war, but that 
the day was pleasing to the Gods of heaven, with frozen 
heart he stood astounded ; and for a chieftain so great thus 
to dread arms was ominous. Then he repressed his fears, 
and, borne on a stately steed along all the ranks, he said : 

" The day which your valour demands, the end of the 
civil warfare which you have looked for, is at hand. Show 
forth all your might ; the last work of the sword is at hand, 
and one hour drags on nations to their fate. Whoever looks 
for his country and his dear household Gods ; who looks for 
his offspring, and conjugal endearments, and his deserted 
pledges of affection, let him seek them with the sword ; 
everything has the Deity set at stake in the midst of the 
plain. Our cause the better one bids us hope for the Gods 
of heaven as favouring ; they themselves will direct the 
darts through the vitals of Caesar ; they themselves will be 
desirous with this blood to ratify the Eoman laws. If they 
had been ready to grant to my father-in-law kingly sway and 
the world, they were able, by fatality, to hurry on my old age. 
It is not the part of the Gods, angered at nations and the 
City, to preserve Pompey as their leader. 

" Everything that could possibly conquer have we con- 
tributed. Illustrious men have of their own accord sub- 
mitted to dangers, and the veteran soldier, with his holy 
resemblance to the heroes of old. If the Fates at these troublous 
times would permit the Curii and the Camilli to come back, 
and the Decii, who devoted their lives to death, on this side 
would they take their stand. Nations collected from the 

of the enemy which we have previously mentioned, lest his right wing might 
be surrounded by their numerous cavalry, he rapidly drafted a single cohort 
from each of the legions of the third line, formed of them a fourth line, and 
cet them opposite to Pompey 's cavalry, and, acquainting them with his wishes, 
admonished them that the success of that day depended on their courage. 
At the same time he ordered the third line, and the entire army, not to 
charge without his command ; that he would give them the signal whenever 
he wished them to do so." 



B. vii. 360-390.] PHAESALIA. 269 

remote East, and cities innumerable, have aroused bands to 
battle so mighty as they never sent forth be/ore. At the 
same moment the whole world do we employ. Whatever 
men there are included within the limits of the heavens l that 
bear the Constellations, beneath Notus and Boreas, here are 
we, arras do we wield. Shall we not with our wings extended 
around place the collected foe in the midst of tis? Few 
right hands does victory require ; and many troops will 
only wage the warfare with their shouts. Caesar suffices 
not for our arms 2 . 

" Think that your mothers, hanging over the summits 
of the walls of the City, with their dishevelled hair, are en- 
couraging you to battle. Think that a Senate, aged, and 
forbidden by years to follow arms, are prostrating at your 
feet their hallowed hoary locks; and that Home herself, 
dreading a tyrant, comes to meet you. Think that that 
which now is the people, and that which shall be the people, 
are offering their mingled prayers. Free does this mul- 
titude wish to be born ; free does that wish to die. If, after 
pledges so great, there is any room for Pompey, suppliant 
with my offspring and my wife, if with the majesty of com- 
mand preserved it were possible, I would throw myself 
before your feet. I, Magnus, unless you conquer, an exile, 
the scorn of my father-in-law, your own disgrace, do earn- 
estly deprecate my closing destinies, and the disastrous 
years of the latest period of my life, that I may not, an 
aged man, learn to be a slave." 

At the voice of their general uttering words so sad 
their spirits are inflamed, and the Roman valoiir is 
aroused, and it pleases them to die if he is in fear of the 
truth. 

Therefore on either side do the armies meet with a like 
impulse of anger; the fear of rule arouses the one, the 
hope of it the other. These right hands shall do what no 
age can supply, nor the human race throughout all ages 
repair, even though it should be free from the sword. This 
warfare shall overwhelm future nations, and shall cut short 

1 Within the limits of the lieavvis) ver. 363. " Limite cceli " probably 
means the circle of the Zodiac. 

* Caesar suffices not for our arms) ver. 368. " Caesar's numbers are too few 
for us to slay each one his man." 



2TO PHARSALIA. [B. VIL 390-402. 

to the world the people of ages to come, the day of their 
birth being torn away from them. Then shall all the Latin 
name be a fable ; the ruins concealed in dnst shall hardly 
be able to point out Gabii 1 , Veii-', and Cora', and the 
deserted fields shall hardly show the homes of Alba and the 
household Gods of Laurentum 4 , which the Senator would 
not inhabit, except upon the night ordained', with re- 
luctance, and complaining that Numa has so ordained. 

These monuments of things devouring time has not 
consumed, and has left still crumbling away; the crime 
of civil war we behold, cities so many deserted 6 . To what 
has the multitude of the human race been reduced ? We 
nations who are born throughout the whole world arc 
able to fill neither the fortified places nor the fields with 
men ; one City receives us all. By the chained delver 7 are 

1 To point out Gabii) ver. 392. Gabii, near the present town of Casti- 
glione, was a city of Latium, near the Gabinian Lake, between Rome and 
Praeneste, said to have been founded by a colony from Alba Longa ; and, 
according to tradition, Romulus was brought up there. It was taken by 
stratagem by Tarquinins Superbus (see the Fasti of Ovid, B. ii. 1. 690, 
et seq), and was in rains, as we learn from Horace, in the time of Augustus. 

3 Veil) ver. 392. See B. v. 1. 29, and the Note to the passage. 

3 And Cora) ver. 392. This was an ancient town of Latium, in the 
mountains of the Volsci, said to have been founded by an Argive named 
Coraz. It is mentioned by Virgil in the 2Eneid, B. vi. 1. 776. 

4 Household Gods of Laurentum) ver. 394. Laurentum was one of the 
most ancient towns of Latium, situate on a high ground between Ostia and 
Ardea, not far from the sea, and said to have been surrounded by a grove of 
laurels, whence it was supposed to have derived its name. According to 
Virgil, it was the residence of King Latinus, and the capital of Latium, and, 
historically speaking, it appears to have been a place of some importance in 
the time of the Roman kings. 

* Except upon the night ordained) ver. 395. He is supposed obscurely 
to allude here to the " Latinac ferize," or Latin festival, which was celebrated 
at Alba Longa by night, and has been alluded to in a preceding Note. 
Burmann thinks that he alludes to some other rites now unknown, inasmuch 
as Tarquinius Superbus, and not Numa, instituted that festival in honor of 
the confederate towns of Latium. 

* Cities so many deserted) ver. 399. See B. ii. 1. 24, et seq. 

7 By the chained delver) ver. 402. He means that, in consequence of the 
scarcity of freemen, slaves in chains will have to till the lands of Italy. 
Tibullus mentions the chained slave singing at his work, B. ii. El.vi. 1. 26: 
" His legs rattle with the iron, but he sings at his work." Ovid also, in hi 
Tristia, or Lament, B. iv. El. i. 1. 5, mentions the chained "fossor" (though 
there . the word may possibly mean " a miner ") : " This, too, is the reason 



B. TII. 402-420.] PHAKSALIA. 2T1 

the corn-fields of Hesperia tilled ; mouldering with its an- 
cestorial roofs stands the house, about to fall upon none ; 
and Rome, thronged with no citizens of her own, but filled 
with the dregs of the world, did we surrender to that 
extent of slaughter that thenceforth for a period so long no 
civil war could possibly be waged. Of woes so great was 
Phursalia the cause. Let Cannte yield, a fatal name 1 , 
and Allia, long condemned hi the Eoman annals-. Borne 
has marked these as occasions of lighter woes, this day she 
longs to ignoi-e 3 . 

Oh shocking destinies ! The ah* pestilential hi its course, 
and shifting diseases, and maddening famine, and cities 
abandoned to flames, and earthquakes about to hurl popu- 
lous cities 4 headlong, those men might have repaired, whom 
from every side Fortune has dragged to a wretched death, 
while, tearing away the gifts 6 of lengthened ages, she dis- 
plays them, and ranges both nations and chieftains upon the 
plains ; through whom she may, Rome, disclose to thee, as 
thou dost come to ruin, how mighty thou dost fall. The 
more widely she has possessed the world, the more swiftly 
through her prospering destinies has she run. Throughout 
all ages, has every war given subdued nations unto thee ; 

why the miner sings chained with the fetter, when he lightens his heavy 
labour with his untaught numbers." 

1 Cannae yield, a fatal name) ver. 408. See B. ii. 1. 46, and the Note to 



2 Long condemned in the Roman annals) ver. 408. Allia was a river 
about fifteen miles from Rome, near which the Roman army was cut to 
pieces by the Gauls under Brennus. "The 17th day of the Calends of July, 
or the 16th of that month, on which this defeat happened, was ever after 
set down as "ater," or "unlucky," in the. Roman Fasti 

3 This day she longs to ignore) ver. 411. While the Calendar records the 
defeats of the Allia and Cannae, it will not endure to take any notice of the 
disaster of Fharsalia. One of the Scholiasts remarks that Caesar ordered 
that no notice should be taken of this battle, probably, in the Fasti Con- 
sulares. 

4 Populous cities) ver. 414. " Moenia plena." " Fortified cities, full of 
inhabitants." 

8 Tearing away the gifts) ver. 416-17. " Dum munera longi explicat 
eripiens <evi." " While Fortune is now ranging in battle array, for the pur- 
pose of withdrawing them, the gifts which she has in such a lapse of years 
bestowed on all-powerful Rome." Burmann understands this as meaning that 
Fortune is cutting short what, to many, had been destined as the gift of a 
prolonged life. 



272 PHARSALIA. [a vii. 420-441. 

thee has Titan beheld advancing towards the two poles 1 . 
Not much space was there remaining of the eastern earth, 
but what for thee the night, for thee the entire day, for thee 
the whole heavens should speed on, and the wandering stars 
behold all things belonging to Rome. But the fatal day of 
Emathia bore back thy destinies, equal to all these years 2 . 

On this blood-stained morn was it caused that India 
does not shudder 3 at the Latian fasces, and that she does 
not lead the Dahte 4 into walled cities forbidden to wander, 
and that no tightly-girt Consul presses on 5 a Sarmatian 
plough. This is the cause that Parthia is ever owing to 
thee a cruel retribution ; that flying from civil strife, and 
never to return, Liberty has withdrawn beyond the Tigris 
and the Rhine, and, so oft sought by us at hazard of our 
throats 6 , still wanders abroad, a blessing to Germany and 
Scythia, and no further looks back upon Ausonia. Would 
that she had been unknown to our people, and that thou, 
Rome, from the time when first Romulus filled the walls 
founded at the left-hand flight of the vultures from the 
guilty grove, even unto the Thessalian downfall, hadst re- 
mained enslaved. 

Fortune, of the Bruti do I complain 7 . Why have we 
framed the periods of our laws, or why made the years to 

1 Advancing towards the two poles) ver. 422. In her victories approached 
to both the northern and southern poles. 

3 Equal to all these years) ver. 426. " Par omnibus annis." " Able in 
its results to overthrow the work of so many ages." 

3 Caused that India does not shudder) ver. 428. This disaster has cut short 
the victorious progress of Rome, and India needs not fear being subjugated. 

4 She does not lead tf<* Dakce) ver. 429. See the Second Book, 1. 296, 
and the Note to the passage. 

* No tightly-girt Consul presses on) ver. 430. He probably refers to the 
custom of the Roman Consul, in the Gabinian habit, marking out with a 
plough drawn by a cow and a bull the trenches for the foundations of the 
walls of a new city in the subjugated country. Burmann thinks that the 
passage bears reference to the custom of ploughing over the surface of con- 
quered cities which had been razed to the ground, but the expression in the 
previous line, " in moenia ducat," seems to forbid such a construction being 
put upon the passage. 

6 At hazard of our throats) ver. 434. " Jugulo." "With the throat 
presented to the sword;" or, "at the hazard of our lives." 

7 Of the Bruti do I complain) ver. 440. He complains of Lucius Junius 
Brutus, who, by the expulsion of the Tarquins, had introduced liberty into 
Borne. 



B. vii. 441-459.] PHAKSALIA. 273 

take their name from the Consul ? Happy the Arabians, 
and the Medes, and the Eastern lands, which the Fates 
have kept under continued tyrants. Of the nations which 
endure rule our lot is the last, who are ashamed to be 
slaves. Assuredly we have no Divinities ; whereas ages 
are hurried along by blind chance, we falsely allege that 
Jupiter reigns. Will he look down from the lofty skies 
upon the Thessalian carnage, while he is wielding the 
lightnings 1 ? Will he, forsooth, hurl at Pholoe, hurl at (Eta 
with his flames, the groves, too, of the guiltless Rhodope, 
and the pine-woods of Mimas ~, shall Cassius, in 3 prefer- 
ence, smite this head? The stars against Thyestes did he 
urge on, and condemn Argos to sudden night 4 ; shall he 
afford the light of day to Thessaly that wields the kindred 
swords so numerous of brothers and of parents ? 

Mortal affairs are cared for by no God. Still for this 
slaughter do we obtain satisfaction, as much as it is proper 
for the Deities to give to the earth. The civil wars will 
create Divinities 5 equal to the Gods of heaven. The shades 
will Rome adorn with lightnings and with rays and stars; 

1 While Tie is wielding the lightnings) ver. 447-8. " Is it credible that 
Jupiter will rather hurl his thunders against these mountains than against 
the Pharsalian plains or the guilty head of Caesar?" 

2 The pine-woods of Mimas) ver. 450. Mimas was a mountain of Ionia, 
near Colophon, and opposite to the Isle of Chios. It was sacred to Bac- 
chus. 

3 Shall Cassius, in) ver. 451. He alludes to Caius Cassius Longinus, one 
of the murderers of Caesar, who was a violent partisan of the Pompeian fac- 
tion, and was forgiven by Coesar, the man whom he afterwards murdered : 
he must not be confounded with his cousin Quintus Cassius Longinus, the 
tribune of the people, who is mentioned, in B. ii. 1. 266, as leaving Rome to 
join Caesar. 

4 Condemn Argot to sudden night) ver. 451-2. Did Jupiter hurry on 
the night at Argos on beholding the crime committed by Atreus against 
Thyestes ] See B. i. 1. 544, and the Note to the passage. 

* The civil wars will create Divinities) ver. 457. This is probably said in 
a spirit of sarcasm against Nero. He says that one result of the Civil War, 
and indeed a just punishment of the Gods, is the deification of mortals, in 
allusion to the practice of deifying the Roman emperors, which began with 
Julius Caesar. 

8 The shades will Rome adorn) ver. 458. One of the Scholiasts says that 
Ca?sar was represented in his Temple arrayed in the habit of Jove, and 
as wearing rays in resemblance of the sun.. It is, however, more probable 
that Lucan refers to the lightnings and the comet which appeared at the time 
of the death of Caesar, and which were supposed to signify his deification. 

v T 



^74 PHAliSALIA. [B. vii. 459-471. 

and in the temples of the Gods will she swear by the 
shades of men. 

When with a rapid step they have now passed over the 
space that delays the closing moments of destiny, separated 
by a small strip of ground, thence do they look upon the 
bands and seek to recognise their features, where their jave- 
lins are to fall, or what fate is threatening themselves, what 
monstrous deeds they are to perpetrate. Parents they be- 
hold with faces fronting them, and the arms of brothers in 
hostile array, nor do they choose to change their positions *. 
Still, a numbness binds all their breasts; and the cold 
blood, their feelings of affection smitten, congeals hi their 
vitals ; and whole cohorts for a long time hold the javelins 
hi readiness with outstretched arms. 

May the Gods send thee, Crasttnus 2 , not the death 
which is prepared as a punishment for all, but after thy 
end sensation in thy death, hurled by whose hand the 

Indeed, the comet, which appeared for seven days, was supposed to be the 
spirit of Caesar received into the heavens. See the History of Suetonius, 
Caesar, c. 88 ; the Eclogues of Virgil, ix. 1. 47 ; the Epistles of Horace, 
B. ii. Ep. 1. 1. 16 ; and the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. xv. L 841, et seq. 

1 Nor do they choose to change their positions) ver. 466. So bent on each 
other's destruction are they that no one is desirous to change his place, 
and thereby avoid collision with a parent or a brother. May seems to be 
wrong in his translation of this passage, as he renders " nee libuit mutare 
locum," " yet would not change their side." 

* May 'the Gods send thee, Crastinus) ver. 470-1. This Crastinus was an 
old soldier of Caesar, who had been " emeritus," or discharged from service, 
but was now serving as a volunteer in his army. Caesar, in the Civil 
War, B. iii. c. 91, thus relates the circumstance here alluded to : " There 
was in Caesar's army a volunteer of the name of Crastinus, who the year 
before had been first centurion of the tenth legion, a man of distinguished 
bravery. He, when the signal was given, said, ' Follow me, my old 
comrades, and display such exertions in behalf of your general as you have 
resolved to display ; this is our last battle, and when it shall have been won, 
he will recover his dignity, and we our liberty.' At the same time he 
looked back towards Caesar, and said, ' General, I will act in such a man- 
ner to-day, that you will feel grateful to me, living or dead. 1 After utter- 
ing these words he was the first to charge on the right wing, and about one 
hundred and twenty chosen volunteers of the same century followed." In 
c. 94, Caesar says, " In this battle, Crastinus, of whom mention was made 
before, fighting most courageously, lost his life by the wound of a sword in 
the mouth; nor was that* false which he declared when marching to battle; 
for Caesar entertained the highest opinion of his behaviour in that battle, 
and thought him most deserving of his approbation." 



e. vn. 471-401.] PHARSALIA. 275 

javelin commenced the battle, and first stained Thessaly 
with Roman blood. headlong frenzy, when Ceesar with- 
held the darts, was there found any hand more forward ! 
Then was the resounding air rent by clarions 1 , and the 
battle call given by the cornet ; then did the trumpets pre- 
sume to give the signal; then did a crash reach the skies, 
and burst upon the arched top of loftiest Olympus, from 
which the clouds are far removed, and whither no light- 
nings last to penetrate. With its re-echoing valleys Heemus 
received die noise, and gave it to the caves of Pelion again 
to redouble ; Pindus sent forth the uproar, and the rocks of 
Pangoeum resounded, and the crags of (Eta groaned, and 
the sounds of their own fury did they dread re-echoed 
throughout all the land. 

Darts innumerable are scattered abroad with various 
intents. Some wish for wounds, some to fix the javelins 
in the earth, and to keep their hands hi purity. Chance 
hurries everything on, and uncertain Fortune makes those 
guilty, whom she chooses. But how small a part 2 of the 
slaughter is perpetrated with javelins and flying weapons ! 
For civil hatred the sword alone suffices, and guides right 

1 The resounding air rent by clarions) ver. 476-7. In these two lines he 
makes mention of the " lituus" or "clarion," the "cornn," "cornet " or " horn," 
and the " tuba " or " trumpet." " Cornu " seems to have been a general 
name for the horn or trumpet, but here it probably means the same as the 
" buccina " mentioned in B. ii. 1. 689, which see, with the Note to the pas- 
sage. The "tuba" was a straight trumpet, while the " lituus" assumed a 
spiral shape. Lydus says that the "lituus" was the sacerdotal trumpet, 
and that it was employed by Komulus when he proclaimed the title of his 
newly-founded city. Aero says that it was peculiar to the cavalry, while 
the " tuba" belonged to the infantry. The notes of the " lituus" are usually 
described as being harsh and shrill. 

3 But how small a part) ver. 489. Caesar says, in the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 93 : " Our men, when the signal was given, rushed forward with 
their javelins ready to be launched, but perceiving that Pompey's men did 
not run to meet their charge, having acquired experience by custom, and 
being practised in former battles, they of their own accord repressed their 
speed, and halted almost midway, that they might not come up with the 
enemy when their strength was exhausted, and after a short respite, they 
again renewed their course, and threw their javelins, and instantly drew 
their swords, as Caesar had ordered them. Nor did Pompey's men fail at 
this critical moment, for they received our javelins, stood our charge, and 
maintained their ranks ; and, having launched their javelins, had recourse to 
their swords." 

T 2 



276 PHAKSALIA. [B. vn. 491-515. 

hands to Roman vitals. The ranks of Pompey, densely 
disposed in deep bodies, joined their arms, their shields 
closed together in a line 1 ; and, hardly able to find room, 
for moving their right hands and their darts, they stood 
close, and, wedged together, kept their swords sheathed. 

With headlong course the furious troops of Caesar are 
impelled against the dense masses, and, through arms, 
through the foe do they seek a passage. Where the twisted 
coat of mail- presents its links, and the breast, beneath 
a safe covering, lies concealed, even here do they reach 
the entrails, and amid so many arms it is the vitals 
which each one pierces. Civil war does the one army 
suffer, the other wage ; on the one hand the sword stands 
chilled, on Caesar's side every guilty weapon waxes hot. 
Nor is Fortune long, overthrowing the weight of des- 
tinies so vast, in sweeping away the mighty ruins, fate 
rushing on. 

When first the cavalry of Pompey 3 extended his wings 
over the whole plain, and poured them forth along the ex- 
tremities of the battle, the light-armed soldiers, scattered 
along the exterior of the maniples, followed, and sent forth 
their ruthless bands against the foe. There, each nation 
is mingling in the combat with weapons its own ; Roman 
blood is sought by all. On the one side arrows, on the 
other torches and stones are flying, and plummets, melting 
in the tract of air and liquefied with their heated masses*. 
Then do both Iturseans, and Medians, and Arabians, a 

1 Their shields closed together in a line) ver. 493. " Nexis umbonibus " 
probably does not mean that their shields were fastened together, but that 
they stood in close and serried ranks in one continued line. 

4 W/tere the tiristed coat of mail) ver. 498. He alludes to the flexible 
cuirasses or hauberks of chain mail which were worn by the Roman 
" hastati " or spearmen ; probably such as are mentioned by Virgil as made 
of rings, linked or hooked into one another. 

3 Where first the cavalry of Pompey) ver. 506. This part of the battle 
is thus described by Caesar, B. iii. c. 93 : " At the same time Pompey's 
horse, according to their orders, rushed forth at once from his left wing, and 
his whole host of archers poured after them. Our cavalry did not withstand 
their charge, but pave ground a little, upon which Pompey's horse pressed 
them more vigorously, and began to file off in troops and flank our army." 

4 Liquejied with their heated masses) ver. 513. It was a notion of the ancients 
that the stones or metal plummets discharged from their slings became red- 
hot in their course, from the swiftness of their motion, and they occasionally 



B. vii. 515-528.] PHARSALIA. 277 

multitude threatening with loosened bow, never aim their 
arrows, but the ah- alone is sought which impends over the 
plain ; thence fall various deaths. But with no criminality 
of guilt 1 do they stain the foreign steel; around the jave- 
lins stands collected all the guiltiness-. With weapons 
the heaven is concealed, and a night, wrought by the darts, 
hovers over the fields. 

Then did Caesar, fearing lest his front rank mightbe shaken 
by the onset, keep in reserve some cohorts in an oblique 
position behind the standards 3 , and on the sides of his line, 
whither the enemy, scattered about, was betaking himself, 
he suddenly sent forth a column, his own wings unmoved. 
Unmindful of the fight, and to be feared by reason of no 
sense of shame, they openly took to flight; not well icas 
civil warfare ever entrusted to barbarian troops. As soon 

went so far as to assert that they melted and disappeared entirely. Thus, 
Ovid says in the Metamorphoses, B. ii. 1. 727, et seq. : " As when the Ba- 
learic sling throws forth the plummet of lead ; it flies and becomes red-hot in 
its course, and finds beneath the clouds the fires which it had not before ; " 
and B. xiv. 1. 826 : " Just as the leaden plummet, discharged from the 
broad sling, is wont to dissolve itself in mid-air." The " glandes," or 
" plummets " mentioned by Lucan, were called in Greek, ^Ay/JS/Ssf, and 
were of a form between acorns and almonds, cast in moulds. They have 
been frequently dug up in various parts of Greece, and particularly on the 
.plains of Marathon. Some have the device of a thunderbolt, while others 
are inscribed with 5s|a<, " take this." 

1 Hut with no criminality of yuilt) ver. 517. The weapons used by the 
foreign nations are exempt from the criminality of destroying fellow-citizens. 

2 Stands collected all the guiltiness) ver. 519. All the wickedness of the 
warfare is confined to the " pilum," or the javelin used especially by the llo- 
jnan soldiers. See the Note to B. i. 1. 7. 

3 In an oblique position behind the standards) ver. 522. It appears from 
the expression " obliqua," that Caesar had placed these reserved cohorts at 
right angles to his other three lines ; probably keeping them in the back- 
ground, and not in extended line, that they might take the cavalry of Pompey 
by surprise, wheeling round and flanking them. The account given by Lucan 
is not easy to be understood, and the same may be said of that of Caesar, in 
the Civil War, B. iii. c. 93 : " When Caesar perceived this, he gave the 
.signal to his fourth b'ne, which he had formed of the six cohorts. They in- 
stantly rushed forward and charged Pompey's horse with such fury, that not 
.a man of them stood his ground; but all, wheeling about, not only quitted 
their post, but galloped forward to seek a refuge in the highest grounds. By 
their retreat, the archers and slingers, being left destitute and defenceless, 
were all cut to pieces. The cohorts, pursuing their success, wheeled about 
upon Pompey's left wing, whilst his infantry still continued to make buttle, 
and attacked them in the rear." 



278 PHARSALIA. [B. m 328-553. 

as the charger, his breast pierced with the weapon, trod 
upon the limbs of the rider hurled upon his head, each 
horseman fled from the field, and, crowded together, turning 
bridle, the youths rushed on upon their own ranks. Then 
did the carnage lose all bounds, and it was no battle that 
ensued, but on the one hand with their throats 1 , on the other 
with the sword, the war was waged ; nor was the one army 
able to lay low as many as were able to perish on the other 
side. 

Would that, Pharsalia, for thy plains that blood which 
barbarian breasts pour forth would suffice : that the streams 
might be changed by no other gore; that this throng nii^lit 
for thee cover whole fields with bones ; or if thou dost prefer 
to be glutted with Roman blood, spare the others, I en- 
treat ; let the Galatians and Syrians li ve, the Cappadocians 
and the Gauls, and the Iberians from the extremity of the 
world, the Armenians and the Cilicians ; for after the civil 
wars these will form the Roman people. Once commenced, 
the panic reaches all, and to the Fates is an impulse given 
in favour of Caesar. 

They had now come to the strength of Magnus and the 
mid ranks. The war, which, in its wandering course, had 
strayed over whole fields, here paused, and the fortune of 
Ccesar delayed. On this spot no youths collected by the 
aid of kings are waging the war, and no alien hands* wield 
the sword ; this spot contains their brothers, this spot their 
fathers. Here is frenzy, here frantic rage ; here, Caesar, are 
thy crimes. My soul, fly from this portion of the warfare 3 , 
and leave it to the shades of night, and, myself the Poet of 

1 On the one hand iritA their throats) ver. 533. The Pompeians stand only 
to be killed, the people of Caesar fight only to slay. 

* No alien hands) ver. 549. " Rogntae ; " meaning mercenary or foreign 
troops enlisted. 

3 Fly from this portion of the tear/ore) ver. 552. It is singular that in a 
similar manner Caesar omits to give any further particulars of the battle after 
the charge made on the cavalry by his fourth line, except the following few 
words, c. 94 : " At the same time Caesar ordered his third line to advance, 
which till then had not been engaged, but had kept their post Thus, new 
and fresh troops having come to the assistance of the fatigued, and others 
having made an attack on their rear, Pompey's men were not able to main- 
tain their ground, bnt all fled : nor was Caesar deceived in his opinion that 
the victory, as he had declared in his speech to his soldiers, must have its 
beginning with those sue cohorts, which he had placed as a fourth line to 



B. vii. 553-575.] PHARSALIA. 279 



woes so great, let no age learn how great is the licence in 
civil warfare. Perish rather these tears, and perish these 
complaints. Whatever, Rome, in this battle thou hast 
done, upon it I will be silent. 

Here Caesar, the prompting fury of his people, and the 
exciter of their rage, lest upon any side his guilt may prove 
unavailing, goes to and fro around the troops and adds 
flames to their fired hearts; he examines the swords, too 1 , 
which ones are dripping all over with gore, which ones are 
shining stained with blood just at the point only, which hand 
falters in pressing home the sword, who it is that bears 
his weapons but languidly, who tightly grasped, who with 
alacrity wages the war at command, who takes a pleasure in 
fighting, who changes countenance on a fellow-citizen being 
slain ; he surveys the carcases strewed over the wide plains. 
The wounds of many, about to pour forth all their blood, 
he himself stanches 2 , by placing his hand against them. 
Wherever he roves, just as Bellona :i , shaking her blood- 
stained whip, or Mars inciting 4 the Bistonians, if with 
severe lashes he urges on his chariot steeds frightened 
by the ^Egis of Pallas, a vast night of crimes and slaughters 
ensues, and groans like one immense cry, and arms resound 
with the weight of the falling breast, and swords shivered 
against swords. 

He himself with Ins own hand supplies falchions, and 
provides darts, and bids them mangle the opposing faces 5 

oppose the horse. For by them the cavalry was routed ; by them the 
archers and slingers were cut to pieces ; by them the left wing of Pompey's 
army was surrounded, and obliged to be the first to fly." 

1 He examines the swords, too) ver. 560-65. All this is only an invidious 
way of informing us that Caesar was everywhere, a witness to the martial 
prowess of his soldiers. 

2 He himself stanches) ver. 567. He stanches the blood of his men, by 
pressing down the severed vein with his fingers. 

3 Just as Bellona) ver. 568. Bellona, the wife or sister of Mars, is 
represented also by Horace and Virgil, as brandishing a blood-stained 
scourge. See B. i. 1. 565, and the Note to the passage. 

4 Or Mars inciting) ver. 569. " Mavors." Havers, or Mavors, was the 
original form of the name " Mars." Varro says that Manners was the Sabine 
name of the God ; but the word is more generally thought to have belonged 
to the Oscan dialect. Mars was especially an object of worship with the 
Bistonian or Thracian nations. 

4 The opposing faces) ver. 575. It is probable that he here obscurely 
refers to the order given by Caesar to his men to aim at the faces of the Eo- 



280 PHARSALIA. [B. vii. 575-591. 

with their weapons. He himself urges on the ranks ; and 
onward drives the backs of his own men ; those slackening 
he forces on with blows of his. lance reversed. He forbids 
their hands to be directed against the common people, and 
points out the Senators 1 . He knows well which is the blood 
of the state, which are the vitals of the republic ; in which 
direction he is to speed on to Home 2 , in which spot stands 
to be smitten the final liberty of the world. Mingled with 
the second rank :i , the nobles and the venerated bodies are 
pressed upon by the sword ; Lepidi they slay, Metelli, too, 
they slay, Corvini as well, and those with the names of Tor- 
quatus 4 , often the rulers of kings, and the chiefs of men, 
thee, Magnus, excepted. 

There, concealing thy features 3 in a plebeian helmet, and 
unknown to the foe, what a weapon, Brutus , thou didst 
wield! O honor to the state, final hope of the Senate, 
last name of a race for ages so renowned, rush not too 
rashly through the midst of the foe, and hasten not for 

man patricians. One of the Commentators, Janus Rutgersius, thinks that 
the meaning is, that Caesar, being afraid that the spirits of his men might 
be damped on beholding the countenances of their relatives and friends, 
had given an order that aim should be taken at the faces of all indis- 
criminately, so that they might not be able to recognize individuals; and that 
this conjecture is supported by what is said in 11. 320 and 627. 

1 Points out the Senators) ver. 57S. He points out the patricians as the 
especial objects of attack. 

2 He is to speed on to Rome) ver. 580. Through the shedding of whose 
blood he will arrive at the sovereignty of Rome. 

3 Mingled irlt/i the eecond rank) ver. 581. Patricians are slaughtered 
indiscriminately with those of the Equestrian order. 

4 And those teith the names of Torquatus) ver. 584. It does not appear 
that the names have come down to us of any of the Lepidi, Metelli, Corvini, 
or Torquati, who fell at the battle of Pharsalia. 

5 There, concealing tJty features) ver. 586. He means that Brutus was dis- 
guised as a common soldier, for the purpose of slaying Caesar if he could find 
the opportunity. If this story is true, it certainly contrasts unfavourably with 
the fact that at this battle Cx-sar had given orders to his men not to slay 
Brutus, probably for the sake of his mother Servilia, who had implored Caesar 
to spare him. After the battle Brutus escaped to Larissa, but did not accom- 
pany Pompey any further. Here he wrote a letter to Caesar entreating his 
pardon, which was generously granted by the conqueror without hesitation ; 
on which, according to Plutarch, Brutus informed Caesar of Pompey's flight 
to Egypt. 

* What a veapon, Brutus) ver. 5S7. " Quod ferrum," meaning, " a sword 
intended i'or what a purpose." 



B. vii. 591-607.] PHARSALIA. 281 

thyself too soon the fatal Philippi, doomed to perish in a 
Thessaly of thy own 1 . Nothing there dost thou' avail by 
aiming at Caesar's throat ; not yet has he arrived at the 
summit of power, and having surpassed that human eleva- 
tion, by which all things are swayed, has by the Fates been 
made deserving of so noble a death. Let him live, and that 
he may fall the victim of Brutus, let him reign. 

Here perished all the glory of thy native land ; in large 
heaps patrician corpses lay on the plain a , the vulgar not 
intermingled. Still, however, amid the slaughter of illustrious 
men the death of the valiant Domitius 3 was distinguished, 
whom the Destinies led through every reverse 4 . Never did 
the fortunes of Magnus fail without him ; conquered by 
Csesar so oft, his liberty saved, he dies. Then joyously did 
he fall amid a thousand wounds, and he rejoiced to have been 
spared a second pardon 5 . Caesar beheld him rolling his 
limbs amid the clotted blood, and, upbraiding him, ex- 
claimed, "Now, my successor, Domitius", thou dost abandon 
the arms of Magnus; without thee now is the warfare 
waged." 

1 In a Thessaly of thy own} ver. 592. The Poet here falls into his usual 
error of confounding Thessaly with Thrace. 

2 Patrician corpses lay on the plain) ver. 598. Because in especial Caesar 
had ordered those of patrician rank to be slain. Caesar thus recounts the 
losses of boih sides in this battle ; Civil War, B. jii. c. 99 : " In that battle, 
no more than two hundred privates were missing, but Caesar lost about thirty 
centurions, valiant officers ; of Pompey's army there fell about fifteen thou- 
sand ; but upwards of twenty-four thousand were made prisoners ; for even 
the cohorts which were stationed in the forts, surrendered to Sulla. Several 
others took shelter in the neighbouring states." 

3 Death of the valiant Domitius) ver. 600. Caesar says, in the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 99 : " Lucius Domitius fleeing from the camp to the mountains, 
his strength being exhausted by fatigue, was slain by the cavalry." 

* Through every reverse) ver. 600. He alludes to the ill success which 
always attended Domitius in his campaigns against Caesar. See 1. 479, and 
the Note to the passage. 

4 To have been spared a second pardon) ver. 604. In allusion to the 
pardon which he received from Caesar at Cornnium. See B. ii. 1. 512-522. 

6 My successor, Domitius) ver. 607. Domitius was designed by Ponipey 
and the Senate to be Caesar's successor in the province of Gaul. There is 
no doubt that this passage is the pure result of Lmcan's malevolent feelings 
against the memory of Caesar, as it is pretty clear that Caesar was not even 
present at his death. 



282 PHARSALIA. [u. TIL 608-641. 

He spoke, but the breath of Domitius struggling in his 
breast sufficed him for a voice, and he thus opened his dying 
lips : " Beholding thee, Caesar, not yet in possession of the 
direful reward of thy crimes, but doubtful of thy fate, and 
less mighty than thy son-in-law, I go to the shades free 
and void of care, Magnus being my leader : for thee to be 
subdued in the ruthless warfare, and to be about to pay a 
heavy penalty to Pompey and to us, while I die, it is allowed 
me to hope." Life fled from him having said no more, and 
dense shades pressed upon his eyes. 

I scruple to expend tears at the downfall of the world 
upon deaths innumerable, and, tracing them out, to enquire 
into individual fates ; through whose vitals the deadly wound 
made its way ; who it was that trod upon entrails scattered 
on the ground ; who, the hostile sword being thrust into his 
jaws, dying, breathed forth his soul ; who fell down at the 
blow ; who, while his limbs dropped down, lopped off, stood 
upright; who received the darts right through the breast, or 
whom the lance pinned to the plain ; whose blood, the veins 
being severed, gushed through the air, and fell upon the 
arms of his foe ; who pierced the breast of his brother, and 
that he might be able to spoil the well-known carcase, threw 
afar the head cut off; who mangled the features of a parent, 
and by his extreme fury would prove to lookers-on that he 
whom he stabbed was not his father. 

No death is deserving of a lament its own, and no indi- 
viduals have we the leisure to mourn. Pharsalia had not 
those features of combat which other slaughters lutd ' ; there 
did Home perish by the fates of individuals, here by mul- 
titudes ; that which was there the death of a soldier, was 
here that of a nation ; there flowed Achaean blood, Pontic 
and Assyrian ; the gore of all did the Roman torrent forbid 
to remain and stagnate upon the plain. Greater wounds do 
nations receive from this battle-field than their own times 
can endure ; that which perishes is more than life and 
safety ; to all ages of the world are we laid prostrate ; by 
these swords is every generation conquered which shall be 

1 Which other slaughters had) ver. 633. Such as the Roman defeats at 
Allia, Trebia, Thrasymenus, Tieinum, and Cannae. 



B. vn. 641-673.] PHARSALU. 283 

a slave. How have the succeeding race, or how the grand- 
children, deserved to be born to thraldom? Did we wield 
arms with fear? Or did we cover up our throats? The 
punishment of others' fears sits heavy upon our necks. If, 
Fortune, to those born after the battle thou dost give a 
tyrant, thou shouldst have given warfare as well. 

Now had the wretched Magnus perceived that the Gods 
and the destinies of Eome had forsaken him ; hardly pre- 
vailed upon by the whole slaughter to rebuke his own for- 
tune. He stood upon a rising ground of the plain, on 
high, whence he could behold all the carnage scattered over 
the Thessalian fields, which, while the battle hindered, lay 
concealed. With weapons so many he beheld his destinies 
attacked, so many bodies lying prostrate, and himself pe- 
rishing with bloodshed so great. Nor yet, as is the way of 
the unfortunate, does he take pleasure in dragging, together 
with himself, everything to sink, by involving nations in his 
own ruin ; that after himself the greatest part of the Latian 
multitude may survive, he endures even yet to deem the 
inhabitants of heaven worthy of his prayers, and reflects 
upon this solace of his misfortune 1 . 

" Forbear, ye Gods of heaven," he says, " to lay all na- 
tions prostrate ; the world still existing and Eome surviving, 
Magnus can possibly be wretched. If still more wounds 
of mine please you, I have a wife, I have sons ; so many 
pledges have I given to the Fates. Is it too little for a civil 
war if myself and mine thou dost overwhelm ? Is our down- 
fall a trifle, the world being exempted? Why dost thou 
rend everything; why dost thou strive to destroy all things? 
Now, Fortune, nothing is my own." 

Thus he speaks, and he rides around the arms and the 
standards and the smitten troops on every side, and he calls 
them back as they rush upon a speedy death, and denies 
that he is of value so great. Nor to the chieftain is courage 
wanting to rush upon the swords, and to submit to death 
with throat or with breast ; but he fears lest, the body of 
Magnus laid low, the soldiers may not fly, and over the 
chieftain the earth may fall ; or else from Csesar's eyes he 

1 Reflects upon this solace of his misfortune) ver. 653. Eevolves in his 
mind appeals to the clemency of the Gods, by way of some consolation for 
the magnitude of his calamities. 



284 PHARSALIA. [u. vii. 673-691. 

wishes to remove his death. In vain. Unhappy man, to thy 
father-in-law, willing to behold it 1 , must the head be shown 
in some place. But thou, too, his wife, art the cause of his 
flight, and thy features, so well remembered; and by the Fates 
has it been decided that he shall die in thy presence. 

Then, spurred on, the charger bears Magnus away 2 from 
the combat, not fearing the darts at his back, and showing 
magnanimity amid this extremity of fate. No sighing, no 
weeping, is there, and his grief is deserving of respect, its 
dignity preserved, such as, Magnus, it becomes thee to show 
for the woes of Home. "With countenance not changed 
thou dost look upon Emathia ; neither shall the successes 
of war behold thee proud, nor its losses see thee dejected ; and 
as much as faithless Fortune has proved below thee when 
exulting in three triumphs, so much has she when unfor- 
tunate. Now, the weight of fate laid aside, free from care 
thou dost depart ; now thou hast leisure to look back upon 
joyous times ; hopes never to be fulfilled have gone ; what 
thou wast thou now hast the opportunity to know. 

Fly from direful battles, and call the Gods to witness, 
that not one who continues in arms 3 now, Magnus, dies 

1 Willing to lehold it) ver. 675. " It is fated that Crcsar must be the 
witness of thy death, which he will willingly be." 

a The charger bears Magnus away) ver. 677. Caesar, in the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 96, thus records the flight of Pompey after the battle : " Pompey, 
as soon as our men had forced the trenches, mounting his horse, and stripping 
off his general's habit, went hastily out of the back gate of the camp and 
galloped with all speed to Larissa nor did he stop there, but, with the 
same dispatch, collecting a few of his flying troops, and halting neither day 
nor night, he arrived at the sea-side, attended by only thirty horse, and went 
on board a victualling ship, often complaining, as we have been told, that he 
had been so deceived in his expectation, that he was almost persuaded that 
he had been betrayed by those from whom he expected victory, as they be- 
gan the flight." 

3 Not one vJw continues in arms) ver. 690. He alludes to the battle 
which continued at the camp of Pompey after he himself had fled ; we find 
it thus mentioned in the Civil AYar, 13. iii. c. 97 : " The camp of Pompey 
was bravely defended by the cohorts which had been left to guard it, but 
with much more spirit by the Thracians and foreign auxiliaries. For the 
soldiers who had fled for refuge to it from the field of battle affrighted and 
exhausted by fatigue, having thrown away their arms and military standards, 
had their thoughts more engaged on their further escape than on the defence 
of the camp. Nor could the troops who were posted on the battlements long 
withstand the immense number of our darts, but, fainting under their wounds, 



B. vii. 691-714.] PHARSALIA. 285 

for thee ; just as Africa to be lamented with her reverses, 
and just as fatal Munda, and the carnage on the Pharian 
stream ', so too, after thy departure is the greatest portion 
of the Thessalian fight. No longer now shall Pompey's 
name be revered by nations throughout the world, nor be 
the prompter of the war ; but the pair of rivals which we 
always have, will be Liberty and Cfesar ; and thyself ex- 
pelled thence, the dying Senate shows that it was for itself 
it fought. Driven afar, does it not give thee pleasure to 
have left the warfare, and not to have beheld those horrors, 
the troops drenched hi gore ? 

Look back upon the rivers clouded by the influx of blood, 
and have pity upon thy father-in-law. With what breast 
shall he enter Eome, made more happy by these fields ? 
Whatever, an exile alone in unknown regions, whatever, 
placed in the power of the Pharian tyrant, thou shalt en- 
dure, believe the Gods, believe the lasting favour of the 
Fates, to conquer was still worse. Forbid lamentations to 
resound, prevent the people from weeping; forego tears 
and mourning. As much shall the world venerate the woes 
of Pornpey as his successes. Free from care, with no sup- 
pliant features behold potentates ; behold cities won by thee, 
and kingdoms bestowed, -/Egypt and Libya, and select a re- 
gion for thy death. 

Larissa, as the first witness ~ of thy downfall, beholds thy 
head, noble and unconquered by the Fates. With all her 
citizens 3 does she pour forth her entire strength through 

quitted the place, and under the conduct of their centurions and tribunes 
fled, without stopping, to the high mountains which joined the camp." In 
c. 98 we learn that these capitulated to Caesar. 

1 Tke carnage on tfce Pharian stream) ver. 692. He probably means the 
Alexandrian war, a sequel to the Civil War. The meaning is, " Neither the 
battle commenced at Pharsalia after the flight of Pompey, nor yet the war 
waged in Africa by Scipio, Cato, and Julia, nor yet the battle of Munda 
fought by Cneius and Sextus, the sons of Pompey, nor yet the Alexandrian 
war, fought by the Egyptians against Caesar, can be said to have been en- 
gaged in for the cause of Pompey, but rather in a struggle where Caesar and 
Liberty were the antagonists." 

2 Larissa, as the first witness) ver. 712. There were several places of this 
name, and two in Thessaly, one in Pelasgiotis, the other in Phthiotis, near 
the Maliun Gulf; the latter is probably the one to which Pompey fled. 

3 With all her citizens) ver. 714. This does not agree with the account 
given by Caesar of the flight of Pompey through Larissa without staying 
there. See the Note to 1. 677- 



286 PHARSALIA, [u. vn. 7H-742. 

the walls ; weeping they send before to thee, as though suc- 
cessful, gifts to meet thee on thy way ; tlieir temples, their 
houses they open ; themselves they wish to be partners in. 
thy reverses. It is clear that much of thy illustrious name 
is left; and less than thy former self alone, thou canst again 
urge all nations to arms, and again resort to the fatality of 
war. But, " What need has a conquered man of nations 
or of cities?" he says; "put faith in the conqueror." Thou, 
Caesar, still on the high heap of carnage art wading amid 
the entrails of thy country ; but now does thy son-in-law 
present the nations unto thee *. 

The charger bears Pompey away from there ; sighs and 
tears follow him; and many a rebuke of the multitude 
against the relentless Gods. Now, Magnus, to thee is 
granted real experience of the love which thou didst seek, 
and its reward. While prosperous one knows not that he 
is beloved ~. 

Caesar, when he beheld that the fields had sufficiently 
overflowed with Hesperian blood, now thinking that he 
ought to spare the swords and the hands of his men, left the 
troops to live as though worthless lives, and about to perish 
for no purpose. But, that the camp may not invite them 
back when routed, and rest by night dispel their fears, forth- 
with he resolves to attack the entrenchments of the enemy, 
while Fortune waxes hot, while terror effects everything, 
not fearing lest this command may prove harsh to soldiers 
wearied and overpowered with the battle. Through no great 
exhortation are the soldiers to be led to the plunder : 

" Men, we have an abundant victory," says he ; " for our 
blood the reward is now remaining 3 , which it is my office to 
point out ; for I will not call it bestowing that which each 
one will give unto himself. Behold, the camp, filled with 
all kinds of metal, is open ; here lies the gold torn from the 
Hesperian nations, and the tents are covering the treasures 

1 Present the nations unto thee) vcr. 723. Pompey, in his hatred of blood- 
shed, surrenders unto thee the mastery of nations. 

* Knows not that lie is beloved) ver. 727. Because he might suppose that 
regard was had rather to his elevated position than to himself. 

3 The reward is now remaining) yer. 738. Caesar says the contrary in 
his Civil War, B. hi. c. 97 : " Caesar having possessed himself of Pompey's 
camp, urged his soldiers not to be too intent on plunder, and lose the oppor- 
tunity of completing their conquest" 



B. vn. 742-763.] PHARSALIA. 287 

of the East. The collected wealth of so many kings and of 
Magnus together, waits for possessors; make haste, soldiers, 
to get before those whom you pursue ; and let the wealth, 
be torn from the conquered which Pharsalia has made your 
own." 

And no more having said, he urged them on frantic and 
blinded with greed for gold, to rush over swords, and upon 
the carcases of parents, and to tread under foot the slaugh- 
tered chieftains. What trench, what rampart could with- 
stand them seeking the reward of war and of crimes ? On- 
ward they flew to know for how great wages they had been 
guilty. They found indeed, the world having been spoiled, 
full many a mass of bullion heaped up * for the expenses 
of the wars ; but it did not satisfy minds craving for every- 
thing. Though they should seize whatever gold the Ibe- 
rian digs up -', whatever the Tagus yields, whatever the 
enriched Arimaspian 3 gathers from the surface of the 
sands, they will think that this criminality has been sold at 
a trifling price. When the victor has bespoken for himself 
the Tarpeian towers 4 , when he has promised himself every- 
thing in hopes of the spoil of Rome, he is deceived in 
plundering a camp alone. 

The unscrupulous commonalty take their slumbers upon 
the Patrician sods 5 ; the worthless private soldier presses 
the couches left empty by kings ; and on the beds of fathers, 

1 Full many a mass of lullion heaped up) ver. 753. Caesar gives the 
following short account of what was found in Pompey's camp, J3. iii. c. 96 : 
" In Pompey's camp you might see arbours in which tents were laid, a large 
quantity of plate set out, the floors of the tents covered with fresh sods, the 
tents of Lucius Lentulus and others shaded with ivy, and many other things 
which were proofs of excessive luxury, and a confidence of victory ; so that it 
might readily be inferred that they had no apprehensions of the issue of the 
day, as they indulged themselves in unnecessary pleasures, and yet upbraided 
with luxury Caesar's army, distressed and suffering troops, who had always 
been in want of common necessaries." 

2 Whatever gold the Iberian digs up) ver. 755. See the Note to B. iv. 
1. 298. The Tagus, in Portugal, was noted in the times of the Romans for 
its golden sands. 

3 Tlie enriched Arimaspian) ver. 756. See B. iii. 1. 281, and the Note to 
the passage. 

4 Bespoken for himself the Tarpeian towers) ver. 758. Not content with 
the spoil, their hopes were fixed upon sacking the Capitol (in which was the 
public treasury) of Rome. 

4 Take their slumbers upon the Patrician sods) ver. 761. See the Note 
to 1. 753. 



288 PHABSAMA. [B. vn. 763-784. 

and on those of brothers the guilty men lay their limbs ; 
whom a frenzied rest, and frantic slumbers agitate ; wretched, 
they revolve the Thessalian combat in their breasts. The 
ruthless bloodshed stands before them all in their sleep, 
and in all their thoughts they brandish arms, and, the hilt 
away, their hands are hi motion. You would suppose that 
the plains were groaning, and that the guilty earth had ex- 
haled spirits, and that the whole air was teeming with 
ghosts, and the night above with Stygian horrors. Of them, 
wretched men, does victory demand a sad retribution, and 
sleep presents hissings and flames ' ; the shade of the slaugh- 
tered fellow-citizen is there ; his own image of terror weighs 
heavy upon each. This one sees the features of aged men, 
that one the figures of youths ; another one do the carcases 
of brothers affright throughout all his slumbers; in this 
breast is a father ; with Caesar are the ghosts of all ~. 

No otherwise, not purified as yet at the Scythian altar 3 , 
did Orestes, descendant of Pelops, behold the features of 
the Eumenides ; nor, when Pentheus raved, or when Agave 
had ceased to rave 4 , were they more sensible of astounding 
tumults in their minds. Him do all the swords, which 
either Pharsalia has beheld or the day of vengeance is des- 
tined to behold, the Senate unsheathing them, upon that 
night oppress ; him do the monsters of hell scourge. Alas ! 
how vast a punishment does his conscience- stricken mind 



1 Presents hissings and flames) ver. 772. The hissings of the Furies as 
they shake their burning brands and viperous locks. 

2 With Caesar are the ghosts of all) ver. 776. " Each one sees the spirit 
of some slain relative, but Caesar is haunted by the ghosts of all." 

3 Not purified at ike Scythian altar) ver. 777. When Orestes, the son of 
Agamemnon and descendant of Pelops, had killed his mother Clytemnestra, 
he was haunted by the Furies, until his sister Iphigenia, at the altar of the 
Tauric Diana in Scythia, of whom she was the priestess, had purified him ; 
from which circumstance the Furies were said to have received, as a Euphe- 
mism, their name of Eumenides. 

4 When Pentheus raved, or when Agave had ceased to rave) ver. 780. 
" Quum fureret, Pentheus, ant quum desisset, Agave." This line, differently 
punctuated, may be translated two different ways. " When Pentheus raged, 
or when Agave ceased to rage," or " Than Penthens did, when Agave raged 
or when she ceased to rage." The former, though not adopted by Grotius, is 
probably the correct translation. Probably the contempt with which Pen- 
theus regarded the rites of Bacchus (for which he was torn to pieces by hia 
mother and the Bacchanalian women) is the madness or frenzy here alluded 
to by the Poet 



B. vii. 784-810.] PHAKSALIA. 289 

inflict upon him l in his wretchedness, in that, Pompey sur- 
viving, he beholds Styx, hi that he beholds the shades below, 
and Tartarus heaped upon him in his slumbers ! 

Still, having suffered all these things, after the bright day 
has unveiled to him the losses of Pharsalia, not at all does 
the aspect of the place call away his eyes riveted upon the 
fatal fields. He beholds rivers swollen with gore, and 
he looks upon bodies equalling in heaps the lofty hills, and 
piles flattened down hi corrupted gore, and he counts the 
people of Magnus 2 ; and that spot is made ready for a 
banquet, from which he may recognize their features and 
faces as they lie. He is delighted not to see the Emathian 
ground, and to survey with his eyes the plains lying hid 
beneath the carnage; in the blood does he behold For- 
tune and the Gods of heaven his own. 

And that ha his fury he may not lose the joyous spectacle 
of his crimes, he denies the fires of the pile to the 
wretched slain, and exposes Emathia to a noisome atmo- 
sphere. Not him do the Carthaginian burier of the Consul 3 , 
and Cannae, lighted up with the Libyan torch, instruct how 
to observe the customs of men with regard to his foes ; but 
he remembers, his wrath not yet satiated with slaughter, that 
they were his own fellow-citizens. Not individual graves, 
and separate funeral piles do we ask ; grant but one fire to 
Avhole nations ; and in no distinct flames let the bodies be 
burned. Or if vengeance on thy son-in-law pleases thee, 
heap up the groves of Pindus ; pile up the woods raised 
aloft with the oaks of (Eta ; let Pompey from the mam be- 
hold the Thessalian flames. 

Nought by this wrath dost thou avail ; whether putrefac- 
tion, or whether the pile destroys the carcases, it matters 

1 Inflict upon him) ver. 784. " Donat ; " this word may admit of two 
interpretations : " How much punishment does his conscience remit to him, 
by seeing the horrors of hell, Pompey being yet alive, whereas on his death 
they will be increased?" or, " How great pangs does his conscience cause him 
while seeing," &c. 

1 He counts Ike people of Magnus) ver. 792. No doubt this is an un- 
truth, having its origin in the Poet's imagination. Caesar was more humane 
than most of the conquerors of ancient times. 

3 Carthaginian burier of the Consul) ver. 799. Hannibal had the body 
of Paulus JEmilins, the Roman Consul, who was slain at the battle of Cannae, 
burned, with all the funeral honours due to his rank. 

U 



200 PHARSALU. [u. vn. 810-831* 

not ; nature receives back everything into her placid bosom, 
and an end of themselves to themselves do the bodies owe. 
These nations, Cfesar, if now the fire does not consume ///<//(, 
with the earth it will consume *, with the waters of the deep 
it will consume. One pile in common is left for the world '-', 
destined to mingle the stars with its bones. Whithersoever 
Fortune shall summon thine own, thither these souls as well 
are wending. Not higher than they shalt thou ascend into 
the air, not in a more favoured spot shalt thou lie beneath 
Stygian night. Death is secure from Fortune ; the earth re- 
ceives everything which she has produced ; he who has no 
urn is covered by the heavens. Thou, to whom nations are 
paying the penalty by a death xmgraced with burial, why 
dost thou fly from this slaughter ? Why dost thou desert 
the carnage-smelling fields ? Quaff these waters, Csesar ; 
inhale, if thou canst, this air :J . But from thee do the 
putrefying nations snatch the Pharsalian fields, and, the 
victor put to flight, possess the plains. 

Not only the Htemonian, but the Bistonian wolves 4 came 
to the direful banquet of the war, and the lions left Pholoe, 
scenting the carnage of the bloody combat. Then did 
bears desert their dens, obscene dogs their abodes and 
homes, and whatever besides with acute scent was sensible 
of the air impure and tainted by carrion. And now the 

1 With the earih it mill consume) ver. 813. At the time when the world 
shall burn in the universal conflagration. 

2 One pile in common is left for the world) ver. 814. Plato, in the 
Timaeus, expresses a belief that the world will be destroyed by a universal 
conflagration. Cicero, in his Treatise on the Nature of the Gods, speaks of the 
world being subjected in cycles to the action of fire and water. Ovid 
says, in the Metamorphoses, B. i. L 256-7 : " He remembers, too, that it 
was in the decrees of Fate, that a time should come, at which the sea, the 
earth, and the palace of heaven, seized by the flames, should be burned, 
and the laboriously-wrought fabric of the universe should be in danger of 
perishing." Lactantius also mentions that the Sibyls predicted that the 
world should perish by fire. Seneca, in his Consolation to Marcia and 
his Quaestiones Naturales, mentions the same destined termination of the 
presen* state of the universe. It was a doctrine of the Stoic philosophers 
that the stars were nurtured with moisture, and that on the cessation of this 
nourishment the conflagration of the universe would ensue. 

3 Inhale, if thou canst, this air) ver. 822. " Hoc utere cffilo." Literally, 
"use this heaven ; " alluding to the air being tainted by the bodies of the dead. 

4 Bistonian wolves) ver. 826. The wolves scented the dead even from 
distant Thrace. 



B. v-n. 831-857.] PHAESALIA. 291 

fowls of the air, that long had followed the civic warfare, 
flocked together. You, hirds, who are wont to change l the 
Thracian winters for the Nile, departed later than usual 2 for 
the balmy south. Never with vultures so numerous did the 
heavens cover themselves, or did wings more numerous 
beat the air. Every grove sent forth its fowls, and every tree 
dripped with gouts of gore from the blood-stained birds. 

Full oft upon the features of the victor and the impious 
standards did either blood or corrupt matter flow down from 
the lofty sky, and from its now weary talons the bird threw 
down the limbs. And thus, not all the people were reduced 
to bones, and, torn to pieces, disappeared in the beasts of 
prey ; the entrails within they cared not for, nor were they 
greedy to suck out all the marrow ; they lightly tasted of the 
limbs. Loathed, the greatest part of the Latian multitude 
lay; which the sun, and the showers, and lapse of time, 
mingled, when decomposed, with the Emathian earth. 

Thessaly, unhappy land, with what guilt so great hast 
thou offended the Gods of heaven, that thee alone with 
deaths so numerous, with the fatal results of crimes so 
numerous, they should afflict ? What length of time is suf- 
ficient for forgetful antiquity to pardon thee the calamities 
of the warfare ? What crop of corn will not rise discoloured 
with its tinted blade ? With what ploughshare wilt thou not 
wound a Roman ghost ? First shall fresh combats ensue 3 , 
and for a second crime shalt thou afford the fields not yet 
dry from this bloodshed. Should it be allowed us to over- 
throw all the tombs of our ancestors, both the sepulchres 
that stand, and those which beneath the ancient roots 4 



1 You, lirds, who are wont to change) ver. 832. He uses the licence of the 
Poet in making the Thracian cranes scent the dead and hasten to feed upon 
them. Buffon admits that they are carnivorous as well as granivorous, but 
only to the extent of feeding upon worms, insects, and small reptiles. See 
B. iii. 1. 199, and B. v. 1. 512. 

2 Departed later than usual) ver. 833. Inasmuch as they stopped short 
in Thessaly, on their way to the banks of the Nile. 

3 Shalt fresh combats ensue) ver. 853. The Poet commits his usual error 
of taking Philippi to be identical with Pharsalia ; a mistake, as already men- 
tioned, common to him with others of the Latin poets. 

4 Beneath the ancient roots) ver. 856. " Radice vetusta." One of the 
Scholiasts takes "radice" here to mean the roots of the trees which had 
taken fast hold of the foundation of the tombs, and thinks that fig-trees 

U 2 



292 PHARSALIA. [B. vii. 857-872. 

have emptied their urns, their structures burst asunder; 
ashes more numerous are ploughed up in the furrows of 
the Hamionian earth, and more bones are struck against by 
the harrows that cultivate the fields. 

No mariner would have loosened the cable from the 
Emathian shore, nor any ploughman have moved the 
earth, the grave of the Roman race ; the husbandmen, 
too, would have fled from the fields of the ghosts ; the 
thickets would have been without flocks ; and no shep- 
herd would have dared to allow to the cattle the grass 
springing up from our bones ; and, as though uninhabitable 
by men either by reason of the tract of unendurable heat, 
or of freezing, bare and unknown thou wouldst have lain, 
if thou hadst not only first, but alone, been guilty of the 
criminality of the warfare. 

Gods of heaven, be it allowed us to hate this hurtful 
land ! Why do ye render guilty 1 the whole, why absolve 
the whole world ? The carnage of Hesperia 2 , and the 
tearful wave of Pachynus, and Mutina, and Leucas, have 
rendered Philippi free from guilt. 

are alluded to, which were planted near the graves, at least of the more 
humble classes. Juvenal and Martial mention a superstition that these trees 
grow from the liver of the dead, and are sible to penetrate even through rocks. 
Lemaire thinks that " radice vetusta " merely means the lowest foundations 
of the tombs themselves worn out with old age. 

1 Why do ye render guilty) ver. 870. " By setting the example of blood- 
shed you lead the world to be guilty; by the readiness with which it 
follows your example, it shows itself equally guilty." 

* The carnage of Hesperia) ver. 871-2. He alludes to the battle of 
Munda in Spain, where the forces of Pompey were defeated; of Mutina, 
where the Consuls Hirtius and Pansa were defeated ; (see B. i. 1. 41, and the 
Note to the passage ;) of Actium, which was fought by Augustus and An- 
tony, near the Leucadian Promontory ; and of Naulochus and Mylae off the 
coast of Sicily (of which Pachynus was a Promontory), where M". Vipsanius 
Agrippa, the lieutenant of Augustus, defeated Sextus, the younger son of 
Pompey, and destroyed his naval supremacy. 



BOOK THE EIGHTH. 

CONTENTS. 

Pompey arrives at the sea-shore in his flight, 1-34. He embarks for Leshos 
to join Cornelia, whose apprehensions are described, 35-49. He 
arrives at Lesbos, 50-71. He consoles his wife, 72-85. Cornelia's an- 
swer, 86-105. The people of Hitylene welcome Pompey, 106-127. He 
commends their fidelity, 128-146. He leaves Lesbos, taking Cornelia with 
him, amid the regrets of the inhabitants, 147-158. At night he ad- 
dresses the pilot of the ship and orders him to avoid the coasts of Italy 
and Thessaly, and to leave to fortune the course of the ship, 159-201. He 
despatches Deiotarus to seek aid for his cause, 202-243. And then sails past 
Ephesus, Samos, Khodes, Pamphylia, and Taurus, 244-255. Arriving in 
Cilicia he addresses his companions, and recommends them to take refuge 
with Fhraates, the king of Parthia, as he suspects the fidelity of the Egyp- 
tians and Numidians, 256-327. He is opposed by Lentulus, who advises 
him to take refuge with Ptolemy, the king of Egypt, 328-455. He follows 
the advice of Lentulus, and proceeds to Pelusium, 456-466. The ministers 
of Ptolemy are in trepidation, and deliberate what steps to take, 467-475. 
Pothinus urges the King to slay Pompey, 476-535. Achillas is commis- 
sioned by Ptolemy to do so, 536-538. The Poet expresses his grief and 
indignation, 539-560. Pompey goes on board a small boat for the shore, 
561-595. He is there murdered in the sight of Cornelia by Septimius 
and Achillas, 596-620. His last words, 621-636. The lamentations 
of Cornelia, 637-662. Septimius cuts off his head, and gives it to 
Achillas, who carries it to Ptolemy, 663-686. By whose order it is 
embalmed, 687-691. The Poet deplores the fete of Pompey, 692-711. 
Cordus, an attendant of Pompey, burns the body on the shore, and bury- 
ing the bones places over them a stone with an inscription, 712-793. The 
Poet again laments his fate, and concludes with imprecations against 
treacherous Egypt, 794-872. 

Now, beyond the vales of Hercules * and the woody 
Tempe, seeking the desert hy-paths of the Hsemonian 
wood 2 , Magnus, urging on the steed exhausted with the 
flight and refusing the spur, in his wanderings confuses 
the uncertain traces of his flight and the intricate paths. He 

1 Beyond the vales of Hercules) ver. 1. This was the valley that lay 
between Mounts Ossa and Olympus, through which the Peneus running, 
discharges itself into the Thermaic Gulf, not far from Thermopylae. See 
B. vi. 1. 345-8, and the Note to the passage. 

4 Of tlie Hcemonian wood) ver. 2. These were ihe woods that lay at the 
foot of Mount Ossa, in the vicinity of Lake Nassonis. 



294 PHABSALIA. [B. vm. 5-25. 

starts with fear at the sound of the groves moved by the 
winds ; and that of his own attendants, which reaches 
him from behind, startles him, fearful and afraid that the 
enemy is at his side. Although fallen from" his lofty summit, 
he knows that not yet is the price of his blood valueless, 
and, mindful of his destiny, he believes that ' he himself 
still possesses a life of value as great as tliat which, be 
himself would give for the torn-off head ~ of Caesar. 

As he followed the desert tracks the noble features of the 
hero did not allow him to conceal his station in a safe 
retreat. Many, as they were repairing to the Pharsaliun 
camp, rumour not as yet having disclosed his downfall, were 
astounded on meeting the chieftain 3 , at the mutations of 
events 4 ; and hardly was he himself a trustworthy inform- 
ant on his own ruin. Grievous is it to Magnus, whoever is 
the witness of his woes. He would prefer to be unknown 
to all nations, and hi safety to pass through the world with 
an obscure name ; but Fortune demands from him in his 
affliction the punishment of her prolonged favours, who 
presses hard upon his adversity with the weight of a fame 
so great, and burdens him with his former lot. 

Now is he sensible that honors were . too much hastened 
for him, and he condemns the exploits in Sulla's day* of his 

1 lie lelieves that) ver. 11.. " Credit." He lelieves go only, and the Poet 
seems to imply, from his abject condition, that he is mistaken, and only flat- 
ters himself in thinking so. 

3 For the torn-off head) Ter. 12. " Avnlsti cervke." Literally, " the 
neck wrenched asunder." 

3 Astounded on meeting the chieftain) ver. 16. Eowe has the following 
Note relative to this description of the flight of Pompey : " This is one of 
the passages which, if Lucan had lived to give the last hand to this work, I 
cannot but think he would have altered. The fear that he gives to Pompey 
on occasion of his flight, is very unlike the character he himself, or indeed 
any writer, has given him. It is something the more remarkable, from a 
passage in the latter end of the foregoing Book, where he is said to leave the 
battle with great bravery and constancy of mind. Thotigh it is very judi- 
ciously observed, on comparing the passage and this together, by Martin 
Lasso de Oropesa, the Spanish Translator, that the desire of seeing his wife, 
which was the occasion of his resolution to leave the field, and survive such 
a loss as that battle was, in the Seventh Book, might in this place likewise 
be the reason for the fear and anxiety which he showed in his flight." 

4 At the mutations of events) ver. 16. " Vertigine rerum ; " a strong ex- 
pression, signifying " the sudden revolution " of his fortunes. 

* Condemns the exploitt in Sulla's day) ver. 25. He probably alludes 



B. viii. 25-43.] .PHARSALIA. 295 

laurel-crowned youth. Now hurled down it grieves him 
.to recollect both the Corycian fleets 1 and the Pontic 
standards a . Thus does an age too lengthened destroy 
great spirits, and a life that survives empire. Unless the 
last day comes with the end of our blessings, and antici- 
.pates sorrows by a speedy death, fortune is the prelude to 
disgrace. Does any one dare to surrender himself to a 
prosperous lot, except on having prepared for death 3 ? 

He had reached the shore 4 , through which the river 
Peneus, now red with the Emathian carnage, discharged 
itself into the sea. From there a bark, unsuited for the 
wind and waves, hardly safe on the shallows of a river, 
bore him, in trepidation, upon the deep. He, with whose 
oars even yet Corcyra shakes 3 , and the Leucadian bays, 
the master of the Cilicians and of the Liburnian land, 
stole away, a timid passenger, in a little boat. Partner of 
his cares, thou didst bid him turn his sails towards the 
secret shores of Lesbos ! hi which land at that time thou 
didst lie concealed, Cornelia, more sad than if thou wast 
standing hi the midst of the plains of Emathia. Pre- 

to the triumph of Pompey over Hiarbas, king of Numidia, which, contrary 
to the wishes of Sulla, he gained when only in his twenty-fifth year. The 
Poet is guilty of an error in the Seventh Book, 1. 14, where he mentions the 
triumph over Sertorius as the first of Pompey 's triumphs. 

1 Both the Corycian fleets) ver. 26. He alludes to Pompey's victories 
over the Cilician pirates. The Corycus here named was a city of Cilicia 
Aspera, with a capacious harbour, between the mouths of the Lamus and the 
Calycadnus. Near it was the Corycian cave mentioned B. iii. 1. 226. 

2 And the Pontic standards) ver. 26. The victories which he gained 
over Mithridates, king of Pontus, are those here alluded to. 

3 Except on having prepared for death) ver. 32. " Who can presume to 
look for prosperity, unless he is ready to meet death in case of failure?" 
Weise, however, thinks that by " secundis fatis," a second destiny, or 
" adversity," is meant. The passage is obscure, and the Commentators are 

.by no means agreed upon its meaning. 

* He had reached the shore) ver. 33. We learn from Appian that on 
reaching the sea-shore Pompey lodged that night in the cottage of a fisher- 
man ; in the morning he embarked in a little boat, in which he coasted along 
till he met with a ship of greater burden, of which an officer named Petilius 
was captain, who, recognizing Pompey, took him on board, and conveyed 
him to Lesbos. Plutarch gives a similar account. 

5 Even yet Corcyra shakes) ver. 37. He whose fleet was then master 
of Corcyra, the Leucadian coast, the Cilicians, and the Liburninus, some of 
the most skilful among the naval powers, was at that moment obliged to take 
refuge iii a little boat. ^ 



296 PHARSALIA. [a VHL 43-65. 

sages arouse sad anxieties ; thy slumber is convulsed by 
trembling fears ; Thessaly does each night present ; and, 
the shades departed, thou dost run along the crags of steep 
rocks and the verge of the shore, looking out upon the 
waves; fluttering afar thou art always the first to behold 
the sails of the approaching ship, nor dost thou venture to 
make any enquiries about thy husband's fate. 

Lo ! a bark, which spreads its canvas ' towards your 
harbours ! what it is bringing thou knowest not ; and now, 
the sum of thy fears, a sad messenger of arms is come, and 
ill-boding report. Thy vanquished husband is come. Why 
dost thou lose the moments for grief ? When now thou 
couldst be weeping, thou art stricken with fear. Then, the 
ship drawing nigh, she leaps forward, and marks the cruel 
judgment of the Gods, the chieftain disfigured with pale- 
ness, and having his countenance overhung with white 
hairs, and his garments squalid with black dust. Darkness 
coming over her, afflicted, with its shades, takes away the 
heavens and the light, and grief besets her soul; all her 
limbs, forsaken by their smews, totter; her heart grows 
contracted, and long does she lie deceived with the hope 
of death. 

Now, the cable fastened to the shore, Pompey surveys the 
vacant sands. After the faithful handmaids behold him close 
at hand, no further than silent sighs do they allow them- 

1 Which spreads its canvas) ver. 50. Pompey 's movements, after he had 
left the field of Pharsalia, are thus described by Caesar, in the Civil War, 
B. iii. c. 102 : " A proclamation was issued by Pompey at Amphipolis, that 
all the young men of that province, Grecians and Roman citizens, should 
take the military oath ; but whether h( issued it with an intention of pre- 
venting suspicion, and to conceal as long as possible his design of fleeing 
thither, or to endeavour to keep possession of Macedonia by new levies, if 
nobody pursued him, it is impossible to judge. He lay at anchor one night, 
and calling together his friends at Amphipolis, and collecting a sum of money 
for his necessary expenses, upon advice of Caesar's approach, set sail from 
that place, and in a few days arrived at Mitylene. Here he was detained 
two days, and having added a few galleys to his fleet, he went to Cilicia, 
and thence to Cyprus. There he was informed, that by consent of all the 
inhabitants of Antioch and the Roman citizens who traded there, the castle had 
been seized in order to shut him out of the town ; and that messengers had 
been dispatched to all those who were reported to have taken refuge in 
the neighbouring states, that they should not come to Antioch: that if 
they did, it would be attended with imminent danger to their lives." 



B. vni. 65-91.] PHARSALIA. 297 

selves with which to rebuke the Fates, and in vain do they 
attempt to raise their lifeless mistress from the ground; 
whom Magnus clasps to his breast, and with his embraces 
warms her enervated limbs. The blood now recalled to the 
surface of her body, she had begun to feel the hands of 
Pompey, and to be able to meet the sad looks of her hus- 
band; Magnus forbids her to yield to fate, and with his 
voice reproves her immoderate grief : 

" Why, at the first wound of Fortune, dost thou fail in thy 
high-born courage, woman, rendered illustrious by the titles 
of ancestors so great l ? Thou hast a road to a fame destined 
to endure for ages. In this sex of thine the sole ground for 
praise is not the enactment of laws, nor yet arms, but an 
unfortunate husband. Elevate thy mind, and let thy duty- 
struggle with destiny, and love myself because I have been 
conquered. Now am I a still greater glory to thee, because 
the emblems of state 2 , and because the virtuous throng of 
Senators, and troops so vast of Kings, have departed from 
me. Begin to be the only one to follow Magnus. Misplaced 
the grief, which, while thy husband survives, is extreme, 
and forbidden is it to increase. It ought to be thy last 
token of fidelity to mourn for thy husband. In my warfare 
thou hast borne no losses. After the battles Magnus still 
lives, but his fortunes have perished ; that which thou dost 
bewail, that alone hast thou loved." 

Kebuked by these words of her husband, with diffi- 
culty she raised her weak limbs from the ground, Avith 
lamentations breaking forth into such complaints : 

" O would that I had entered the marriage bed of hated 
Caesar, an unhappy wife, and joyous in no husband 3 ! Twice 
have I proved injurious to the world ; Erinnys has conducted 
me as my bridal attendant 4 , and the shades of the Crassi ; 

1 By the titles of ancestors so great] ver. 73. He alludes to her descent 
from the family of the Scipios. 

8 The emblems of state) ver. 79. " Fasces ; " literally, " the fasces," the 
emblems of the Consular dignity. 

J Joyous in no husband) ver. 89. Neither in her first husband, P. Crassus, 
the son of M. Crassus the Triumvir, both of whom were slain in the Parthian 
war, nor yet in the unfortunate Pompey, her second husband. 

4 Erinnys has conducted me as my bridal attendant) ver. 90. Erinnys, or 
one of the Furies, being " Pronuba," would be inauspiciously occupying the 
place of Juno " Pronuba." The "pronubae" were also tfce women who directed 



298 .PHABSALIA. [B. vin. &1-118. 

and devoted to those ghosts I have borne the disasters of 
Assyria 1 to the civil warfare, and have hurled nations head- 
long, and have scared all the Gods from the better cause. 
O most famous husband, O thou, unworthy of my marriage 
bed, had Fortune this control over a head so mighty ? Why 
impiously did I marry thee, if I was doomed to make thee 
v retched? Now take revenge, but such as I shall willingly 
submit to. In order that the ocean may be more propitious 
to thee, the fidelity of kings assured, and the whole world 
more hospitable, hurl me, thy partner, into the sea. More 
do I wish that I had laid down this life for the fortune of 
arms ; now at last, Magnus, expiate thy overthrow. "Wherever 
ruthless Julia, thou dost lie, having by civil strife taken 
vengeance upon my nuptials, do thou come hither and 
exact the penalty, and appeased, thy rival slain 2 , spare thy 
Magnus." Thus having said, and again sinking into the 
bosom of her husband, she melts the eyes of all to tears. 
The heart of stern Magnus relents, and eyes that were dry 
in Thessaly does Lesbos fill. 

Then does the multitude of Mitylene 3 upon the thronged 
shore thus address Magnus : 

" If it shall always prove to us the greatest glory to have 
preserved the precious pledge of a husband so mighty, do 
thou, as well, we entreat, deign to grace for even one night 
the walls devoted to thee by a sacred treaty, and our house- 
hold Gods thy allies ; make this, Magnus, a place which all 
ages shall revisit, which the Roman stranger on coming shall 
venerate. By thee vanquished, no walls ought hi preference 
to be entered. All places are able to hope for the favour of 
the conqueror; this has already committed a crime. And 

the marriage ceremony on the part of the bride, or " the bridewomen." Ovid 
has a similar passage to this in the Epistle of Phyllis to Demophoon, in the 
Heroides, Ep. ii. ver. 117-120 : " Over that match did presiding Tisiphone 
howl, and the solitary bird uttered its mournful notes. Alecto was there, 
her hair wreathed with short serpents, and the light waa waved with the 
eepulchral torch." 

1 Borne the disasters of Assyria) ver. 92. Disasters such as the Romans 
had suffered in their campaigns against the Parthians, the inhabitants of 
ancient Assyria. 

a Appeased, thy rival *Zat) ver. 104. " Pellice." "Pellex" is here 
used in the same sense as in B. iii. L 23. See the Note to the passage. 

3 Tkt rn.uU.Uude of Mitylene) ver. 109. See B. v. 1. 786, and the Note 
to the passage. 



.B. viii. 118-148.] PHARSALIA. 299 

what if this lies, an island, on the sea ? Caesar is in want 
of ships. A great part of thy nohles will collect here, as- 
sured of thy locality. Upon a known shore must the war 
,be renewed. Take the wealth of the Temples and the gold 
of the Gods ; if these youths are better suited for the land, 
.if for ships, take them ; make use of all Lesbos, so far as it 
is of service. Take them; lest Caesar should seize them, 
do thou, vanquished, accept them. This charge alone do 
thou remove from a land that deserves well of thee, that thou 
mayst not appeal* both to have obtained our alliance when 
fortunate, and to have repudiated it when unsuccessful." 

Glad in his adversity at such affection in these men, and 
rejoicing for the sake of the world that fidelity still exists, 
he says : 

, " That there is no land 1 in all the world more dear to me, 
I have shown to you by no slight pledge. By this hostage 
did Lesbos retain my affection ; here was my hallowed home 
and my dear household Gods, here was Home to me. To no 
shores in my flight have I before this turned my ship, as 
I knew that Lesbos had already earned the wrath of Caesar, 
my wife being sheltered there, not having feared to entrust 
to you so great a ground for pardon 2 . But now, sufficient 
is it to have rendered you guilty; over the whole world 
my destinies must be pursued by me. Alas! too happy 
Lesbos, with everlasting fame, whether thou dost teach 
nations and kings to receive Magnus, or whether thou alone 
(dost show fidelity to me. For I am resolved to seek hi 
what lands there is righteousness, and where is guilt. Be- 
-ceive, O Deity, if still thou art in any degree favourable to 
. me, the extreme of my prayers : grant me nations like to 
Lesbos who will not forbid me, subdued in war, Caesar my 
foe, to enter then 1 harbours, nor yet to leave them." 

He spoke, and he placed his sorrowing partner on board 
the ship. You would have supposed that all were changing 

1 There is no land) ver. 129. Plutarch informs us that when the 
people of Mitylene entreated Pompey to enter their city, he declined to 
do BO, and entreated them to be of good heart, and submit to Caesar, who 
was full of goodness and clemency ; a very different account from that here 
given. 

3 So great a ground for pardon) ver. 136. He means to say that he did 
not hesitate to put himself in their power, although, by his betrayal, they 
had the opportunity of easily making their peace with^ Caesar. 



300 PHAESALIA. [B. vra. 148-171. 

their land and their paternal soil ; in such a manner did 
they lament throughout all the shore, and reproaching right 
hands were extended to the skies ; and less for Pompey, whose 
fortunes had aroused their grief, but rather for her, whom, 
throughout the whole period of the war, they had looked on 
as their own fellow-citizen, did the people lament on be- 
holding her depart ; whom hardly, if she had been repairing 
to the camp of a victorious husband, could the matrons 
have now supposed to depart with dry eyes ; with so great 
love had her virtue attached to her some, some her inte- 
grity and the mo'desty of her chaste features, inasmuch as, 
humble in the extreme, a sojourner, cause of offence to not 
one of the multitude, she lived, her fortunes still erect, just 
as though her husband had been conquered. 

Now Titan, sinking to his mid fires 1 in the sea, was 
not entire to those from whom he conceals, nor to those to 
whom, if any, he discloses his orb ; the watchful anxieties in 
Pompey 's breast now revert to the allied cities of the Roman 
confederacy and the varying dispositions of kings, now 
to the remote regions of the world beyond oppressive suns 
extending, and the south. Full oft the sad struggle of 
cares and a distrust in the future cast aside the wearying 
fluctuations of his undecided breast, and he consults the 
pilot of the ship about all the stars 2 ; in which quarter he 
marks the land a ; what is his method of dividing the sea by 
the heavens ; by means of what Constellation he makes for 
Syria, or which fire in the Wain 4 rightly points to Libya. To 

1 To Aw mid fires) ver. 159. He means that half of the orb of the 
sun was above the horizon, and half below it, so as to be seen in its en- 
tirety neither by those to whom it was setting, nor to their antipodes (if 
any), to whom it was rising. He expresses some doubt as to the antipodes, 
because it was a matter of discussion among the ancients whether they 
existed. It is clear that the Poet here alludes to the setting sun ; but Howe 
translates the passage as though describing the break of day. 

2 About all the stars) ver. 167. All this astronomical parade of the Poet 
has been generally deemed frigid, and misplaced in the extreme. 

3 In which quarter he marks the land) ver. 168-9. He enquires how, by 
means of observing the stars, he traverses the sea, and what stars he watches 
in steering for Syria. 

4 Which fire in the Wain) ver. 170. " Which star in the Constellation of 
the Greater Bear is observed in steering for the coast of Africa." This Con- 
stellation was called " plaustrum," from its fancied resemblance to a waggon 
and a team of horses. By us it is sometimes called Charles's Wain. 



B. vni. 171-192.] PHAKSALIA. 301 

these words the skilled observer of the silent heavens 1 
makes answer: 

" The Constellations which fleet on in the star-bearing sky, 
deceiving wretched mariners, the heavens never standing 
still, we do not follow ; but that pole which never sets, most 
bright with the twofold Arcti 2 , guides the ships. Here, al- 
ways when the Lesser Bear rises vertically 3 before me and 
stands over the summit of the ropes of the mainmast yards 4 
then do we look towards the Bosporus and the sea that winds 
along the shores of Scythia. Is Arctophylax descending 5 
at all from the summit of the mast, and is the Cynosure 
brought nearer to the sea, then is the bark making to- 
wards the harbours of Syria. Then does Canopus receive 
us 6 , a star content to wander in the southern sky, dreading 
Boreas : speed onward with it also to the left, beyond Pha- 
ros, the bark in the mid sea will touch the Syrtes. But 
in what direction dost thou command the sails to be set, 
in what the canvas to be now spread with the sheet ? " 

To him, on the other hand, with doubting breast Mag- 
nus answered: "Observe this alone throughout the 
whole ocean, that thy bark is always afar from the Ema- 
thian shores, and leave Hesperia to the sea and sky ; leave 
the rest to the winds. My partner and deposited pledge 
have I regained ; then was I assured what shores I desired ; 
now Fortune will provide a harbour." 

1 Observer oftJie silent heavens) ver. 171. " Servator Olympi." Literally, 
" the watcher," or " keeper of Olympus " a rather periphrastic description 
of a pilot. 

2 Most bright with the twofold Arcti) ver. 175. The Greater and Lesser 
Bears, or Helice and Cynosura. 

3 The Lesser Bear rises vertically) ver. 176-7. He means that when he 
steers towards the Bosporus and the North, the Lesser Bear rises towards 
the zenith, but when he steers southwards, towards Syria, it declines. 

4 Summit of the ropes of the mainmast yards) ver. 177. " Ceruchi." It 
is not well ascertained what is the meaning of the word " ceruchus." Some 
Commentators take it to have been the extremity of the sailyard, while others 
consider it to have been the name of the rope which ran from the end of the 
sailyard to the top of the mast. 

4 Is Arctophylax descending) ver. 180. As to Arctophylax, or Bootes, 
and Cynosura, or the Lesser Bear, see B. ii. 1. 722 ; B. iii. 1. 218, and 1. 252 ; 
and B. ir. 1. 540. 

' Then does Canopus receive us) ver. 181. " After passing Syria south- 
ward, we observe Canopus, a star of the south, unknown to northern climes." 
This star was also called " Coma Berenices," or " Beenice's Hair." 



302 PHARSALIA. [B- vm. 192-209. 

Thus he speaks ; but he turns the sails hanging hi equal 
degree from the level ends of the sailyards, and guides the 
ship to the left, and that he may cleave the waves which the 
Samian rocks and which Chios renders rugged, these ropes 
he loosens at the prow, those he tightens l at the stern. 
The seas are sensible of the change, and now, the beak in 
another direction cleaving the deep, and the bark not look- 
ing the same way, they change their sound. Not so dexter- 
ously does the guide of the horses, when he sweeps round 
the left end of the axle 2 with the right-hand wheel, force the 
chariot to keep close to the turning-place untouched 3 . 

Titan has now disclosed the earth and concealed the 
stars. Each one dispersed by the Emathian storms, follows 
after Magnus 4 , and first from the shores of Lesbos his son 
comes to meet him s , and then a faithful band of nobles. 
For not from Magnus when hurled down by the Fates 
and worsted in fight, has Fortune taken kings as his attend- 

1 Loosens at the prow, those he tightens) ver. 196. Weise seems to under- 
stand " dedit " and " tenet " as meaning the same thing ; that lie draws 
tight the sailyards both at stem and stern ; which, however, seems not to be 
the case. The meaning apparently is, that he loosens or lets out the ropes 
at the prow, and tightens them at the stern, for the purpose of running in 
a south-easterly course, his object being to open out one angle of the sail 
(these being generally three-cornered), and to draw in the others." See the 
description in B. v. 1. 428, et seq. 

2 Sweeps round the left end of the axle) ver. 200. " Dexteriore rota 
laevum quum circuit axem." When turning sharply round the turning-place 
the outer or right-hand wheel takes a circuit round the other end of the 
axle-tree, the inner or left-hand wheel standing almost still. 

8 Close to the turning-place iintotiched) ver. 201. Among the Unmans, 
the chariot-race consisted of seven circuits of the " spina," or wall in the 
midst of the Circus, at each end of which was the "meta" or " goal," or rather, 
" turning-place." Of course it was the object of the charioteers to save as 
much space as possible, by getting the inside place and turning close to the 
" meta," without touching it. 

4 Follows after Magnus) ver. 204. Those who have escaped the Thessa- 
lian catastrophe, on learning the direction in which Pompey has sailed, hasten 
to follow him. 

5 His son comes to meet him) ver. 204. This was Sextus, his younger 
son, who had been in Lesbos during the Pharsalian campaign, at the time 
when, in his fervent imagination, the Poet represents him as consulting the 
Thessalian enchantress. He was probably in another part of the island 
during his father's short stay there. This is the more probable as his mother 
Miicia having been Pompey's divorced wife, he may not have felt any 
regard or sympathy for Cornefin, who was then at Mitylene. 



B. TUT. 209-229.] PHAKSALIA. 303 

ants ; an exile, he has the rulers of the earth and those who 
wield the sceptres of the East as his companions. He 
bids Deiotarus l , who follows the flying track of his leader, 
go to the remote regions of the world. 

" Since," says he, " most faithful of kings, the earth, 
wherever it is lloman, has been lost by the Emathian defeat, 
it remains for us to try the fidelity of the East, and the 
nations that drink of Euphrates, and Tigris still safe from 
Csesar. Object not, seeking the destinies of Magnus, to 
penetrate to the remote abodes of the Medians and the 
Scythian retreats, and to change the entire clime, and to 
carry my words to the proud descendant of Arsaces 2 . 

" If your ancient treaties with me are still in force, sworn 
unto me by the Thunderer of Latium, ratified by your ma- 
gicians 3 , fill your quivers, and stretch the Armenian bows 
with Getan strings ; if, you, O Parthians, when I sought 
the Caspian strongholds, and pursued the hardy Alani 4 with 
their eternal wars, permitting you to range at large in the 
Achsemenian plains 5 , I never drove trembling in flight to 
well-defended Babylon. Beyond the realms of Cyrus, and 
the confines of the Chaldsean sway, where the rapid 
Ganges and where the Nysaean Hydaspes 6 approach the 
sea, nearer was I then to the fires of rising Phoebus than 

1 He lids Deiotarus) ver. 210. See B. v. 1. 55, and the Note to the 
passage. Deiotarus had made his escape from the coast of Thessaly in the 
same ship with Pompey. 

2 Proud descendant of Arsaces) ver. 218. The royal family of Partliia 
were descended from Arsaces; see B. i. 1. 108. 

3 Ratified by your magicians) ver. 220. He means " confirmed and 
ratified by the Chaldaean priesthood," who also aspired to the credit of 
being deemed magicians. 

* Pursued the hardy Alani) ver. 223. The Alani were a warlike people 
of Asia, included under the general name of Scythians, but probably a 
branch of the Massagetse. They excelled in horsemanship, and at the time 
when Lucan wrote were probably dwelling to the east of the Caucasus. 
They finally became absorbed with the Hnns and the Vandals. 

* In the Achcemenian plains) ver. 224. See B. ii. 1. 49, and the Note to 
the passage. 

6 The Nysccan Hydaspes) ver. 227. The name Nysa was given to several 
places which, for various reasons, were held sacred to Bacchus. The Indian 
Nysa, which is here alluded to, was in the country of Goryaea, the Punjaub 
of the present day. It was situate at the confluence of the rivers Cophen 
and Choaspes, and was probably the same place as Dionysopolis, or Nagara, 
the Kaggar of the present day. < 



304 PHARSALIA. [u. vm. 229-243. 

Persia was; still, subduing all places, I endured that 
yourselves alone * should be wanting to my triumphs ; 
and alone in the number of kings of Eastern lands does 
the Parthian approach me on equal terms. Nor once 
do the descendants of Arsaces stand saved by the favour 
of Magnus. For. who was it that, after the wounds of the 
Assyrian slaughter, restrained the just wrath of Latium * ? 
Bound by so many obligations to me, now let Parthia, 
the limits burst open 3 , pass beyond the banks forbidden 
for ages, and the Zeugma of him of Pella 4 . Conquer 
for Pompey, ye Parthians ; Rome will be ready to be con- 
quered.'" 

The King does not hesitate to obey him commanding 
an enterprise so difficult; and, the insignia of the palace 
laid aside 5 , he goes forth, clad in the assumed garb of a 
menial. In doubtful enterprises it is safe for the monarch 
to counterfeit the needy man. How much more securely, 
then, does the man who is truly poor pass his life than the 
rulers of the world ! The king having been dismissed upon 

1 / endured that yourselves alone) ver. 230. If we may judge from the 
circumstances of the utter overthrow of the army of the Crassi, Pompey, in 
not following up the war with the Parthians and finally triumphing over 
them, made a virtue of necessity. 

2 Restrained iliejust wrath, of Latium) ver. 234. See B. i. 1. 104. After 
the defeat of the Crassi, Pompey dissuaded the Senate from continuing the 
Parthian warfare while they were engaged in the Gallic war. 

3 The limits burst open) ver. 236. This passage has been generally thought 
to refer to the boundaries of the Parthian Empire (which were considered to 
be the line of the Euphrates), agreed upon between Pompey and King 
Phraates. But, unless we agree with Burmann that " per saecula " here 
means " for future ages," having a prospective signification, that cannot be 
the meaning of the passage, as the treaty had been only recently made, 
and we must adopt the suggestion of one of the Scholiasts, that the 
Euphrates is alluded to as the boundary assigned, together with the city of 
Zeugma, by Alexander the Great, to the Parthian Empire. 

4 The Zeugma of him of Pella) ver. 237. Zeugma was a city built, 
according to some, by Alexander the Great, which opinion Lucan seems to 
adopt, from his using the epithet " Pellaeus." Its foundation is, however, 
more generally attributed to Scleucus Nicator ; it was situate on the western 
bank of the Euphrates, where a bridge of boats had been constructed by 
Alexander, from which it received its name, a Greek word signifying " the 
junction." Pella in Macedon, as already remarked, was the birthplace of 
Alexander the Great. 

5 The insignia of the palace laid aside) ver. 239. He lays aside the 
robes of a monarch, and, disguising himself, assumes the dress of a servant. 



B. viii. 243-252.] PHARSALIA. 305 

the shore, he himself amid the rocks of Icaria 1 , leaving behind 
both Ephesus, and Colophon 2 with its tranquil seas, skims 
past the foaming rocks of little Samos 3 ; the floating breeze 
blows off from the shores of Cos 4 ; next does he fly past 
Cnidos 5 and leave Khodes behind, made illustrious by the 
sun , and by the mid-sea 7 he cuts short the great bays of the 
Telmessian waves 8 . 

The Pamphylian land presents itself to the ship ; and 
not as yet venturing to entrust himself to any walls, to 
thee, li ttle Phaselis 9 , does Magnus first repair. For thee 

1 Amid the rocks of Icaria) ver. 244. Icaria, now called Nicaria, is an 
island of the JEgean Sea, one of the Sporades, and west of Samos. It was 
also called Doliche, " the Long Island." It was famed for its rich pastures, 
and received its name from the adjacent Icarian Sea, which was so called 
from the fabled fall there of Icarus, the son of Daedalus, when flying with 
his father from Crete. 

2 Both Ephesus, and Colophon) ver. 245. Colophon, like Ephesus, was 
one of the twelve Ionian cities of Asia Minor, and stood on the sea-coast, at 
the mouth of the river Halesus. It claimed to be the birth-place of Homer. 
A small village now stands on its site. 

3 The foaming rocks of little Samos) ver. 246. Samos, now called Samo 
by the Greeks, was one of the principal islands in the JEgean Sea. It lies 
off the coast of Ancient Ionia, from which it is only separated by a narrow 
strait. It was famed for its architecture, painting, and pottery. " Pythagoras 
was a native of this island. 

4 From the shores of Cos) ver. 246. Cos, now called Stance, was one of 
the Sporades, lying off the coast of Caria, in Asia Minor. It was the birth- 
place of the famous painter Apelles. 

4 Fly past Cnidos) ver. 247. Cnidos, or Gnidus, was a celebrated city 
of Asia Minor, on the coast of Caria. It was much resorted to by travellers, 
led thither by curiosity to behold the statue of Venus by Praxiteles, which 
stood in her Temple there. 

6 Rhodes behind, made illustrioris by the sun) ver. 247-8. See B. v. 
1. 50, and the Note to the passage. 

7 By the mid-sea) ver. 249. " Compensat medio pelago." He probably 
means by this expression that Pompey did not coast along the Telmessian 
Gulf, but stood out to sea straight in his course from point to point, at the 
extremities of the bay. 

8 Of the Telmessian waves) ver. 248. There were two cities of the name 
of Telmessus. The one here referred to was a city of Lycia, near the 
borders of Caria, on a gulf called Telmessicus Sinus, and close to the Pro- 
montory Telmessis. 

9 Little Phaselis) ver. 251. Phaselis was a seaport of Lycia, near the 
borders of Pamphylia, on the Pamphylian Gulf. It was at one period a 
pliice of considerable importance, and, having the command of three harbours, 
enjoyed an extensive commerce. Becoming the head-quarters of the pirates 

X 



806 PHABSALIA. [B. VIIL 252-269. 

thy scanty inhabitants forbid to be distrusted, and thy 
homes exhausted of their people ; and greater is the mul- 
titude in the ship than thine. Hence, again spreading the 
canvas, now he beholds Taurus, and Dipsus, that flows 
down from Taurus 1 . 

Could Magnus have believed this 2 , that -when he gave 
peace to the waves provision was made for himself as well ? 
Safe, in his little bark he flies along the shores of the Cili- 
cians. A great part of the Senate, collected, overtakes the 
flying chieftain ; and at little Celendra3 :t , at which port Se- 
linus both sends forth and receives its ships, in an assembly 
of the nobles, at length does Magnus open his sorrowing 
lips, in these words : 

" Companions hi the war and in my flight, and dear as 
my native land, although on a naked shore, in the region 
of the Cilicians, and surrounded by no arms, I take counsel, 
and consider of a commencement for a new career, still, do 
you bring courageous spirits. Not utterly have I fallen on 
the fields of Emathia, nor so far are my destinies depressed 
that .1. am not able to raise my head again, and shake off 
'the reverse I have sustained. Were the ruins of Libya able 

who infested the coasts of Asia Minor, it was destroyed by P. Servilius Isau- 
ricus. It was rebuilt, but never recovered its former importance, or, perhaps, 
magnitude ; and this is probably the reason which prompts the Poet to 
tyle it " parva," "little." It is not improbable that the inhabitants were 
forbidden by the Romans to surround it with walls. It is said by some that 
the light vessels, called " phaseli," were first built here. According to Plu- 
tarch, Attalia was the first place in Ask Minor at which Fompey touched. 
The Poet, perhaps, means in 1. 253, that the inhabitants of this place had all 
deserted it for the standards of Pompey. 

.' ? DipstiSf.lJtal flow* down from Taurus) ver. 255. Under the name 
" Dipsus," or " Dipsas," Burmann thinks that the river Catarrhactei is 
alluded to. This is a river of ancient Pamphylia, which descends from the 
mountain chain of Taurus, in a vast broken waterfall, whence it received its 
name. After flowing beneath the earth in a portion of its coarse, it falls 
into the sea to the east of Attalia. 

* Could Magnus hate believed this) ver. 256. " Could Pompey have fore- 
seen, at the time when he defeated the Cilician pirates, and made the southern 
coasts of Asia Minor secure from piracy, that he should one day as a fugitive 
have to seek a refuge there!" 

3 And at little Celendra) ver. 259. Celendrae was a town founded by 
the Saraians in Cilicia. It had a harbour of the same name at the month of 
the river Selinus, and was probably the same place as Syedra, or Syedrae, 
which indeed, in some of the Editions, is the reading here. 



TJ. vnr. 269-287.] THAKSALIA. 307 

to elevate Marius 1 to the Consular dignity 2 and restore him 
to the filled annals ''\ and me shall Fortune keep depressed 
by a lighter hand ? A thousand ships of mine * are tossed 
upon the Grecian seas, a thousand captains ; rather does 
Pharsalia disperse our resources, than subvert them. 

" But me even the fame alone of my exploits is able to 
protect, which throughout the whole earth I have achieved, 
and a name which the world loves. Do you weigh these 
realms 5 , both as to their strength and their fidelity Libya, 
and the Parthians, and Pharos which of them ought to 
succour the Roman state. But I, nobles, will disclose the 
secrets of my cares, and in which direction the prepon- 
derance of my thoughts inclines. The age of the monarch 
of the Nile is suspected by me, because strict fidelity de- 
mands ripened years. On the other hand the two-faced 
subtlety of the doubtful Moor alarms me ; for, mindful 
:of his race, the ruthless descendant of Carthage 7 longs for 
Hesperia, and much of Hannibal is hi his fickle breast. 
He who defiles his kingdom with collateral blood 8 , and 

1 Able to elevate Marius) ver. 269. See B. ii. 1. 89, and the Note. He 
alludes to the downfall of Marius, and his being found sitting amid the ruins 
of Carthage, after which, with the aid of China, he regained his lost position, 
and entered Rome once more as. a conqueror. * 

2 To the Consular dignity) ver. 270. " In fasces ; " literally, " to the 
fasces." 

3 To tfie filled .annals) ver. 270. In allusion to the " Fasti Consu- 
lares," in which Marius appeared as Consul seven times, a number never 

before equalled by any person. 

4 A thousand ships of mine) ver. 272. His large fleet was at this time 
in the Adriatic Sea, and the neighbourhood of Corcyra. 

5 Do you weigh these realmt) ver. 276. " Take into consideration the 
comparative resources and fidelity of Juba, king of Numidia, Phraates, king 
'of Parthia, and Ptolemy, king of Egypt, who are all allies of the Roman 
people, of which you are the representatives." 

6 The age of tiie monarch of tlie Nile) ver. 281. This was Ptolemy XII., 
king of Egypt, who was but thirteen years of age at this period ; on account 
of which Pompey doubts whether he will have sufficient strength of mind 
to adhere with fidelity to his allies. The result proved how well founded 
were these doubts. 

7 The ruthless descendant of CartlMge) ver. 284. One of the Scholiasts 
asserts that Juba was descended from a sister of Hannibal. 

* Defiles his kingdom with collateral blood) ver. 286. It has been suggested 
that by the words " obliquo sanguine" he hints that Juba is of illegitimate 
' birth. But it is much more probable that, by it he intends to denote the kind 
of relationship which existed between Hannibal ana Juba ; probably mean* 

x 2 



308 PHARSALIA. [B. vni. 287-303. 

reaches up to Numidion forefathers, has now become puffed 
up with pride, on Varus being a suppliant 1 , and has looked 
upon the destinies of Rome in a secondary rank. 

" Come, then, my companions, let us hasten to the 
Eastern climes. Euphrates with his tide divides the vast 
earth, and the Caspian strongholds set apart boundless re- 
treats, and another pole measures the Assyrian nights and 
days, and a sea of different colour 2 in its waves is severed 
from ours, and an ocean their own. Their sole desire is 
rule 1 . More lofty is the war-horse in the plains, and 
more strong their bow ; neither boy nor aged man is slow 
to stretch the deadly string, and from no arrow is death 
matter of uncertainty. They were the first with the bow 
to repulse the lances of Pella 4 ; and Bactria, the abode 5 of 
the Medians, and Babylon, proud of its walls 6 , the home 
of the Assyrians. 

" Nor yet are our javelins much feared by the Parthians ; 
and they dare to engage in war, having made trial of the 
Scythian arrows, when Crassus died. Nor do they scatter 

ing, that though not lineally they were collaterally related. Oudendorp 
thinks that Hannibal may have descended from a daughter or sister of one 
of the former kings of Numidin, and thus through his maternal ancestors 
have been relied to the forefathers of Juba. 

1 Varus leing a suppliant) ver. 287. He thinks that he may have be- 
come overweening and arrogant, on seeing Varus appealing to him for assist- 
ance, and then having conquered Curio and his troops. See B. iv. 1. 668- 
715, et seq. 

1 A sea of different colour) ver. 293. No doubt he here alludes to the 
Bed Sea. 

3 Their sole desire w rule) ver. 294. " They are not greedy for wealth, 
and therefore will not be traitors to us ; while their love of conquest will aid 
our cause." 

4 The lances of Pella) ver. 298. ." Sarissas." The " sarissa" is supposed 
to have been a kind of pike with which the soldiers of the Macedonian pha- 
lanx were armed. Their ordinary length was twenty-one feet, but those used 
by the phalanx were twenty-four feet in length. As to the Eastern expedi- 
tion of Alexander the Great, here alluded to, see B. iii. 1. 233. 

4 And Bactria, the abode) ver. 299. Bactria was a province occupying 
pretty nearly that part of Asia now called Bokhara. It was inhabited by 
a rude and warlike race, who were subjugated by either Cyrus or one of the 
later Medo- Persian kings, who are here spoken of as " Aledi." It afterwards 
formed the Greek kingdom of Bactria, which was ultimately subdued by the 
Parthians. 

6 Proud of its walls) ver. 299. See B. vi. 1. 50, and the Note to the 
passage. 



B. Tin. 303-331.] PHARSALIA. 309 

darts that trust in iron alone, but the whizzing shafts are 
steeped in plenteous venom. Small wounds are fatal, and 
there is death in the blood on the surface of the skin. Oh ! 
would that I had not dependence so great upon the ruthless 
descendants of Arsaces ! Destinies too strongly rivalling 
our own destinies influence the Medians, and greatly do 
Hie Gods favour the race 1 . 

" Nations will I pour forth summoned from other lands ; 
and the East will I send against him, awakened from its 
retreats. But if Eastern faith and barbarian confede- 
racies betray us, let Fortune bear our wreck beyond the 
intercourse of the ordinary world. I will not go suing to 
realms which I have created ; but I shall enjoy a great 
solace in my death, as I lie in another clime, that nothing to 
these limbs my father-in-law has done with bloody, nothing 
with pious intent. But revolving all the destinies of my 
life, always was I venerated in that part of the world. Be- 
yond Mceotis how mighty 2 ! How mighty at Tanais, in the 
sight of the whole East! Into what lands did my name 
make its way with deeds more glorious, or whence with 
greater triumphs did it return ? 

" Rome, favour my purpose ; for what could Jhe Gods of 
heaven ever grant to thee more welcome than for thee to 
wage the civil war with Parthian troops, and to overthrow a 
nation so mighty, and to confound it with our woes ? When 
the arms of Caesar shall engage with the Medians, it follows 
that Fortune must avenge either me or the Crassi." 

Thus having said, he perceives by the murmurs that 
the men disapprove of his plans ; all of whom Lentulus 
exceeded in his incentives to valour and in the dignity 
of his grief, and uttered words worthy of one so late a 
Consul : 

" Have the Thessalian reverses so far impaired thy mind ? 

1 Greatly do Hie Gods favour the race) ver. 308. " Multumqne in gente 
Deorum est;" literally, "and much of the Gods is in the race ;" meaning 
that they were clearly highly favoured by the Gods. One of the Scholiasts 
thinks that it means that " the Chaldaeans worship many Gods," which, how- 
ever, would be a very frigid translation of the passage. 

2 Beyond Mceotis how mighty) ver. 319. Alluding to his victories over 
Tigranes and Mithridates, he supposes the fame of them to have extended 
beyond the "palus Mseotis" or " sea of Azof," aift the river " Tanais" or 
" Don." " Lis datur." 



810 PHARSALIA. [a vin. 332-350. 

Has a single day sealed the destinies of the world ? Is 
a contest so mighty decided 1 by Emathia? Does all aid 
lie prostrate for this blood-stained wound? Has Fortune 
left to thee, Magnus, the feet of the Farthians alone 8 ? 
Why, flying through the world, abhorring the entire regions 
of our earth/' and our sky, dost thou seek the opposite 
poles and remote stars, about to venerate Chaldooan (luds. 
and barbarian rites 4 , a servant of the Parthians ? Why 
is the love of liberty 5 the pretext alleged for our anns? 
Why dost thou deceive the wretched world, if thou canst 
be a slave? Thee, whom he dreaded to hear of when 
ruling the Roman state, whom he beheld leading captured 
kings from the Hyrcanian woods , and from the Indian 
shores, shall he behold cast down by the Fates, humble 
and abject, and madly raise his aspirations for the Latian 
world, Pompey his suppliant, measuring himself and Pvome 
together ? 

" Thou wilt be able to say nothing worthy of thy spirit 

and thy destiny. Ignorant of converse in the Latin 

tongue, he will demand, Magnus, that thou shouldst ask 

him by tears. Are we to endure this wound on our shame, 



1 /* a contest so -mighty decided) ver. 833. " Litem dare " signified " to 
pronounce sentence," and was especially applied to the Roman Praetor 
giving judgment. The meaning is, " Is the Thessalian disaster so entirely to 
pronounce judgment upon and influence our future destinies?" 

4 L(ft to thee, Magnus, the fed of the Partfdans alone) ver. 334-5. 
"Solos tibi, Magne, reliquit Parthorum Fortuna pedes?" This has been 
generally taken to mean, "Has Fortune left it as your only resource to go and 
kiss the feet of the Parthians while imploring their aid <" and in that sense 
the Scholiasts have understood the passage. It is much more probable that 
the meaning is, " Has Fortune left it as your only resource to trust in the 
swiftness of foot of the Parthian troops?" a quality for which they were 
especially famed. 

J Tlie entire regions of our earth) ver. 336. " Terrarum;" meaning "our 
regions of the earth," in contradistinction to the distant climes of the Par- 
thians and Assyrians. See 1. 292. 

4 And barbarian rites) ver. 338. He probably alludes to the fire worship 
of the Chaldacans and Magi ; which has descended to the Parsees of the pre- 
sent day. 

4 lF7iy is the love of liberty) ver. 339. " Why pretend that love of liberty 
influences us, if it is only a desire to serve the Parthians that prompts us to 
continue the warfare?" 

' From the Hyrcanian woods) ver. 343. He says this with the licence of 
the poet, in allusion to the Parthian and Syrian campaigns of Pompey. 



B. vni. 350-362.] THARSALIA. 311 

that Parthia shall avenge the woes of Hesperia, before Rome 
does her own ? Thyself it was she chose as her chieftain 
in the civil strife. Why dost tlioxi spread our wounds 
among the Scythian tribes, and our slaughters that at present 
lie concealed? Why dost thou teach the Parthians to come 
beyond ' ? Rome loses thereby the solace of woes so great 
in bringing in no kings, but becoming the slave of her own 
citizen. 

" Does it give thee delight to go throughout the world 
leading savage nations against the walls of Rome, and fol- 
lowing standards from the Euphrates, captured with the 
Crassi*? He who alone among the kings, who, while For- 
tune concealed her preference, was wanting to Emathia 3 , 
will he now challenge the resources so mighty of him heard 
of as the conqueror, or be ready, Magnus, to unite his 
fortunes with thee ? Not this trustworthiness is there in 
the race. 

' ' Teach the Partiiians to come l/eyond) ver. 354. " Why give the Par- 
thians an excuse for passing the Euphrates, which, by the treaty made with 
yourself, is their limit?" 

Standards captured with the Cram) ver. 358. See B. i. 1. 10, and 
the Note to the passage. The standards here alluded to were eventually re- 
stored by Phraates to Augustus, on hearing that the Romans were pre- 
paring an expedition to obtain their restitution, which had been previously 
promised, by force of arms. Ovid, in the Fasti, B. v. 1. 578, et seq., has tho 
following interesting passage relative to these circumstances : " Nor is it 
enough for Mars to have but once merited this epithet of avenger; he pursues 
the standards detained in the hands of the Parthians. This was a nation 
protected both by their plains, their horses, and their arrows, and inaccessible 
from the rivers that surrounded them. The slaughter of the Crassi imparted 
daring to the nation, when soldiers, general, and standards were lost toge- 
ther. The Parthian was in possession of the Roman standards, the token of 
honor in warfare ; and an enemy was the bearer of the Roman eagle. And 
still would that disgrace have been remaining, had not the empire of Ausonia 
been protected by the valiant arms of Caesar. 'T was he that removed the 
ancient stains and the disgrace of such long duration; the standards when 
recovered recognized their friends. What then, thou Parthian, availed thee 
the arrows wont to be discharged behind thy back I What thy inaccessible 
places ? What the management of thy fleet steed ? Parthian, thou dost re- 
store the eagles. Thy conquered bows, too, thou dost extend! Now no 
pledges of our disgrace hast thou." 

3 Wat wanting to Emathia) ver. 360-61. He reminds Pompey that 
Phraates was the only monarch, in alliance with the Roman people, who did 
not send forces to Thessaly to the aid of Pompey, and suggests that his 
object was to see who would prove the victor, and aide with the strongest. 



812 PIIARSALIA. [B. VHL 363-394. 

" Every nation which is born amid the Arctoan frosts is 
unsubdued hi war and a lover of death. Whatever glides 
towards the Eastern lands and the warm regions of the 
world, the mildness of the climate makes the nations 
effeminate. There do you behold both the flowing vest- 
ments l and the loose coverings of the men. The Parthian 
amid the Median fields, upon the Sarmatian plains and the 
lands of Tigris extending with level track, is conquer- 
able by no enemy hi his powers of flight ; but where the 
earth swells he will not ascend the rugged mountain ridges ; 
nor will he wage the warfare in darkening shades, weak 
with his uncertain bow, nor by swimming cleave the current 
with its strong eddies ; nor, besprinkled in battle over all 
his limbs with blood, will he endure the summer's sun be- 
neath the heated dust. No battering-rams have they, no 
engines of war ; they are not able to fill up trenches ; and, 
the Parthian pursuing, whatever shall be able to resist the 
arrow, that same shall prove a wall -. 

" Skirmishing are their battles, and flying their fights, and 
straggling their squadrons, and more skilled are the troops 
at giving way than at repulsing. Steeped are their weapons 
with treachery, nor have they valour ever to endure the com- 
bat hand to hand, but rather to stretch the strings of their 
bows from afar, and to leave their wounds to the winds, 
wherever they choose to carry them. The sword requires 
strength, and every nation that exists of men wages the 
warfare with the sword; but the Medians the first onset 
disarms, and their emptied quivers bid them retreat. No 
confidence have they in their hands, hi poison is it all. 

" Dost thou, Magnus, deem those to be men for whom it 
is too little to come to the hazard of the battle with the 
sword? Is it so greatly worth thy while to try a disgraceful 
aid, that, separated from thy country by the whole world, thou 
mayst die ? Is barbarian earth to press upon thee ? Is a 
little and a homely tomb to cover thee, matter of envy still, 

1 Both the floicing vestments) ver. 867-8. He regards the flowing vest- 
ments, and probably the loose trowsers of the Eastern nations, as so many symp- 
toms of luxury and effeminacy. In the later times of the Empire the use 
of this kind of dress was much affected by the more fashionable Romans. 

2 That same shall prove a wall) ver. 379. Meaning that by their arrows 
alone they are formidable. 



B.VIII. 394-415;] PHARSALIA. 318 

while Crassus wants a sepulchre l . But lighter is thy lot, 
since death is the extreme punishment, and one not to be 
feared by men. 

" But Cornelia dreads not death 2 alone under a wicked 
king. Is the barbarian lust unknown to us, which blindly, 
after the manner of wild beasts, pollutes the laws and the 
compacts of the marriage tie with wives innumerable? 
The secrets, too, of the unrighteous bed lie there ex- 
posed. Amid a thousand wives, royalty, maddened with 
revelry and with wine, abhors not any intercourse 3 inter- 
dicted by the laws ; amid the embraces of women so 
many one night wearies not one man. Sisters lie hi the 
beds of brothers, the sacred ties of mothers, as well. The 
woful story among nations condemns Thebes, stained by 
CEdipus 4 , for a crime not voluntarily committed ; how often 
is the Parthian ruler, descended from Arsaces, born of blood 
thus mixed ! To him to whom it is lawful to unite with 
a parent, what can I deem to be unlawful? 'The progeny 
so illustrious of Metellus 5 will be standing, the thousandth 
wife, at a barbarian couch, although, Magnus, to no woman 
will royal lust more readily devote itself than to her when 
cruelty stimulates it, and the titles of her husbands . 

" For, in order that still more portents may delight the 
Parthian, he will know that she was the wife of Crassus 

1 Crassus wants a sepulchre) ver. 394. Plutarch informs us that the 
body of Crassus was thrown into the Euphrates. Ovid calls the Crassi 
" sepulti," or " entombed," in his Art of Love, B. i. 1. 180, when speak- 
ing of the expedition of Caius Caesar, the grandson of Augustus, against the 
Farthians. Seneca, however, and Valerius Maximus confirm the account 
given by Plutarch. 

3 But Cornelia dreads not death) ver. 397. He now speaks of the nu- 
merous wives and concubines of the Eastern kings, and suggests that if 
Pompey places himself in the power of the Parthians, Cornelia may be torn 
away from him to grace the harem of the tyrant. 

3 Ab/iors not any intercourse) ver. 402. "Concubinage with no female 
relations whatever is forbidden by the laws of the Parthians." 

4 Thebes, stained by (Edipus) ver. 407. He says that Thebes was dis- 
graced by the incest of CEdipus, who married his mother Jocasta ; though 
that was comparatively pardonable, as it happened unknowingly. 

4 The progeny so illustrious of Metellus) ver. 410. Cornelia, the wife of 
Pompey, the daughter of Metellus Scipio. 

6 And the titles of her husbands) ver. 413. He will be inflamed the more 
by remembering who her husbands were P. Crassus and Pompey, both of 
whom had fought against Parthia. 



814 PHARSALIA. [u. VIIL 415-485. 

too ; as though owed already to the Assyrian destinies, she 
is dragged along, the captive of the former overthrow 1 . Let 
the woful wound to our eastern destinies be impressed /"" 
thee,- not only to have asked aid from the ruthless king. \<m 
to have waged civil war before that thou wilt be ashamed. 
For what crime among nations of thy father-in-law and 
of thyself will be greater, than that, you engaging in arms, 
vengeance for the Crassi has been lost ? All the chieftains 
ought to have rushed to attack Bactria ; and no arms should 
have been spared, even to laying bare the northern sides of 
inn- empire to the Dacians s and the bands of the lUiinr, 
until perfidious Susa 3 , falling upon the tombs of the heroes 4 , 
and Babylon, had lain prostrate. 

" An end, Fortune, do we pray for, to the Assyrian peace ; 
and if the civil war of Thessaly has terminated, against tho 
Parthians let him, who has proved the victor, go. It is the 
only nation of the world at a triumph over whom by Caesar 
I could rejoice. Will not, when first thou shalt pass over 
the cold Araxes, the shade of the sorrowing old man 5 , 
transfixed with the Scythian arrows, utter these words to thee : 
' Dost thou, whom we hoped for as the avenger of the ashes 
of our unburied ghosts", come for treaties and for peace ?' 

1 Captive of the former overthrow) ver. 416. "As though owing to the 
fortune of war, she will be considered as a part of the spoil which fell to the 
Parthians on their victory gained at Carrhae." 

3 To the Dacians) ver. 424. He means that it is the duty of all even to 
leave the extremities of the Empire exposed to the attacks of the Dacians 
and Germans of the Rhine, in order to employ the troops in dealing vengeance 
against the perfidious Parthians. 

3 Until perfidious Susa) ver. 425. See B. ii. L 49, and the Note to the 



* Upon the tombs of the heroes) ver. 426. " Virum j " meaning those of 
the soldiers of Crassus. 

* The shade of the sorrowing old man) ver. 432. Of Crassus ; who at 
the time of his death had passed his sixtieth year. Orodes, or Arsaces XIV. r 
king of Parthia, caused melted gold to be poured in his head, which had 
been cut off, exclaiming, " Sate thyself now with that metal of which in lifer 
thou wast so greedy." 

* Ashes f>f our unburied ghosts) ver. 434. "Cinerum nudce umbrae;" 
literally "to the nnked" or "unbnried shade of my ashes," which is almost 
tantamount to a blander ; inasmuch as on the body being reduced to ashes, 
that was considered tantamount to a burial. The word "cinerum," therefore, 
must here have the more extended meaning of " bones" or " dead body." It 
was the belief that the souls of those who remained nnburied were doomed 
to wander for a hundred years on the banks of the Styz. 



B. vni. 435-451.] PHARSALIA. 315 

Then will many a memorial of the slaughter meet thee ; 
the walls which the decapitated chieftains surveyed ', where 
Euphrates overwhelmed names so mighty, and Tigris 
threw our carcases on shore, and then took them back to 
himself 2 . 

" If, Magnus, tliou art able to submit to these things, 
thou art able also to appease thy father-in-law, paramount in 
the midst of Thessaly. Why dost thou not look upon the 
Roman world ? If thou dost dread the realms situate beneath 
the south, and the faithless Juba, we repair to Pharos 3 and 
the fields of Lagus. On the one side Egypt is safe in the 
Libyan Syrtes ; then, on the other, the rapid stream dis- 
turbs the sea by its seven mouths. It is a land contented 
with its own blessings, not standing in need of merchan- 
dize or of showers 4 ; in the Nile alone is its trust. The boy 
Ptolemy wields a sceptre, Magmis, owed to thee ', entrusted 
to thy guardianship. Who should dread the mere shadow of 
a name? His age is free from guile 6 ; hope for neither jus- 

1 Decapitated chieftains surveyed) ver. 436. The word "lustrarunt" is 
capable of two significations here : " the walls which the heads of the chieftains 
purified" with their blood; or, "the walls which the heads surveyed" or 
" looked upon ;" which latter is most likely the rejxl signification. Not impro- 
bably the report was that the heads of the Crassi were exposed on the walls of 
Parthian cities ; we are informed by Plutarch that the head of the elder 
Crassus was sent by Surenas to Orodes at Seleucia, and the head of the 
younger one, who had slain himself on being unable to escape, was exultingly 
shown to his father on the end of a spear. 

2 Took them back to himself) ver. 439. He alludes to the violence of the 
Tigris in sometimes throwing the bodies ashore, and then again sweeping 
them away in its tide. The more placid nature of the tide of the Euphrates 
is well expressed by the use of the verb " obrnit." The bodies, when thrown 
there, were not carried away by the tide, but sank at once. 

3 We repair to Pharos) ver. 443. Pharos, the island at the mouth of the 
Nile, here signifies Egypt in general ; the founder of the then royal house of 
which was Ptolemy, the son of Lafna. 

4 Or of shotcert) ver. 447. " Jovis;" literally "of Jupiter;" signifying 
"rain," or portraving the vivifying principle. 

5 A sceptre, Magnus, owed to thee) ver. 448. He alludes to the fact that 
Ptolemy XL, or Auletes, after having been expelled from the Egyptian throne 
by his subjects, was reseated on his throne by A. Gabinius the Proconsul of 
Syria, who was influenced by the request of Pompey, and a bribe of ten 
thousand talents from Ptolemy. 

* His aye is free from guile) ver. 440. He alludes to the youthful age of 
the present monarch of Egypt, and considers him as holding only " the 
shadow of the title of king." 



316 PHARSALIA. [B. vni. 451-466. 

tice and honor, nor reverence for the Gods in an aged court. 
Those used to the sceptre are ashamed of nothing ; mildest 
is the lot of realms under a youthful lung." No more having 
said, he inclined their minds in that direction. How much 
freedom does the last hope of success obtain ! The opinion 
of Magnus was overruled. 

Then did they leave the territory of the Cilicians, and 
urge on their hastening barks to Cyprus, to which no altars 
has the Goddess preferred, remembering the Paphian waves 1 , 
if we are to believe that the Deities have birth, or it is right 
to suppose that any one of the Gods has had a beginning. 
When Pompey has departed from these shores, coasting 
along all the rocks of Cyprus, in which it projects towards the 
south, thence is he turned aside 2 by the obliquely-flowing 
tides of the vast ocean ; nor does he make for the mountain 
cheering at night with its light :) ; and, with struggling 
sails, with difficulty he reaches the lower shores of Egypt, 
where the largest portion of the divided Nile, the seventh 
channel, flows into the Pelusian fords 4 . 

1 Remembering Hie Paphian waves) ver. 458. According to some 
accounts Venus rose from the sea in the vicinity of Paphos. 

* Thence it he turned aside) ver. 462. He coasts along the rocky shores 
of Cyprus to the south of the island, whence he is carried along transversely 
by the tide. 

3 The mountain cheering at night with its light) ver. 463. " Nee tenuit 
erratum nocturno lumine montem." This is one of the few instances in which 
May gives a wrong translation. He renders it 

" Nor by the night's weak light could he attain 

Mount Casius." 

Whereas the Poet alludes to the high rocks of the isle of Pharos, off the 
coast of Egypt, pleasing (gratum) to sailors, as giving them timely warning 
against danger. Here was the most celebrated of the light-houses of antiquity, 
which was situate at the entrance to the port of Alexandria. It was erected 
by Sostratus of Cnidos, at the expense of Ptolemy II., or Philadelphia. It 
was of vast dimensions, square, and constructed of white stone, consisting of 
several stories, diminishing in width from below upwards. Torches or 
fires, probably in cressets or fire-pans, were kept burning during the 
night. 

4 Into the Pelusian fords) ver. 466. Pelusium, on the site of which is 
the modern Tineh, and which was also more anciently called Abaris, stood 
on the eastern side of the most easterly mouth of the Nile, about two miles 
from the sea, in the midst of marshes, from the mud (<rXo;) of which it 
received its name. It was the frontier city of Egypt towards Syria and Arabia, 
and was strongly fortified. In Liter times it was the capital of the district 
of Augustamnica. 



B. vm. 467-479.] PHARSALIA. 317 

It was the time at which the Balance poises 1 the level 
hours, but equal on not more than a single day, and then the 
decreasing light pays back to the winter nights a consolation 
for their losses in the spring. 

When he understood that the King was staying at Mount 
Casius 2 he changed his course; as yet neither was Phoebus 
gone down, nor did the sails flag*. Now with rapid speed 
along the shore the horsemen scouts 4 had filled the trem- 
bling court with the arrival of the stranger. Hardly was 
there time for counsel ; still, all the miscreants of the Pel- 
laean household 3 met together ; among whom, Achoreus ", now 
calmed by old age and more moderate through bending 
years (to him Memphis gave birth, frivolous in her rites 7 , 
the observer of the Nile 8 increasing upon the fields; he 
the worshipper of the Gods, not one Apis only had lived 9 

1 At which the Balance poises) ver. 467. The time of the Autumnal 
Equinox. 

1 Was staying at Mount Casius) ver. 470. Casius, or Casium, was a 
mountain on the coast of Egypt, east of Felusium, with a temple of Jupiter 
on the summit. At its foot stood the town of Casium. 

3 Neither was Phoelus gone down, nor did the sails flag) ver. 471. " Nee 
Phoebus adhuc, nee carbasa languent." Literally, " neither does Phoebus as 
yet, nor the sails grow weak ;" meaning, that the sun was not setting, nor the 
wind going down. 

4 Along the shore the horsemen scouts) ver. 472. All the historians agree 
that the king was informed by a deputation of Pompey's arrival, and not by 
scouts or spies, as here mentioned. 

* All the miscreants of the Pellcean household) ver. 474. " Monstra." 
All the iniquitous counsellors of 'the court of Alexandria, founded by Alex- 
ander of Pella ; the principal of whom were Pothinus the eunuch, Theodo- 
tus of Chios, the rhetorician, and Achillas an Egyptian. 

6 Among whom, Achoreus) ver. 475. Most ' probably this Achoreus is 
entirely a fictitious character. See B. x. 1. 175. 

7 Frivolous in her rites) ver. 478. He alludes to the superstitious worship 
by the Egyptians of bulls, cats, dogs, and other objects, which was especially 
cultivated at Memphis. See the story of Iphis and lanthe related in the Meta- 
morphoses of Ovid, B. ix. 1. 666, et seq., and the Notes in Bohn's Translation, 
pp. 335-6. 

8 T/te observer of the Nile) ver. 477. He alludes to the well which ex- 
isted at Memphis, connected with the river Nile, by the rise or fall of the 
waters of which the height of the waters in the river was denoted. 

9 Not one Apis only had lived) ver. 479. " Lustra suse Phoebes non unus 
vexerat Apis." He means hereby to denote the extreme old age of Acho- 
reus, during whose priesthood more than one Apis had died. " Lustra suae 
Phcebes" mean the periods allotted for the existence of the sacred bull, 
which were measured by the course of the moon. " Suae," " his own," i 
used in referente to the worship of Apis, who was supposed to be the same 



818 P-HAK&ALIA. [B. TIJI. 479-502. 

through the changes of his moon), was the -first speaker in 
the council ; and he alleged the merits and the fidelity of 
Pompey, and the sacred ties of the deceased parent 1 of 
1 'toiciny. But more skilled hi persuading the ill-disposed, 
and in understanding tyrants, Pothinus, presuming to con- 
demn Pompey to death, thus said : 

" Justice and right, Ptolemy, have rendered many a one 
guilty-. Fidelity, bepraised as it is, pays the penalty uli.-n 
it upholds those whom Fortune depresses. Concur with 
the Fates and the Gods, and pay court to the fortunate ; fly 
from the wretched. As different as are the stars from the 
earth, as the flames from the sea, so is the profitable from 
the right. The entire power of sceptres perishes if it begins 
to weigh what is just ; and regard for what is honorable over- 
throws citadels. It is the liberty to commit crimes which 
protects a hated sway, and all restraint removed from the 
sword. Everything may you do in cruelty with no impunity, 
except when you dare to do it. Let him who wishes to be 
virtuous remove from a court. Goodness and supreme 
power do not agree together ; he will be always afraid whom 
cruolty shall shame. Not with impunity let Magnus have 
despised thy years, who thinks that thou art not able to 
drive away even the vanquished from our shores. 

"Nor let a stranger deprive thee of thy sceptre; nearer 
pledges hast thou; if thou art tired of reigning, yield up 
Nile and Pharos to thy condemned sister 3 . Let us at least 
protect Egypt from Latian arms. Whatever has not be- 

Deity with Phoebe or the moon, and of whom probably the sacred bull called 
" Apis " was the symbol. It was the rule with the priesthood not to allow the 
"Apis" to live beyond a certain time. When his allotted period had ex- 
pired they drowned him in the sacred well, and then amid tears and lamen- 
tations sought another to substitute in his place ; which was recognized by 
certain marks on the forehead. 

1 And the sacred ties of the deceased parent) ver. 481. He alleged the 
obligations which the father of Ptolemy lay under to Pompey. 

2 Have rendered many a one guilty) ver. 484. " Scrupulous attention to 
the laws, human and divine, often makes persona appear guilty in the eyes 
of those who are thwarted thereby." 

3 To thy condemned titter) ver. 500. He alludes to Cleopatra, the sister of 
Ptolemy, who, by the will of Ptolemy Auletes, was to share the throne with 
her younger brother Ptolemy, whom she was to marry; she had been 
expelled from the throne about a year before this period, through the arti- 
fices of Achillas and Pothinus, and had retreated into Syria, and there col- 
lected an army with which to compel her brother to reinstate her. 



B. vm. 502-527.] PHAESALIA. 319 

longed to Magnus, while the war was being waged 1 , will not 
belong to the conqueror. Now from the whole world expelled, 
after there is no confidence remaining in his fortunes, he 
seeks a nation with which to fall ; he is distracted by the 
ghosts of fellow-citizens. And not only from the arms of 
his father-in-law does he fly ; from the faces of the Senate 
he is flying, of whom a great part is gorging the Thessalian 
birds-; he dreads the nations, too, whom, mingled in one 
carnage, he has abandoned ; kings, also, does he fear, all of 
whose .fortunes he has ruined ; guilty, too, of Thessaly, in 
no land received, he appeals to our land, which not as yet 
he has betrayed. 

"A more just cause of complaint, Ptolemy, has been 
given to us against Magnus. Why dost thou stain 3 with 
the crimes of war Pharos distant and ever at repose, and 
u-Ju/ make our lands suspected by the conqueror? Why 
has this region alone pleased thee, on thy fall, upon which to 
bring the fortunes of Pharsalia and thy own punishment ? 
Already do we incur a blame 4 , to be wiped away with the 
sword, in that on us, at thy persuasion, the Senate conferred 
the sceptre. By our wishes we have encouraged thy arms. 
This sword, which the Fates bid us unsheathe, I have pro- 
vided, not for thee, but for the conquered one. Magnus, thy 
vitals I will pierce ; those of thy father-in-law I could have 
preferred. Whither everything is being borne \ we are 
hurried on. 

" Dost thou have a doubt whether it is necessary for me 
to destroy thee while yet I may ? What confidence in our 
kingdom brings thee hither, unhappy man? Dost thou 
not behold our people unarmed, and, the Nile receding, 
hardly able to dig the softened fields 6 ? It is right to take 
measure of one's kingdom, and to confess one's strength. 

1 While UK, war was being waged) ver. 502. He alludes to the circumstance of 
Egypt having given no assistance to Pompey during his campaign in Thessaly. 

8 /* gorging the Thessalian birds) ver. 507. See B. vii. 1. 831, and the 
Note to the passage. 

3 Why dost thou stain) ver. 513. He here apostrophizes Pompey. 

4 Already do we incur a blame) ver. 517. " Already we are guilty of a 
crime only to be expiated by the sword of Caesar, in having been indebted 
for the kingdom to the Roman senate influenced by Pompey." 

5 Whither everything is being borne) ver. 522. To the side of Cseear. 

The softened fields) ver. 626. " Mollia," " pliant for the purposes of hus- 
bandry." 



320 PHAKSALIA. [B. VIIL 527-550. 

Art thou, Ptolemy, able to support the downfall of Magnus, 
beneath which Rome lies prostrate ? Dost thou presume 
to stir the graves and the ashes of Thessaly, and to summon 
war against thy realms ? Before the Emathian combat with 
no arms did we side; is the camp of Pompey now to please 
thee, which the whole earth forsakes ? Dost thou now provoke 
the resources of the victor and destinies that have been 
ascertained ? It befits not to desert in adversity, but it so 
befits those who have attended upon the prosperity. No 
fidelity ever made choice of unfortunate friends." 

All assent to the villany. The boy king rejoices at the 
unusual honor, that now his servants allow matters of such 
importance to be entrusted to him. For the crime Achillas is 
chosen. Where the perfidious land 1 projects in the Casian 
sands, and the Egyptian shallows attest the adjoining 
Syrtes, he provides a little bark, with companions for the 
monstrous crime 2 , and with swords. O Gods of heaven! 
have Nile and barbarian Memphis and the multitude so 
effeminate of Pelusian Canopus a such a disposition as this? 
Does civil strife thus depress the world ? Do the Roman 
fortunes thus lie prostrate ? Is there any room left for Egypt 
in these disasters, and is the Pharian sword introduced? 
At least, ye civil wars, preserve this fidelity ; afford kindred 
hands 4 , and drive afar misdeeds committed by foreign hands, 
if, with a name so illustrious Magnus has deserved to be 
the ground for Caesar's crimes. 

1 Where the perfidious land) ver. 539. "Perfida;" either on account of 
the unsteady footing of the sands for passengers, or, as Burmann thinks, by 
reason of the shoals and quicksands, or by reason of the treachery of its in- 
habitants. The part of the shore here mentioned lay at the foot of Mount 
Casius. 

z For the monstrous crime) ver. 541. "Monstri" may either mean "the 
dreadful crime," or " the monster of wickedness," in allusion to himself. 

3 Of Pelusian Canopus) ver. 543. \Yeise justly observes that the expres- 
sion "Pelusian Canopus" is incongruous, inasmuch as Pelusium lay on the 
extreme eastern and Canopus near the most westerly mouth of the Nile. 
Its inhabitants are justly spoken of as " mollis turba," " an effeminate multi- 
tude," for Canopus was proverbially famed for its voluptuousness. Strabo 
informs us that there was a temple there dedicated to Serapis, to which mul- 
titudes resorted by the canal from Alexandria. He says that the canal was 
filled, night and day, with men and women dancing to music on board the 
vessels, with the greatest licentiousness. 

4 Afford kindred hands) ver. 548. He means that at least Pompey merits to 
fall by the hands of his o wii countrymen, and not by those of foreign miscreants. 



B. vm. 550-564.] PHARSALIA. 321 

Dost thou not dread, Ptolemy, the downfall of a name so 
great? The heavens, too, thundering ', dost thou, impure 
one and but half a man 2 , presume to interpose thy profane 
hands ? Not that he was the subduer of the world, and not 
that he was thrice borne in his chariot 3 to the Capitol, the 
ruler, too, of kings, the avenger of the Senate, and the son- 
in-law of the conqueror ; what might have be*en for a Pharian 
tyrant enough, he was a Roman. Why dost thou lay open 
our entrails with the sword ? Thou knowest not, dishonor- 
able boy, thou knowest not, hi what position thy fortunes 
are 4 ; now without any right dost thou wield the sceptre of 
the Nile ; in civil fight has he fallen who gave to thee thy 
realms. 

Now had Magnus denied his sails to the wind, and by the 
aid of oars ' was making for the accursed shores ; to meet 
whom, borne in a two-oared boat, not long the wicked band 
pushed on ; and pretending that the realms of Pharos lie 

1 The heavens, too, thundering) ver. 551. " Ccelo tonante" admits of two 
significations : " While the heavens are pursuing Pompey with their thunders, 
dost thou interpose]" or, "While the heaven is rent with the thunders of the 
Civil War, dost thou interpose 1 ?" 

2 And lut half a man) ver. 552. " Semivir." By this epithet he may either 
allude to the effeminate boy Ptolemy, or to his eunuch minister Pothinus. 

3 Thrice lorne in his chariot) ver. 553. He alludes to the three triumphs 
of Pompey, namely, over Hiarbas, king of Numidia, over Sertorius, the 
Marian leader in Spain, and over Mithridates, the king of Pontus. See 
B. vii. 1. 685. 

4 In ichat position thy fortunes are) ver. 558. Being no longer under the 
protection of Pompey. 

5 And by the aid of oars) ver. 561. The application of Pompey to 
Ptolemy for his aid is thus related by Caesar in the Civil War, B. iii. 
c. 103: "Pompey having sailed for Pelusium, it happened that king 
Ptolemy, a minor, was there with a considerable army, engaged in war with 
his sister Cleopatra, whom, a few months before, by the assistance of his 
relations and friends, he had expelled from the kingdom ; and her camp la}' 
at a small distance from his. To him Pompey applied to be permitted to 
take refuge in Alexandria, and to be protected in his calamity by his 
powerful assistance, in consideration of the friendship and good feeling which 
had subsisted between his father and him. But Pompey's deputies having 
executed their commission, began to converse with less restraint with the 
king's troops, and to advise them to act with friendship to Pompey, and not 
to think meanly of his bad fortune. In Ptolemy's army were several of 
Pompey's soldiers, of whom Gabinius had received the command in Syria, and 
had brought them over to Alexandria, and, at the conclusion of the war, had 
left with Ptolemy, the father of the young king." 

Y 



322 PHARSALIA, [a vm. 5G4-584. 

open to Magnus, bade him come from the prow of the lofty 
ship into the little hark, and censured the unfavourable 
shore, and the tides from the two seas 1 upon the shoals 
that break them, which forbid foreign fleets to approach the 
land. And liad not the laws of the Fates, and the approach 
of a wretched death destined by the command of an eternal 
ordination, forced Magnus, condemned to destruction, unto 
the shore, to no one of his attendants were wanting orn< us 
of the crime ; for, if their fidelity had been unstained, if tin; 
palace had been with true good feeling open to Magnus, the 
giver of the sceptre, it was clear that the Pharian monarch 
would have come, together with all his fleet. 

But he yields to his destiny 2 ; and, bidden to leave his 
fleet, he obeys, and delights to prefer death to fear. Cor- 
nelia was going straightway into the enemy's ship, through 
this more impatient at being absent from her departing 
husband because she apprehended calamity. " Stay behind, 
daring wife," said he, " and thou, son, I pray, and afar from 
the shore await my fate ; and upon this neck make trial of 
the fidelity of the tyrant." 

But towards him, thiis harshly refusing, frantic Cornelia 
extended her two hands 3 . "Whither, cruel one," she said, 

1 And the tides from Vie two seas) ver. 566. He probably alludes to the 
two tides coming from the opposite sidea of the Casian promontory, and 

meeting on the shoals. 

2 But he yields to his destiny) ver. 575. The circumstances of Pompey's 
death are thus related by Caesar in the Civil War, B. iii. c. 104 : " The 
king's friends, who were regents of the kingdom during the minority, being 
.informed of these things, either induced by fear, as they afterwards declared, 
lest 1'ompey should corrupt the king's army, and seize on Alexandria and 
Egypt, or despising his bad fortune, as, in adversity, friends commonly 
change to enemies, in public gave a favourable answer to his deputies, and 
desired him to come to the king ; but secretly laid a plot against him, and 
dispatched Achillas, captain of the king's guards, a man of singular boldness, 
and Lucius Septimius, a military tribune, to assassinate him. Being kindly 
addressed by them, and deluded by his acquaintance with Septimius, be- 
cause in the war with the pirates the latter had commanded a company under 
him, he embarked in a small boat with a few attendants, and was there 
murdered by Achillas and Septimius. In like manner, Lucius Lentulus 
was seized by the king's order, and put to death in prison." 

* Extended far two hands) ver. 583. Plutarch relates that, embracing 
her, he left Cornelia in tears, and ordered two centurions, a freedinan 
named Philippus, and a servant, to go on board the boat. When the at- 
tendants of Achillas held out their hands to help him on board, he turned 



u. vin. 584-609.] PHAESALIA. 328 

"dost thou depart without me? Am I left again, removed 
afar from the Thessalian woes 1 ? Never with joyous omens 
are we wretched persons severed asunder. Couldst thou not 
have guided thy ship elsewhere when thou didst fly, and 
have left me in the retreats of Lesbos, if thou didst intend 
to drive me away from all lands ? Or do I only please thee 
as thy companion upon the waves?" When in vain, she 
had poured forth these ivords, still in her anxiety did she 
hang over the end of the stern; and with astounded fear 
neither was she able in any direction to turn her eyes away, 
nor yet to look on Magnus. 

The fleet stands anxious upon the fate of the chieftain, 
fearing not arms and crime, but lest with submissive prayers 
Pompey should venerate the sceptre presented by his own 
hands. As he is preparing to pass on board, Septimius, a 
Roman soldier 2 , salutes him from the Pharian ship; who 
(oh shame to the Gods of heaven!), the javelin laid aside 3 , 
as a body-guard was bearing the disgraceful weapons of 
.royalty; fierce, violent, unrelenting, and less inclined to 
carnage than no one of the wild beasts. Who, Fortune, 
may not suppose that thou didst spare the nations, in that 
this right hand was wanting in the war, and that thou didst 
drive afar from Thessaly weapons so baneful ? Thou dost so 
dispose the swords, alas ! that in no quarter of the world a 
civil crime may not be perpetrated for thee. 

To the victors themselves a disgrace, and a tale never to- 
be free from shame to the Gods of heaven: thus did a 
Pioman sword obey a king ; and the Pellsean boy, Magnus, 
cut thy throat with a sword thy own. With what character 
shall posterity hand down Septimius to future ages ? By 

to his wife and younger son, and exclaimed in the words of Sophocles, 
" Whoever goes to a tyrant, becomes a slave, even though he goes thither a 
free man." 

1 Removed afar from the Thessalian woes) ver. 585. " Thessalicis submota 
malis." " Separated from you on the eve of woes as great as those which 
you suffered in Thessaly." 

2 Septimius, a Roman soldier) ver. 597. Appian, evidently by mistake, 
calls this miscreant, Sempronius. 

3 The javelin laid aside) ver. 598. " Pilo." See B. i. 1. 7, and the Note to 
the passage. The meaning is, that he was no longer serving in the Roman 
army. 

Y 2 



324 PHARSALIA. [B. vra. 609-632. 

what name shall they speak of this crime who have pro- 
nounced that of Brutus a wickedness * ? 

Now had arrived the period of his closing hour, and borne 
off in the Pharian boat he had now lost the disposal of him- 
self. Then did the royal miscreants prepare to unsheathe 
their swords 2 . When he beheld their weapons closing upon 
him, he covered up his features, and, disdaining to expose 
to Fortune his bared head, then did he close his eyes, and 
hold his breath, that he might be able to utter no words 
and spoil his eternal fame by lamentations. But after the 
murderous Achillas had pierced his side with his pointed 
weapon, with not a groan he submitted to the stroke *, and 
despised the villany, and kept his body unmoved, and 
proved himself when dying to be Pompey, and revolved these 
things in his breast : 

" Ages, never to be silent, wait upon the woes of Rome, 
and generations to follow look from the whole earth upon 
this bark and the Pharian faith. Now think upon thy fame. 
The prospering fortunes of a lengthened life have flowed 
on for thee. Nations know not, if at thy death thou dost not 
prove it, whether thou dost know how to endure adversity. 
Give way to no shame, nor grieve at the author of thy fate. 
By whatever one thou art smitten, think it the hand of 
thy father-in-law. Though they should rend and tear me, 
still, O Gods of heaven, I am happy, and no God has the 
power to deprive me of that. The prosperity of my life is 
changed ; through death a person does not become wretched. 

1 That of Brutus a wickedness) ver. 609-10. " If Brutus who slew Caesar 
was a murderer, what was this Septimius]" 

2 Prepare to unsheathe their sieords) ver. 612. According to Plutarch, 
when Pompey had got to a considerable distance from the ship, and near the 
shore, and perceived that he was not very courteously treated, he turned to 
Septimius, and addressing him, asked him if he did not remember him as 
having formerly fought under him, on which Septimius, not deigning to give 
him an answer, only nodded his head. When Pompey was rising to get out 
of the boat, Septimius was the first to run him through the back with his 
sword, after which Salvius and Achillas drew their swords, and dispatched 
him. 

3 With not a groan he submitted to the strote) ver. 619. "Nullo genii tu 
consensit ad ictum." This may either mean that, by uttering no sigh, he, as 
it were, resigned himself to death ; or that he did not, by any sigh, indicate 
that he had been pierced by the sword. 



B. vni. 632-661.] PHAESALIA. 325 

Cornelia beholds this murder and my Pompey. So 
much more patiently, grief, restrain thy sighs, I entreat; 
my son and my wife truly love me, if they admire me hi 
my death." 1 

Such was the self-possession of the mind of Magnus; 
this power had he over his dying spirit. 

But Cornelia, not so well able to behold the ruthless 
crime as to endure it with courage, fills the air with lament- 
able words : " O husband, I, wicked that I am, have mur- 
dered thee ; the cause, of the fatal delay to thee was Lesbos 
so remote thy course, and Caesar has arrived the first 2 
at the shores of the Nile. For who else had the right to 
commit the crime? But thou, whoever thou art, sent down, 
by the Gods of heaven against that life, having a view either 
to Caesar's wrath, or to thyself, knowest not, cruel one, where 
are the vitals themselves of Magnus ; thou dost hasten and 
redouble thy blows, where such is the wish of the vanquished. 
Let him pay a penalty not less than death, and first let him 
behold my head cut off. Not free am I from the fault of 
the warfare, who alone of the matrons, an attendant on the 
waves and in the camp, scared away by no fatalities, sheltered 
him conquered, which even monarchs feared to do. Have 
I, husband, deserved this, to be left hi safety in the ship ? 
Perfidious one, didst thou spare me ? Thou coming to thy 
latest hour, have I been deserving of life? I will die, and 
that not by the favour of the king. Either, sailors, allow me 
a headlong leap, or to place the halter and the twisted ropes 
around my neck ; or let some companion worthy of Magnus 
provide a sword. For Pompey he may do that which he 
may lay to the charge of the arms of Caesar. O cruel men, 
do ye restrain me hurrying on to my fate ? Still, husband, 
thou dost survive, and now, Magnus, Cornelia has not the 
disposal of herself. They hinder me from hastening on my 
death ; for the conqueror I am reserved." 

1 If they admire me in my death) ver. 634-5. " If they show more admi- 
ration of my fortitude than grief at my death, they will be showing greater 
affection for me." 

2 And Ccesar has arrived the first) ver. 641. In her ignorance of the cir- 
cumstances, she accuses herself of being the cause of his death. She thinka 
that, by his coming out of his way to meet her at Lesbos, Caesar has gained 
time to reach Egypt before him, and give orders for him to be put to death. 



326 PHAK3ALIA. [B. na 662-685. 

Thus having said, and having fallen into the arms of 
her friends, she was carried off, the alarmed ship hastening 
away. 

But when the hack and the breast of Magnus resoumli I 
with the sword, those who beheld the lacerated head con- 
fess that the majestic gracefulness of his hallowed fori i 
remained, and that his features were angered at the Gods, 
and that the last moments of death changed nothing of the 
mien and features of the hero. But ruthl.^s Septiraius 
in this act of villany invents a villany still greater; and, 
the covering cut asunder 1 , he uncovers the sacred features 
of the half-dead Magnus, and lays hold of the breathing 
head, and places the languid neck crosswise upon a bench. 
Then he cuts the nerves and veins, and is long in breaking 
the knotty bones; not as yet was it an art'- to whip off a 
head with the sword. 

But after the neck, divided, shrunk back from the trunk, 
the Pharian courtier 3 claimed to carry this hi liis right hand. 
Koman soldier, degenerate and playing a second part 4 , dost 
thou with the ruthless sword cut off the sacred head of 
Pompey, not to bear it away thyself? O fate, treated with 
extreme indignity! That the impious boy may recognize 
Magnus, that flowing hair revered by kings, and the long 
locks graceful with his noble forehead are seized by tlu> 
hand, and while the features are alive, and the sobs of the 
breath are moving the mouth to murmurs, and while the 
unclosed eyes are stiffening, the head is fixed on a Pharian. 
fpear a , which when ordering war never was there peace ; this 

1 The covering cut asunder) ver. 669. He alludes to the " toga," which 
Pompey had wrapped about his head when he was first struck. See 1. 614. 

2 Not as yet was it an art) ver. 673. The meaning is, that decapitation 
bad not as yet come to be an art. Suetonius tells us that Caligula trained an 
executioner to the art of catting off a head at a single blow. 

3 Tlte Pharian courtier) ver. 675. Achillas claims it as his right to carry 
the head to his sovereign. 

4 Playing a second part) ver. 676. " Operae secundae." This is a thea- 
trical simile. He expresses his surprise that a Roman soldier could consent 
to play a second part, in cutting off the head of Pompey for another to carry 
it as his trophy. 

a On a Pharian spear) ver. 681. " Veruto." The " verutnm " was the 
spear of the luiht infantry of the Roman army, the use of which was derived 
from the Samnites and the Yolsci. The shaft was three and a half feet long, 
and the point five inches. 



B. vm. 685-703.] PHARSALIA. 327 

it was that swayed the laws, and the Plain *, and the Kostra ; 
with this face, Fortune of Rome, didst thou gratify thyself. 

Nor enough was it for the disgraceful tyrant to have 
beheld this; he wished a memorial to survive the crime. 
Then, by an accursed art 2 , the moisture was extracted from 
the head, and, the brains removed, the skin was dried, and 
the putrid juices flowed forth from within, and the head was 
hardened by drugs poured into it 

Last offspring of the race of Lagus \ and about to perish, 
degenerate, and destined to yield to the rule of thy unchaste 
sister 4 ; whilst by thee the Macedonian is preserved 5 in 
the sacred vaults, and with mountains piled over them, the 
ashes of kings are at rest, while the Pyramids" and Mau- 
solean graves 7 , unworthy of them, enclose the shades of 
the Ptolemies and their abandoned line, are the shores to 
be beating against Pompey, and is the trunk to be tossed 
to and fro by the waves on the shoals ? Was it so burden- 
some a care to save the corpse entire for the father-in-law ? 
Fortune with this fidelity ended the fates of Magnus so 
prosperous ; with this death did she hurl him down from 

1 The Plain) ver. 685. " Campum." The " Campus Martins," where 
the magisterial elections of Rome took place. 

2 Then, by an accursed art) ver. 688. He alludes to the process of em- 
balming, which, as to the head, was performed by drawing out the moisture 
through the nostrils ; although in the present case, probably, there was no 
necessitj- to adopt that course. It was embalmed for the purpose of showing 
it to Caesar, and proving that Pompey was really slain. 

3 Last offspring of the race of Lagus) ver. 692. He perished shortly 
after, in the Alexandrian war against Caesar, being drowned in the Nile. 

4 The rule of thy unchaste sister) ver. 693. He alludes to Cleopatra, who 
was notorious for her unchaste conduct, and who was restored to the Egyptian 
throne by Caesar. 

5 The Macedonian is preserved) ver. 694. Alexander the Great was 
buried at Alexandria (which city he had founded, B.C. 332) by Ptolemy Lagus. 
He was buried in a sarcophagus of gold, under a tomb of stupendous size 
and gorgeous magnificence. His name is here expressed by " Macedon," as 
with the glory of Macedonia he was identified. 

8 While tlie Pyramids) ver. 697. It is probable that at least some of the 
Pyramids were devoted to funereal purposes. 

7 Mauxolean graves) ver. 697. "Mausolea" was a general term for 
tombs erected to the great, in imitation of that which Artimesia caused to 
be built at Halicarnassus, in honor of her husband Mausolus, king of Caria. 
The Roman Mausolea were in general formed of a succession of terraces, in 
imitation of the " rogns," or " funeral pile." 



328 PHARSALIA. fa. vm. 703-726. 

the highest summit of power, and cruelly centred all the 
calamities in one day, from which she granted him years 
so many of freedom ; and Pompey was one who never saw 
joys mingled with sorrows ; happy in no one of the Gods 
molesting him, and wretched in no one sparing him. 
Once for all with delaying hand did Fortune hurl him down. 
He is beaten to and fro on the sands, he is mangled on the 
rocks, the waves received into his wounds, the sport of the 
ocean ; and, no figure remaining, the only mark of Magnus 
is the loss of the head torn off. 

Still, before the conqueror touched upon the Pharian 
sands, Fortune suddenly provided for Pompey a tomb, lest 
he might lie in none, or lest in a better sepulchre. From 
his hiding-place Cordus, trembling 1 , runs down to the sea- 
shore. The seeker had been the unhappy attendant 2 of 
Magnus from the Idalian shores 3 of Cyprus, the abode of 
Cinyras. He amid the shades daring to move his steps, 
repressed his fear, overcome by affection, that he might 
bring the body, sought in the midst of the waves, to land, 
and draw Magnus to the shore. But little light does sor- 
rowing Cynthia afford amid the thickening clouds ; but the 
trunk, of different colour from the hoary sea, is perceived. 
He seizes the chieftain in his strict embrace, as the sea 
drags him away; now overpowered by a burden so vast 
he awaits the waves, and, the sea aiding him, moves on the 

1 Cordus, trembling) ver. 715. This story of Cordus is probably an in- 
vention of the Poet. Plutarch distinctly says that the body was burnt by 
Philippus, Pompey's freedman, who had accompanied him from the ship. He 
made the funeral pile with pieces of wreck which he found on the sea-shore, 
and while he was so employed an aged Roman came up by accident, and 
assisted him, having served under Pompey in his youth. It is just possible 
that his name may have been Cordus, which was not an uncommon cognomen 
among the Romans. The word " quaestor" has been thought to mean that 
Cordus held some office known by that name. It is much more likely that 
it means " a seeker," in allusion to his search for the body, .mentioned in 
1. 719. 

* The unhappy attendant) ver. 117. Philippus probably escaped unharmed, 
during the confusion attendant on the murder of Pompey at his landing. 

3 From the Idalian shores) ver. 716. Idalus was a mountain in the Isle 
of Cyprus, of which Cinyras had been king, who unknowingly committed 
incest with his daughter Myrrha, who became the mother of Adonis. See 
the story related in the Tenth Book of Ovid's Metamorphoses, 1. 299, et teq. 
Some ancient writers say that Cyprus was so called from Cyprus, the son, or, 
according to others, the daughter of Cinyras, king of Assyria. 



B. vm. 726-738.] PHARSALIA. 329 

corpse. After he has now seated himself upon the dry 
shore, he leans over Magnus, and pours forth his tears into 

ry wound, and to the Gods of heaven and the darkened 
he says : 

" Thy Pompey, Fortune, asks not a sepulchre precious 
with heaped-up frankincense ' ; not that the unctuous 
smoke may bear eastern odours from his limbs unto the 
stars ; that duteous necks of Romans may bear- their pa- 
rent, that the funereal procession should carry before it 
his ancient triumphs, that with the song of sorrow the 
market-places may re-echo 3 ; that the whole army, grieving, 
may go round the flames with arms reversed 4 . Grant to 
Magnus the lowly coffin* of the plebeian funeral, which 
may lower his torn corpse into the dry flames . Let not 

1 With, li&aped-up frankincense) ver. 729. It was the custom to throw 
frankincense and other costly aromatics on the funeral piles of the wealthy, 
although this practice was forbidden by the Twelve Tables. 

2 Romans may lear) ver. 732. The "lecticae," or "feretra," the biers 
on which the more wealthy were carried to the funeral pile, were often 
carried on the shoulders of the nearest relations of the deceased. Metellus 
was carried by his sons, Julius Caesar by the officers of state, and Augustus 
by the Senators. 

3 The market-places may re-echo) ver. 734. It is difficult to say whe- 
ther " fora " here means the judicial " fora," or the market-places at Rome, 
through which the funeral procession would have to pass, attended by 
musicians called " cornicienes," or " siticines," who played mournful strains. 
It is, however, ascertained that if the deceased was of illustrious rank, it 
was the custom for the funeral procession to go through the Forum, and 
to stop before the " Rostra," where a funeral oration in praise of the de- 
ceased was delivered. This practice was said to have been first introduced 
by Valerius Publicola, who pronounced a funeral oration in honor of his 
colleague L. Junius Brutus. Probably this practice is obscurely referred to 
in the present passage. 

4 With arms reversed) ver. 735. By the word " projectis," some have 
suggested that the Poet means " throwing " their arms upon the funeral pile, 
which, however, is probably not the sense of the passage. It means " re- 
versing," or " lowering their arms ; " at the funeral of a general it was the 
custom for the troops to march three times round the funeral pile. 

5 Grant to Magnus the lowly coffin) ver. 736. " Vilem arcam " has been 
taken by some of the Scholiasts to mean the " sandapila," or " bier," on 
which the bodies of the lower classes were carried to the funeral pile. The 
word, however, thus used, properly signifies a coffin made of stone, in which 
bodies were buried which were not burnt. In later times, however, the word 
came to be applied to any kind of coffin or tomb. 

8 Into the dry flames) ver. 737. On which there was no one present to 
pour oil and aromatics. 



830 PHARflATJA. [u. vm. 738-770. 

wood be wanting for him ill-fated, nor yet a humble burner. 
Be it enough, O Gods of heaven, that Cornelia does not lie 
prostrate, with flowing locks, and, embracing her husband, 
command the torch to be applied, but, unhappy wife, is 
absent from the last rites of the tomb, and still is not far 
distant from the shore." 

Thus having said, afar the youth beholds a little fire, 
with no watcher, burning a body 1 , unregarded by its friends. 
Thence he bears off the flames, and taking the half-burnt 
wood from beneath the limbs, he says: " Whoever thou art, 
neglected ghost, and dear to ivo friend of thine, but more 
happy than Pompey, grant pardon that now a stranger's 
hand despoils thy constructed pyre. If there is any sease 
left after death, thou thyself dost yield up thy funeral pile, 
and dost submit to this spoiling of thy tomb, and dost feel 
ashamed for thee to burn the shades of Pompey, scattered 
abroad." 

Thus does he speak, and with his bosom filled with the 
burning embers he flies away to the trunk, which, almost 
carried back by the waves, is hovering on the edge of the 
shore. He moves away the surface of the sands, and, trem- 
bling, places in the little trench the fragments collected 
from afar of a vessel broken up. No oaken beams press 
upon the noble corpse, upon no built-up wood do the limbs 
recline ; applied, not placed beneath, the fire receives Mag- 
nus. Sitting near the flames, he said: " greatest chieftain, 
and sole glory of the Hesperian name, if more sad to thee 
this pile than the tossing on the deep, if more sad than 
no funereal rites, withdraw thy shade and thy mighty spirit 
from my dntcous offices. The injustice of Fate declares this 
to be right ; lest a monster of the sea, lest a wild beast, 
lest the birds, lest the wrath of cruel Csesar should venture 
aught, accept, so far as thou canst, tfase flames, thus burnt 
by a Koman hand. 

" If Fortune should grant me a return to Hesperia, not 
in this spot shall ashes so sacred repose ; but, Magnus, 
Cornelia shall receive thee, and by my hand transfer thee 

1 Beholds a lit&e fire, with, no watchei; burning a body) ver. 743. The 
improbability of this part of the story i very striking, and it is somewhat 
surprising that the Poet did not, in preference, adopt the historical account 
alone. 



B. vni. 770-797.] PHARSALIA. 331 

to the urn. In the meantime let me mark the shore with 
a little stone, that there may be a memorial of thy grave ; 
if any one, perchance, should wish to appease thee tfius cut 
off, and to render the full rites due to death, he may find 
the ashes of thy trunk, and may know the sands to which, 
Magnus, he is to bring back thy head." 

Thus having said, with fuel heaped on he arouses the 
sluggish flames. Magnus is consumed, and disappears in 
the fire slowly burning, with his moisture feeding the pile. 
But now the day had dimmed the stars, the harbingers 
of (hiwn ; he, the ceremonial of the funeral interrupted, 
alarmed, seeks his hiding-place upon the shore. What pu- 
nishment, simple man, dost thou dread for this crime, for 
which loud-mouthed fame has taken charge of thee for all 
years to come ? The unnatural father-in-law, even, will com- 
mend the burial of the bones of Magnus ; only go, secure of 
pardon, and disclosing the sepulchre, demand the head. 

Affection compels him to place the finishing stroke to 
his duteous offices. He takes up the bones half-burnt and 
not yet quite decomposed, full of ligaments and of marrow 
tmconsumed he quenches them with sea-water, and, col- 
lected together, encloses them in a little spot of earth. 
Then, that the light breeze may not bear away the ashes 
uncovered, he presses down the sand with a stone ; and 
that the sailor may not disturb the grave for fastening the 
cable, he inscribes the sacred name with a half-burnt stake, 
HERE MAGNUS LIES. Fortune, it pleases thee to call this 
the tomb of Pompey, in which his father-in-law would ra- 
ther that he were interred 1 , than deprived of the earth. 

Rash right hand, why dost thou block up the tomb of 
Magnus, and shut in the wandering ghost ? "Wherever the 

1 Would rather tfiat he were interred) ver. 795. As Ltican would not 
readily attribute humanity to Caesar, it is suggested that Caesar may have 
wished this for two reasons : lest, if the body of Pompey should remain 
unburied, he should be haunted by his ghost ; and because he might 
deem it a greater disgrace to Pompey's remains to be entombed in this homely 
manner than to be deprived of burial altogether. Another reason would 
be that, in consequence of the burial, Caesar would feel more rare of his 
death, than if he was merely told of it, and that the body was lost. Ap- 
pian mentions another inscription as being placed upon the tomb of Pom- 
pey : " Hardly could a Temple have contained him who is covered with a 
Bttle sand." 



332 PHASSALIA. [B. VIIL 797-818. 

extremity of the earth hongs steep over the ocean flowing 
back does he lie. The Roman name and all its empire is 
the limit of the tomb of Magnus. Overwhelm the stone re- 
plete with the disgrace of the Gods. If to Hercules belongs 
the whole of (Eta 4 , and the whole mountain ridges of Nysa 
make room for Bromius, why for Magnus in Egypt is there 
a single stone? All the fields of Lagus he might possess, 
if upon no clod his name was inscribed. Let us nations 
still be ignorant, and, Magnus, through respect for thy ashes, 
let us tread upon no sands of Nile. 

But if thou dost deign to grace a stone with name so 
holy, add thy deeds so mighty, and the most glorious memo- 
rials of thy exploits; add the fierce rebellion of Lepidus*, 
and the Alpine wars ; the conquered arms, too, of Serto- 
rius 3 , the Consul recalled; the triumphs, too, which, still a 
knight J , he enjoyed; commerce, too, rendered safe to na- 
tions, and the Cilicians, fearful of the sea. Add barbarism 
subdued ', and the wandering nations a , and whatever realms 
lie beneath the eastern breeze and Boreas. Say how that 
after arms he always sought again the toga of the citizen ; 
how that, thrice his chariot speeding on in triumph, he was 
content to make present to his country of full many a 
triumph. What tomb can contain these things ? Here rises 
a wretched sepulchre, filled with no titles, with no recital so 
vast of his annals ; and after being wont to be read, above 7 

1 Belongs the whole of (Eta) yer. 801. See L 227, and the Note to the 
passage. 

* Rebellion of Lepidus) ver. 808. See B. ii. L 547. 

3 The conquered arms, too, of Sertorius) ver. 809. He alludes to the 
doubtful victories which Pompey gained over Sertorius in Spain, who had, 
during eight years, withstood the arms of the Proconsul, Q. Caecilius Metel- 
lus Pius. Lucan is incorrect in hinting that Metellus was " Consul revoca- 
tus," as he was neither Consul during the war with Sertorius, nor was he 
recalled, but was obliged to summon to his aid the armies of Gaul and 
Nearer Spain, and to send to Rome for the assistance of Pompey as Proconsul. 
See B. ii. 1. 549. 

4 Which, still a knight) ver. 810. He alludes to the triumphs which Pompey 
enjoyed, contrary to usage, while of Equestrian rank. 

4 Barbarism subdued) ver. 812. His victories gained over Mithridates, 
and the people of Pontus, Armenia, Paphlagonia, Cappadocia, and the nomad 
or wandering Scythians. 

* And the wandering nations) ver. 812. His conquests of the Iberi, the 
Basternse, the Syrians, and the Jews. 

7 Wont to be read above) ver. 818. He here alludes to the inscription* 



B. vra. 818-832.] PHAESALIA. 333 

the lofty heights of the Gods and the arches built up * with 
the spoils of the foe, not far is the name of Pompey from 
the lowest sand, crouching low on his tomb, which the so- 
journer cannot read standing upright, which, unless pointed 
out, the Roman stranger would be passing by. 

Egyptian land, rendered guilty by civil fate, not unde- 
servedly indeed was warning given 2 by the lines of the 
prophetess of Cumse, that the soldier of Hesperia was not 
to touch the Pelusian shores of the Nile, and the banks 
swelling in summer-time. What, ruthless land, ought I to 
pray for thee for a crime so great ? May Nile, detained in 
the region from which he springs, change the course of his 
streams, and may the barren fields miss the wintry waters :i , 
and mayst thou be entirely lost in the loose sands of the 
Ethiopians. We in Roman Temples have received thy 
Isis 4 , and the half-dog Deities 5 , and the sistra command- 
on the Temples of the Gods, which, when votive, in conspicuous characters 
bore the names of the founders. 

1 And the arches built up) ver. 819. " Arcus" has been supposed to 
refer to the Theatre of Pompey; but it is much more probable that the 
triumphal arches which were erected in honor of victorious generals are here 
alluded to ; as they were covered with spoils and trophies taken from the 
enemy. 

2 Was warning given) ver. 824. The Sibylline books are said to have 
stated that harm would come to the soldiers of the west who should land in 
Egypt. We lenrn from Cicero, in one of his Epistles, that the Quindecim- 
viri, or fifteen guardians of the sacred Books, interpreted this prophecy in 
reference to the orders given by Pompey and the Senate to the Proconsul 
Gabinius, to restore Ptolemy Auletes to his kingdom. 

3 Miss the wintry waters) ver. 829. " Imbribus " cannot here mean 
" showers," inasmuch as there are no showers in Egypt, a fact to which the 
Poet has already alluded in the present Book, 1. 447. The word must 
therefore signify high inundations of the Nile, fertilizing the lands. May, 
however, translates the line, 

" May thy unfruitful fields want winter rain." 

* Have received thy his) ver. 831. Isis was said to be the same Deity 
as lo, the daughter of Inachus. See the Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. i. 
1. 747. Apuleius tells us that the worship of Isis was introduced at Rome 
in the time of Sulla. Many enactments were passed to check the licentious- 
ness of her worship, but were resisted by the populace. It was, in a great 
measure, kept without the City walls. The most important Temple was 
in the Campus Martins, whence she obtained the epithet of Isis Campensis. 
Those initiated in her mysteries wore, in the public processions, masks re- 
sembling the heads of dogs. 

* And the half-dog Deities) ver. 832. He probably alludes to Anubis, an 



334 PHABSATJA. [B. Tin. 832-844. 

ing grief 1 , and Osiris, whom 2 thou by mourning dost attest 
to have been a man; thou, Egypt, art keeping our shades 3 
in the dust. 

Thou, also, although thou hast now granted Temples to 
the ruthless tyrant 4 , hast not yet sought, O Rome, the ashes 
of Porapey ; still lies in exile the ghost of the chieftain. 
If farmer ages dreaded the threats of the conqueror, now, 
at least, receive the bones of thy Magnus, if, not yet rooted 
up by the waves, they remain in the hated land. Who will 
respect the tomb s ? Who will be afraid to disturb a ghost 
deserving of sacred rites ? I wish that Rome would enjoin 
this wickedness on me, and be ready to employ my bosom" ; 
enough, and O too greatly blessed, if me it should befall to 

Egyptian Deity, which had the body of a man and the head of a dog. 
Some writers say that it was Mercury who was thus represented, and that 
this form was given him in remembrance of the fact of Isis having em- 
ployed dogs in her search for Osiris, when he was slain by his brother 
Typhon. Other authors say that Anubis was the son of Osiris, and that he 
distinguished himself with a helmet wearing the figure of a dog, when he 
followed his father to battle. Herodotus mentions the worship of dogs by 
the Egyptians. 

1 The sislra commanding griff) ver. 832. The "sistrum" was a mystical 
musical instrument, used by the ancient Egyptians in the worship of Isis, 
and other ceremonials. It was shaken with the hand, and emitted a tink- 
ling sound. Plutarch tells us that the shaking of its four cross-bars was 
supposed to represent the agitation of the four elements, earth, air, fire, and 
water ; and that the cat which was usually sculptured on the end of it, 
represented the moon. Apuleius says that these instruments were sometimes 
made of silver, and even of gold. It was introduced at Rome with the wor- 
ship of Isis, and it is said to be used in Nubia and Abyssinia at the present 
day. 

* And Osiris, whom) ver. 833. Osiris was the chief male Divinity of the 
Egyptians, and the husband of Isis. Heliodorus says that he was God of 
the Nile, while Isis was Goddess of the earth. Lucan here suggests that the 
lamentations of Isis for the death of Osiris at the hands of his brother Ty- 
phon proves that he was a mortal and not a Divinity. 

3 Art keeping our shades) ver. 834. " Nostros Manes." Literally, "our 
jhades;" meaning, " the shade of Pompey worthy of our worship and venera- 
tion." 

4 Granted Temples to the ruthless tyrant) ver. 835. He alludes to the 
deification of Julius Caesar by public decree of the Roman Senate, and the 
erection of Temples in his honor. On this subject see the Translation of 
Ovid's Metamorphoses, in Bohn's Classical Library, pp. 553-4. 

4 Who will respect the toml) ver. 840. " V'ho, in such a case, would hare 
any superstitious fear of violating his tomb ?" 

* Be ready to employ my bosom) ver. 843. " Sinn." In the folds of the 



B. Tin. 844-861.] PHAKSALIA. 335 

transfer to Ausonia the ghost removed, if of a chieftain to 
violate such a tomb. 

Perhaps, when Rome shall be desirous to ask of the 
Gods of heaven either an end for the barren furrows, or for 
the fatal south winds', or for heat too great, or for the 
earth moving the houses, by the counsel and command, 
Magnus, of the Gods, thou wilt remove to thy City, and the 
highest Priest 2 will carry thy ashes. Now, who will go to 
Syene :i , scorched by the burning Crab, and Thebes, parched 
beneath 4 the showery Pleiad, a spectator of the Nile ? who, 
Magnus, will repair to the waters of the deep Ked Sea, or 
the ports of the Arabians, a barterer of the merchandize of 
the East, whom the venerable stone upon the tomb, and 
the ashes scattered perchance upon the surface of the sands 
will not attract, and who will not delight in propitiating thy 
shade, and in preferring thee to Casian Jove 5 ? 

In no degree will that grave prove injurious to thy fame. 
Buried in a Temple and in gold, shade of higher worth 
thou wouldst be ; now is Fortune in place of the greatest 
Divinity, lying buried hi this tomb . More august than 7 

bosom of the dress. The same expression is used in 1. 752. So in the 
Metamorphoses of Ovid, B. xiii. 1. 425-6, " Dulichian hands have dragged 
her away, while clinging to their tombs and giving kisses to their bones : yet 
the ashes of one has she taken out, and, so taken out, has carried with her 
in her bosom, the ashes of Hector." 

1 For the fatal south winds) ver. 847. "Feralibus." Blowing from Africa, 
and causing pestilence. 

2 The highest Priest) ver. 850. " Summus sacerdos." The " Pontifex 
Maximus," who was the chief in influence of the Roman priesthood, but se- 
cond in rank to the " Flamen Dialis," or high priest of Jupiter. 

3 Who will go to Syene) ver. 851. See B. ii. 1. 587, and the Note to the 



4 And Thebes, parched beneath) ver. 852. He speaks of Thebes in Egypt 
as situate in a climate a stranger to rain. This city, which is called in 
Scripture No, or No-Ammon, was the capital of Thebais, or Upper Egypt. 
It stood on both banks of the Nile, and was said to have been founded by the 
Ethiopians. Its later name was Diospolis Magna, or the Great City of 
Jove. The ruins of Thebes are the most magnificent in modern Egypt. 

4 Preferring thee to Casian Jove) ver. 858. There was a Temple of Jupiter 
on Mount Casius. 

* Lying buried in this toml) ver. 861. " Fortune seems to be buried here 
with Pompey, so long her favourite." 

7 More august than) ver. 861-2. More august than the Temple and 
altars erected to Caesar in the Capitol at Borne, by Augustus and the Senate. 



336 PHARSALIA. [a vra. 861-872 

the altars of the conqueror is the stone beaten against upon 
the Libyan shore. Those who have full oft denied their 
frankincense to the Tarpeian Gods 1 would venerate the 
Deity enclosed beneath the dusky clod. 

This in future time will advantage thee, that the lofty 
mass of thy sepulchre, destined to endure, has not soared 
aloft with its ponderous marble. No great length of time 
will scatter the heap of scanty dust, and the tomb will fall, 
and the proofs of thy death will perish. An age more blest 
will come, in which there will be no credit given to those 
who point out that stone ; and to the generations of pos- 
terity Egypt will be as lying in the tomb of Magnus, as 
Crete in that 2 of the Thunderer. 

1 To the Tarpeian Gods) ver. 863. He seems to refer here to a reluctance 
on the part of the Egyptians to worship the Gods of Koine. 

- As Crete in thai) ver. 872. Universal testimony seems to have been 
given by the ancient writers to the untruthfulness of the Cretans. St. Paul, 
in his Epistle to Titus, c. i. v. 12, says, quoting from the Cretan poet Epime- 
nides, " One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, ' The Cretans 
are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.' This witness is true." Callima- 
chus says, " The Cretans are always liars ; for, Jove, they have thy tomb ! 
But thou didst not die ; for thou art for everlasting." Ovid also says, in his 
Art of Love, B. i. 1. 298, " Crete, which contains its hundred cities, cannot 
gainsay them, untruthful as it is." 



387 
BOOK THE NINTH 

CONTENTS. 

The soul of Pompey, leaving the tomb, soars to the abodes of the Blessed, 
and thence looking down upon the earth inspires the breasts of Brutus and 
Cato, 1-23. Cato, with the remnant of Pompey's forces, repairs to Cor- 
cyra, 24-35. And thence to Crete and Africa, where he meets the fleet 
of Pompey with Cornelia, 36-50. She, having beheld the death of her 
husband and the funeral pile, has been reluctant to leave the shores of 
Egypt, 51-116. After which she has touched at Cyprus, whence she has 
repaired to Africa to join Cato and the eldest son of Pompey, where 
Sextus informs his brother Cneiusof their father's death, 117-145. Cneiua 
is desirous to proceed to Egypt, but is dissuaded by Cato, 146-166. Cor- 
. nelia having landed, burns the vestments and arms of Pompey, which she 
has brought with her, in place of his body, and performs the funereal 
rites, 167-185. Cato delivers an oration in praise of Pompey, 186-214. 
The soldiers of Cato become dissatisfied, and wish to return home, the 
chief among the malcontents being Tarchondimotus, the Cilician, whom 
Cato rebukes ; on which another one replies that they followed Pompey 
for his own sake, and not for the love of civil war, and that they are 
now desirous to return home, 215-254. Cato is indignant, and by his 
eloquence prevails upon them to stay, 255-293. The soldiers are trained 
to arms, and the city of Gyrene is taken, 294-299. They embark 
for the kingdom of Juba ; the Syrtes are described, 300-318. A tem- 
pest arises, and the ships are separated, 319-347. The region of Tritonis 
is described, in which were formerly the golden orchards of the Hesperides, 
and the river Lethe, 348-367. The fleet, having escaped the Syrtes, 
anchors off the coast of Libya, 368-370. Cato, impatient of delay, per- 
suades his soldiers to disembark and to march over the sandy desert, 371- 
410. A description of Libya, and the evils to be encountered by those who 
travel there, 411-497. The soldiers are tormented by thirst, 498-511. 
They arrive at the Temple of Jupiter Ammon ; its situation is described, 
512-543. Labienus exhorts them to consult the oracle, 544-563. Cato 
dissuades them, saying that it is enough to know that a brave man ought 
to die with fortitude, 564-586. They proceed on their march, and arrive at 
a spring filled with serpents, at which, however, encouraged by Cato, they 
drink, 587-618. The Poet enters on an enquiry how Africa came to be 
thus infested with serpents, and relates the story of Medusa, C19-658. 
And how Perseus cut off her head, 659-684. And then flew in the air 
over Libya, the blood of the Gorgon falling on which produced the ser- 
pents, which are then described, 685-733. During Cato's march, many of 
his men are killed by the serpents ; their deaths are described, 734-838. 
The complaints of the soldiers, 839-880. The fortitude of Cato, 881-889. 
The Psylli assist them in their distress by sucking the poison out of their 
wounds, 890-941. They arrive at Leptis, 942-949. In the meantime 
Caesar, in pursuit of Pompey, sails along the Hellespont and touches at 

Z 



333 PHAKSALIA. [B. ix. 1-17. 

Troy, 950-965. Which is described, 966-999. He arrives in Egypt, 
where a soldier, sent by the king, meets him with the head of Pompey, 
1000-1033. Caesar, though really overjoyed, sheds tears, and reproaches 
Pompey's murderers, and then commands them to appease the shade of 
Pompey, 1034-1108. 

BUT not in the Pharian embers lay the shade, nor did a few 
ashes contain a ghost so mighty ; forth Inn a the tomb did 
he issue, and, leaving the limbs half burnt and the unworthy 
pile, he reached the concave of the Thunderer 1 , where the 
swarthy air 2 meets with the starry poles, and where it 
extends between the earth and the courses of the moon 
(half-deified shades 3 inhabit it, whom, guiltless in their 
lives, an ardent virtue 1 has made able to endure the lower 
tracts of heaven), and he withdrew his spirit to the eternal 
spheres. Not thither do those come entombed in gold, or 
buried amid frankincense. 

There, after he had filled himself with genuine light, 
and admired ' the wandering planets, and the stars fixed in 
the skies, he beheld beneath how vast a night our day lies 
concealed, and he laughed at the mockery of his headless 
body. Hence did he hover over the plains of Emathia, 
and the standards of the blood-stained Ccesar, and the fleets 
scattered upon the waves ; and, the avenger of crimes, he 

1 The concave of the Thunderer) ver. 4. " Convexa Tonantis ; " lite- 
rally, " the convex places of the Thunderer," meaning the heavens. 
According to some of the ancients the Elysian fields or abodes of the Blessed 
were situate in the western world, either in Spain or in the Fortunate 
Islands, beyond the pillars of Hercules. These were probably only imagi- 
nary islands, though on the discovery by the Romans of the Canary Islands 
the name of " Fortiinatrc insulae " was applied to them. The Platonics con- 
sidered the abode of the Blessed to be in the heavens, while others placed 
them in an imaginary region near the moon. 

- U7tr the swarthy air) ver. 5. He probably calls the atmosphere 
" black " or " swarthy " in comparison with the brightness of the heavens 
and the stars. 

3 Half-deified shades) ver. 7. He speaks of " aether," or the upper regions 
of the air, as inhabited by the Heroes or Demigods. 

4 An ardent virtue) ver. 7. " Their ardent or fire-born (ignea) virtue is 
able to make them endure the aether, which is the source of fire, amid which 
they have taken their place among the stars." 

8 And admired) ver. 12-13. It has been suggested that Lucan had here 
in view a passage in the Eclogues of Virgil, E. v. 1. 56-7: " Candidus 
insuetum miratur limen Olympi, Sub pedibusqne videt nubes et sidera 
Daphnis." " The beauteous Daphnis admires, unusual sight, the threshold 
of Olympus, and sees beneath his feet the clouds and stars." 



B. DC. 17-35.] PHARSALIA. 339. 

seated himself in the hallowed bosom of Brutus ', and im- 
planted himself in the breast of the unconquered Cato. 
He, while the chances were undecided, and it remained in 
doubt, which one the civil wars were to make ruler of the 
world, had hated Magnus too, although he had gone as his 
follower in arms, hurried on by the auspices of his country 
and by the guidance of the Senate ; but after the disasters 
of Thessaly, then with all his heart he was a partisan of 
Pompey. 

His country, wanting a protector, he took into his aim pro- 
tection, the trembling limbs of the people he cherished once 
more, the swords thrown away he placed again in timid 
hands, and neither desiring rule, nor yet fearing to serve 
under another a , he waged the civil war. Nothing in arms 
did he do for the sake of self; after the death of Magnus 
it was entirely the party of libert} r ; and, lest victory should 
sweep this away scattered along the shores, with the rapid 
speed of Caesar, he sought the secret retreats of Corcyra :i , 
and in a thousand ships 4 earned off with him the fragments 
of the Emathian downfall. Who could have supposed that 
flying troops were speeding on in barks so numerous? 
Who, that conquered ships were crowding the seas ? 

1 In the hallowed losom of Brutus) ver. 17. Meaning that the soul of 
Pompey inspires Brutus to avenge his cause, by slaying Caesar. It is more 
than probable that Brutus was a weak and restless man, and merely joined 
the conspiracy against Caesar, because he was completely under the influence 
of Cassius. Gratitude alone should have prevented him from thus requiting 
the favours he had received from his benefactor ; but Lucan would probably 
have deemed gratitude too mean a virtue for a patriot and a hero. 

2 To serve under another) ver. 28. He did not hesitate to obey the com- 
mands of another, when the good of his country required it It has been 
suggested that "nee servire timens" means that he had no fear of becoming 
a slave, as he was determined to kill himself to avoid that necessity, a thing 
which it was always in his power to do. 

3 Secret retreats of Corcyra) ver. 32. When Pompey followed Caesar into 
the interior of Thessaly, he left Cato with some troops in the vicinity of 
Dyrrhachium. With these troops and the remnant of those who fled from 
Pharsalia, he passed over from the continent to the Island of Coreyra (now 
Corfu), near which Pompey's navy then lay, in order, if possible, to join 
Pompey. 

* And in a thousand thips) ver. 32. This is probably a hyperbolical 
mode of expression. Three hundred is more generally said to have been the 
number of the ships. 

z 2 



840 PHARSALIA. [B. ix. 36-48. 

Then does he repair to Dorian Malea 1 , and Tamarus 
open to the shades 2 , and next Cythera :1 ; and Crete vanishes, 
Boreas speeding on the barks; the waves moderating, he 
coasts along the Dictsean shores J . Then, Phycus, that 
dared' to shut its ports against the fleet, and that well 
deserved ruthless rapine, he burst into and sacked ; and 
thence, Palinurus, was he borne by the calm breezes along 
the deep to thy shores ; (for not only in the Ausonian 
seas 7 dost thou possess memorials ; Libya, also, testifies 
that her quiet ports were pleasing to the Phrygian pilot ;) 
when, spreading their sails afar upon the deep, some ships 
kept their minds hi suspense 8 , whether they were conveying 
partners in then: misfortunes, or whether foes. The con- 

1 To Dorian Malea) ver. 36. Malea, the promontory of Lnconia, is 
called " Dorian," from the Dorians being supposed to have colonized Laconia. 

2 Tcenarus open to the shades) ver. 36. He alludes to the cavern of 
Taenarus in Laconia, which was supposed to communicate with the Infernal 
Regions. See B. vi. 1. 648, and the Note to the passage. 

3 And next Cythera) ver. 37. Cythera was a mountainous island off the 
south-eastern coast of Laconia. It was colonized by the Phoenicians, who, 
at a very early period, introduced there the worship of Aphrodite or Venus, 
whence her epithet Cytheraea. According to some traditions she rose from 
the sea in the neighbourhood of this island. At the present day it is called 
Cerigo. 

4 The Dictcean shores) ver. 38. See B. ii. 1. 610, and the Note to the 
passage. 

6 Phycus, that dared) ver. 40. Phycus was a town on the coast of Cyre- 
naica, west of Apollonia, and north-west of Cyrene. It was the most northerly 
headland of eastern Libya, and the nearest point of land in Africa to the 
coast of Europe, the distance from Phycus to the Tsenarian promontory 
being 208 miles. The inhabitants having refused to receive Cato and his 
troops, he took and sacked the town. 

6 Palinunis, to thy shores) ver. 42. There was a Promontory on the 
coast of Cyrenaica, which, according to Ptolemy the Geographer, was called 
" Paliurus." It is not improbable that the Poet has mistaken the name and 
incorrectly represented it as being called Palinurus, after the pilot of JEneas 
of that name. 

7 In the Ausonian seas) ver. 42-3. On the coast of Italy in the Velian 
Gulf, near Naples, there was a Promontory called Palinurus : according to 
tradition it was so called, because Palinurus, the pilot of JEneas, was mur- 
dered there by the natives, or, according to Virgil, Jin. B. vi. 1. 366, he was 
drowned off that spot. 

* Kept their minds in suspense) ver. 46. They were at a loss to say 
whether the ships of Cornelia and Sextus, now on their way from Egypt, 
were those of friends or foes. 



B. ix. 48-75.] PHAR8ALIA. 341 

queror, so swiftly moving, made everything to be dreaded, 
and in no ship was he not helieved to be. But these barks 
were bearing grief and lamentation, and woes to move the 
tears of even the stern Cato. 

For after by entreaties Cornelia had in vain tried to detain 
the sailors and the flight of her step-son 1 , lest by chance, 
beaten back from the Pharian shores, the trunk might 
return to sea, and when the flames disclosed the pile with 
funeral rites unworthy of him, she exclaimed : 

" Have I, then, Fortune, proved unworthy to light the 
pile for my husband, and, stretched upon his cold limbs, 
to throw myself upon my spouse? To bum my hair 
torn out-? And to gather up the limbs of Magnus dis- 
persed upon the sea? To pour abundant tears into all 
his wounds ? To cover my garments with the bones and 
the heated embers :t , about to scatter in the Temples of 
the Gods whatever I might be allowed to take from the ex- 
tinguished pyre ? Without any honor of funereal rites is 
the pile to burn ; perhaps an Egyptian hand has performed 
this office repulsive to his shade 4 . O well did the ashes 
of the Crassi lie exposed ! By greater enmity of the Gods 
has the fire fallen to Pompey's lot. Shall there always be 
to me a like fatality in my woes ? Shall I never be allowed 
to provide a grave for my husband ? Shall I never lament 
over a filled urn ? What further need, sorrow, hast thou of 
tombs, or why require any instruments of grief? Dost thou 
not, unnatural one, retain Pompey throughout all thy breast? 
Does not his image dwell in thy inmost vitals ? Let one 
look for the ashes, who is destined long to survive. 

" Still, however, now does the fire that from afar shines 
with scanty light 5 , as it rises from the Pharian shore, pre- 

1 Of tier step-son) ver. 52. Sextus, the younger son of Pompey, by his 
wife Mucia. 

9 To burn my hair torn out) ver. 57. It was the custom for the female 
relatives of the deceased to lay locks of their hair upon the funeral pile. 

3 With the heated embers) ver. 60. See B. viii. 1. 843, and the Note to 
the passage. 

* Office repulsive to his shade) ver. 64. See B. viii. 1. 671-3. 

5 With scanty light) ver. 73. " Luce maligna." Literally, " With ma- 
lignant light." The question may be asked, how she could know that this 
was the funeral pile of Pompey 1 unless, indeed, we suppose the ship to 
have stood in very close to the shore. 



342 PHARSALIA. [. ix. 75-107. 

sent to me something, Magnus, of thee. Now lias the 
flame subsided, and the smoke that bears Pompey iiway 
vanishes at the rising of the sun, and, hateful to me, the 
winds spread the sails. Not now if any land conquered by 
Pompey were affording a triumph, would it be more dear to 
me, nor yet the chariot as it wears away the lofty Capitol ; 
Magnus as prosperous has vanished from my breast. Him 
do I wish for whom the Nile retains, and at remaining on 
the guilty land I do not complain ; the crime makes wel- 
come the sands. If I am believed at all, I wish not to leave 
the Pelusian shores. 

" Do thou, Sextus, try throughout the world the chances 
of war, and bear thy father's standards ; for Pompey left 
this charge to you his sons, entrusted to my care : 

' ' When the fated hour shall have doomed me to death, 
take up, O my sons, the civil war, and never, while on earth 
any one of my race shall remain, let opportunity be given 
to the Caesars to reign. Urge on even monarchies, even 
cities powerful in then* own liberty, by the fame of my name. 
This party, these arms, to you do I leave. He will find 
fleets whichever Pompey 1 shall launch upon the waves; 
and to no nations shall my heir not cause war ; only do 
you have feelings unsubdued and mindful of your lather's 
rights. Cato alone will it be right to obey, if he shall 
espouse the cause of liberty.' 

" Magnus, I have performed my trust to thee ; thy in- 
junctions I have complied with. Thy stratagem has taken 
effect 2 , and, deceived, I have survived, that I might not, 
breaking my faith, carry away the words entrusted to me. 
Now then, husband, through empty Chaos will I follow 
thee, through Tartarus, if any such there is : how long 
respited from death it is uncertain ; upon itself will I first 
wreak vengeance for my long-enduring life. It endured, 
Magnus, beholding thy wounds, not to take refuge in death ; 
smitten with blows in wailing it shall end, it shall flow 
forth in tears ; never shall I have to resort to the sword or 

1 \\7Tiichever Pompey) ver. 93. Whether Cneins or Sextus. 

2 Thy stratagem, hat taken effect) rer. 99. She means that Pomper's en- 
trusting her with this commission was a plan to deceive her, and to make her 
live on, contrary to her own inclination. 



B. ix. 107-133.] -PHAESALIA. 348 

the halter, or the headlong leap l through the empty realms 
of air. It is disgraceful, after thee not to be able to die of 
grief alone." 

When thus she had spoken, she covered her head with a 
mourning veil, and resolved to endure darkness, and lay 
hid in the recesses of the ship ; and, strictly embracing 
cruel grief, she enjoyed her tears, and cherished mourning 
for her husband. Not the billows moved her, and the 
eastern gales howling through the rigging, and the cries 
that rose in extreme peril ; and conceiving wishes opposed 
to the anxious sailors, composed for death she lay, and 
wished success to the storms. 

Cyprus with its foaming waves first receives the ship ; 
thence, the eastern gales, retaining possession of the deep, 
but now more moderate, impel them towards the Libyan 
settlements 2 , and the camp of Cato. Sad, as is his pre- 
saging mind amid much fear, Magnus from the shore 3 be- 
holds the companions of his father, his brother, too ; head- 
long is he then borne through the midst of the waves. 
" Say, brother, where is our father ; does the summit and 
head of the earth exist, or are we undone ? Has Magnus 
borne away the destinies of Rome to the shades ? " 

Thus he says ; him, on the other hand, his brother ad- 
dresses in such words as these : " O happy thott, whom fate 
has separated in other regions, and who dost only hear of 
this wickedness : brother, I have eyes guilty of looking on 
my father when dying. Not by the arms of Caesar did he fall, 
and so perish by a worthy author of his downfall ; under 
the impure king who owns the fields of Nile, relying on the 
Gods of hospitality, and his services so great to his pro- 
genitors 4 , he fell, the victim of the realm he had presented. 

1 Or tJte headlong leap) ver. 107. " She will not have occasion to resort 
to a violent death by hanging herself, or by the sword, or by throwing her- 
self from a precipice." 

s Towards the Libyan settlements) ver. 119. Having touched at Cyprus 
ghe proceeds towards Africa, and meets Cato off the coast of Cyrenaica. 

3 Magnus from the shore) ver. 121. Lucan now calls Cneius, the eldest son 
of Pompey, by the epithet " Magnus," " Great," which had been given by 
the Roman people to his father, and descended to his children. Sextus did 
not remain long in Africa, but repaired to Spain to levy troops there. 

* To his progenitors) ver. 132. Meaning the father of Ptolemy, whom he 
had been instrumental in restoring to his kingdom. 



844 PHARSALIA. [B. ix. 183-156. 

I myself beheld them wounding the breast of our noble 
sire , and not believing that the Pharian tyrant could pos- 
sibly commit so great a crime, I imagined that 1 already his 
father-in-law was standing on the shores of the Nile. 

" But me neither did the blood nor the wounds of our 
aged sire so much affect, as the head of the chieftain carried 
through the city, which we saw borne aloft on a javelin 
thrust through it ; the report is that this is saved for the 
eyes of the ruthless conqueror, and that the tyrant wishes 
to ensure belief in his guilt. But, whether Pharian dogs 
and greedy birds have torn the body in pieces, or whether 
a stealthy fire 3 which we saw consumed it, I am ignorant. 
Whatever injustice of fate has earned away these limbs, for 
these crimes do I forgive the Gods of heaven; as to the 
portion preserved do I lament." 

When Magnus heard such words as these, he did not 
pour forth his sorrow in groans and tears ; and inflamed 
with righteous affection he thus spoke : "Launch forth, ye 
sailors, the ships from the dry shore ; with its oars let the 
fleet cleave onward against the opposing gales ; come on, ye 
chieftains, with me ; never for civil war was there a reward 
so great, to inter the unburied ghost, to satiate Magnus with 
the blood of the effeminate tyrant. Shall I not sink the 
Pellrean towers, and the corpse of Alexander, torn from its 
shrine, hi the sluggish Mareotis 3 ? Dragged forth from the 
sepulchres of the pyramids, shall not Amasis 4 and the 

1 I imagined that) ver. 135. So Cornelia thought, B. viii. 1. 641. 

a Or wither a stealthy fire) ver. 142. He does not speak so positively as 
Cornelia did in her lamentations, as to the fire being that of the funeral pile 
of Pompey. 

3 In the sluggish Mareotis) ver. 1 54. Mareotis was a large lake in the 
north-west of Lower Egypt, separated from the Mediterranean by the narrow 
neck of land on which Alexandria stood, and supplied with water from the 
Nile by canals. It was probably of a sluggish and stagnant nature, and 
served as the port for the vessels that repaired to Alexandria. Its present 
name is Birket-Mariouth, or El-Kreit. 

4 Shall not Amasis) ver. 155. See B. viii. 1. 697. He probably refers 
to Amasis, a very ancient king of Egypt, whom Pliny mentions as having 
been buried in a pyramid which received its name from a figure of the 
Sphynx. There was a more modern king of the same name, who was buried 
at Sais, in the tomb which he himself had constructed in the temple of 
Athene or Minerva. His body was dragged from his tomb by order of 
Cambyses, and subjected to shameful indignities. 



B. ix. 156-181.] PHAKSALIA. 845 

other kings float for me upon the stream of the Nile ? For 
thee unburied, Magnus, let all the sepulchres pay the pe- 
nalty ; I will hurl forth Isis from her tomb, now a Divinity 
among the nations, and over the ashes of Magnus shall 
sacred Apis be slain. Osiris, too 1 , clad in linen, I will 
scatter among the crowd ; and, the Gods placed beneath, I 
will bum Pompey's head. This penalty shall the land pay 
to me; the fields I will leave deprived of cultivation, and 
no one shall there be for whom Nile shall increase ; and 
thou, my sire, shalt possess Egypt alone, the people and the 
Deities banished." 

He said, and was hurrying the fleet into the ruthless 
waves. But Cato restrained the praiseworthy resentment of 
the youth. 

In the meantime, the death of Magnus being heard of, 
the sky resounded, smitten by lamentations ; there was 
grief, too, wanting a parallel and known to no age, the people 
bewailing the death of a great man. But, still more, when, 
exhausted by tears, having her dishevelled locks stream- 
ing over her features, Cornelia was seen coming forth from 
the ship, did they again lament with redoubled blows 2 . 
As soon as she reached the shores of a friendly land, she 
collected the garments and the memorials of the ill-fated 
Magnus, and the spoils embossed with gold, which he had 
formerly worn, and the embroidered robes "', vestments 
thrice beheld 4 by supreme Jove, and she threw them into a 
funereal fire. To her thus sorrowing these were the ashes of 
Magnus. All feelings of affection followed her example, and 
throughout all the shore funeral piles arose, giving their 

1 Osiris, too) ver. 160. When Osiris had been torn to pieces by his 
brother Typhon, the story was that the fragments of the body were picked 
up by Isis and placed in a linen cloth, from which circumstance his statues 
were clothed in linen. The priests and devotees of both Isis and Osiris 
were also clothed in the same material. 

2 With redoubled blows) ver. 173. " Geminato verbere plangunt." This 
refers to the blows upon the breast by which the ancients (and especially 
females) were wont to denote violent paroxysms of grief. 

3 The embroidered robes) ver. 177. " Togae " embroidered with palms, 
the emblems of conquest, and worn by victorious generals when celebrating 
their triumphs. 

* Vestments thrice beheld) ver. 178. In allusion to his three triumphs. 
See B. vii. 1. 685, and the Note to the passage. The triumphant procession 
proceeded to the Temple of Jupiter Capitolinus. 



346 PHABSALIA. [B. ix. 181-198. 

fires to the Thessalian shades '. Tims when the Apulian 2 
is preparing to reproduce the grass on the plums oaten 
bare, and to renew the wintry herbage, does he warm die 
earth with fires, and together do both Garganus " and the 
fields of Vultur 4 and the pastures for oxen on warm Mu- 
tmus 5 shine. 

Still, not more pleasing did all that the common people 
dared to utter in censure of the Gods of heaven, and in 
which it rebuked the Deities as to Pompey, reach the ghost 
of Magnus, than did the -words of Cato, few, but coming 
from a breast replete with truth. 

" A citizen has perished," he said, " ranch inferior to our 
forefathers 6 in knowing moderation in his sway, but still, 
useful hi this age, which has had no respect 7 for justice, 
powerful, liberty still safe, and the only one who was a pri- 
vate man when the people were ready to be his slaves, and 
the ruler of the Senate, but of that atiii reigning. Nothing 
in right of war did he demand; whatever he wished i 
granted him he wished it to be possible for it to be refused 
him. Wealth unbounded did he possess, but more did he 

1 To the Thessalian shades) ver. 181. In imitation of the honorary pie 
which Cornelia erects and sets fire to in honor of Pompey, they erect funeral 
piles in honor of their friends who have fallen at Pharsalia. 

2 When, 'the Apulian) ver. 182-5. He refers to the custom among the 
husbandmen of Apulia of lighting fires throughout the fields, in order to 
renew the exhausted earth, and to destroy the old roots, thus leaving room 
for the young blade to spring up. 

3 Together do both Garganits) ver. 184. Garganus was a mountain and 
Promontory on the coast of Apulia, famous, according to Horace, for its forests 
of oak. It is still called Monte Gargano. 

4 Fields of Vultur) ver. 185. Vultur was a mountain near Venusia, 
dividing Apulia from Lucania. Horace mentions it as one of the haunts of 
his youthful days. From it the south-east wind was called Yulturnus by 
the Romans. 

5 On warm Matinus) ver. 185. Matinns was a mountain of Apulia, near 
Mount Garganug. As here mentioned, it was famous for the excellence of 
its pastures. 

" Inferior to our forefathers) ver. 190. " A good citizen, though far infe- 
rior to the Bruti, the Camilli, the Curii, the Decii, the Fabii, the Pabricii, the 
Cincinnati, the Catos, and the Scipios of former times." Cato was especially 
a " laudator temporis actL" 

7 Which has had no respect) Ter. 1 92. '' Cui " here, though considered 
by some to refer to Pompey, clearly relates to " aevum," " the age," of 
which Cato is complaining. 



JB. ix. 198-220.] PHAKSALIA. 347 

present to the public than what was retained ; the sword he 
took up, but he knew how to lay it down. Anns he pre- 
ferred to civil life * ; but, amid arms, he loved peace. 

" Authority assumed pleased the chieftain ; laid down, it 
pleased him. Chaste nets his household, and void of luxury, 
and never corrupted by the good fortune of its lord. A 
name illustrious and revered by nations, and one that has 
advantaged our City much. Long since, on Sulla and 
Marius being received 2 into the City, real confidence in 
liberty disappeared ; now, Pompey taken away from the 
State, even a feigned one perishes. No longer now will 
there be shame at holding kingly sway ; neither the colour 
of authority, nor yet any front of the Senate, will there be. 
O happy man, whom, when conquered, his last day came to 
meet, and to whom the Pharian villany presented a sword 
deserving to be sought ! Perhaps under the sway of his 
father-in-law he might have been able to live. To know 
how to die is the first blessing to man, but the next, to be 
compelled. To me, too, if by the Fates we fall into the 
power of another, Fortune, grant Juba to be such ; I do not 
beg not to be reserved for an enemy, so long as ' he reserves 
me, my head cut off." 

By these words more honor in his death accrued to the 
noble shade, than if the Roman Kostra had resounded with 
praises of the chieftain. 

In the meantime, the discord of the people in the camp 
creates murmurs, amd after the death of Magnus they are 
weary of the war, when Tarchondimotus 4 raises the standard 

1 Preferred to civil life) ver. 193. " Togse ; " literally, " to the toga," the 
garb of peace. 

2 Sulla and Marius "being received} ver. 204. " Receptis." He alludes 
to the returns of Sulla and Marius, at different periods after having re- 
covered from their defeats, which they celebrated with almost indiscriminate 
slaughter of their fellow-citizens. 

z So long as) ver. 214. He does not refuse to suffer the same treatment 
from Juba as Pompey did from the hands of Ptolemy. 

4 When Tarchondimotus) ver. 219. Tarchondimotus was the king of 
Cilicia, or perhaps more properly a chieftain of some portion of its piratical 
population. He fought on the side of Pompey, bat was afterwards pardoned 
by Caesar, and allowed to retain his dominions. After the death of Caesar 
he joined Cassius, and subsequently espoused the cause of Antony against 
Augustus. He was slain in a sea-fight in the year B.C. 31, while fighting 
under Sosius against M. Agrippa. 



848 PHAESALIA. [u. EC. 220-254. 

for leaving Cato. Following him to the edge of the shore, 
as he flies with his fleet hurrying off", Cato censures him in 
such words : " O Cilician, never reduced to peace, dost thou 
again go to thy rapine on the main ? Fortune has removed 
Magnus; now as a pirate thou art returning to the seas." 
Then he gazes upon all the men in groups and in commo- 
tion ; one of whom, disclosing his mind as to the flight, in 
such words addresses the chief: 

" Cato, grant us pardon, it was the love of Pompey, not of 
civil war, that moved us to arms, and through affection did 
we espouse a faction. He lies prostrate, whom the earth 
preferred to peace, and fallen is our cause ; allow us to re- 
visit our country's household Gods, and our deserted homes 
and dear children. For what end of the contest will there 
be, if neither Pharsalia nor Pompey shall be so ? The mo- 
ments of our lives have been wasted ; let death come upon 
us in our retreat; let our old age look forward to the flames 
its due. Civil warfare can hardly afford sepulchres to chief- 
tains. No barbarian sway awaits the conquered ; no cruel 
Fortune threatens me with an Armenian or a Scythian 
yoke ; I come beneath the rule of a citizen who wears the 
toga. 

"Whoever, while Magnus was living, was the second, the 
same to me shall be the first ; the highest honor shall be 
paid to the hallowed shade ; the ruler whom disaster forces 
me to have, I will have ; general, Magnus, none. Thee alone 
having followed to the war, next after thee will I follow des- 
tiny 1 , for it is neither right nor lawful for me to hope for 
success. All things are embraced by the fortune of Caesar ; 
victory has destroyed the Emathian sword. All confiding 
is closed against us in our wretchedness, and in the whole 
earth there is one alone, who is willing and is able to give 
safety to the conquered. Pompey slain, civil war is a crime, 
who living it was fidelity. If, Cato, thou wilt always obey 
the public laws, if always thy country, let us follow the 
standards which Casar, the Roman Consul, raises." 

Thus having said, he leaped on board ship, the cheers 
of the youths accompanying him. There was an end of the 
state of Rome, and in want of servitude all the multitude 

1 Will I follow destiny) ver. 243. " Fata ;" meaning " the fortune of war." 



B. ix. 254-281.] PHARSALIA. 349 

thronged upon the shore. These words burst forth from 
the hallowed breast of their leader : " Did you then, 
youths, wage the war with like hopes 1 , were you too for 
tyrants, and were you a Pompeian, not a Koman, army ? 
Because for no one's sway you toil, because for yourselves, 
not for your leaders, you live and die, because for no one 
you win the world, because now it is safe for you to con- 
quer, do you fly from war, and do you seek a yoke, your 
necks yet free, and know you not how to endure to be with- 
out a king ? 

" Now is the cause of danger worthy of men. Pompey 
might have made bad use of your blood; now to your 
country do your refuse your throats and swords, when, 
liberty is nigh ? Of three lords Fortune has now left but 
one 2 . Be ashamed of yourselves; more has the court of the 
Nile conferred upon the laws, the bows, too, of the Parthian 
soldiers. Away, O degenerate men, despise the gift and the 
arms of Ptolemy 3 . Who could suppose that your hands were 
guilty of any slaughter? He will believe that you readily 
turned your backs, he will believe that you were the first to 
fly from Emathian Philippi ". 

" Go in security ; in Caesar's judgment you have deserved 
life, subdued by no arms, in no siege. O base slaves, after 
the death of your first master you descend to his heir. Why 
do you not choose to merit more than life and pardon? 
Let the unhappy wife of Magnus, and the offspring of 
Metellus 3 be hurried off upon the waves ; carry off the 
Pompeys, surpass the gift of Ptolemy. My own head as 
well, whoever shall present to the hated tyrant, will give it 
for no small reward. This force will know that at the price 

1 With like hopes) ver. 250. " Pari voto." " With just the same party 
spirit as the followers of Caesar, and not influenced by any feelings of pa- 
triotism." 

3 Now left but one) ver. 266. " Caesar is the only tyrant now left you out 
of the Triumvirate, Crassus and Pompey being dead." 

3 Of Ptolemy) ver. 268. He means to say that the death of Pompey 
has at least procured them a greater share of liberty, and ironically calls it 
" munus," the " gift " of Ptolemy. 

4 From Emathian Philippi) ver. 271. As usual, he confounds the field 
of Pharsalia with that of Philippi. 

5 O/spring of Metellus) ver. 277. Cornelia, the daughter of Metellus Scipio. 



350 PHARSALI A. [B. ix. 281-299. 

of my life it has well followed my standards. Come oa, 
then, and in one vast slaughter earn your deserts ; cowardly 
treason only is flight." 

He thus said, and all the ships did he recall from the 
midst of the sea, no otherwise than as when the swarms 
together leave the teeming wax, and, forgetful of the coml>>, 
mingle not their wings 1 in clusters, but each one takes tli-^lit 
for itself, nor now slothmlly tastes the bitter thyme; ;he 
sound of the Phrygian brass'- censures tfwm; astounded, 
they cease their flight, and seek again the pursuits of their 
flower-gathering labours, and their fondness for the scat- 
tered honey ; freed from care, glad is the shepherd OTI the 
grass of Hybla 3 , that he has preserved the wealth of his 
cottage : thus by the words of Cato was patience recom- 
mended to the men in a righteous warfare. 

And now by the movements of war, and by a continuance 
of laboui's he determines to exercise their minds, not tun-lit 
to endure repose. First, the soldiers are wearied on the 
sands of the sea-shore ; at the walls and fortifications 4 of 
Gyrene 5 is their next labour; excluded, by no wrath does 
he avenge himself; and the sole vengeance of Cato upon 

1 Mingle not their wings) ver. 286. It is more generally supposed that 
he alludes here to the bees flying in thick swarms together, and not to 
their hanging in clusters, the one fastened to the other, as described in 
Virgil's Georgics, B. iv. 1. 558, although at first sight the passage seems to 
have that meaning. 

2 Sound of Ike Phrygian brass) ver. 288. Cymbals were originally used 
by the Phrygians in the worship of the Goddess Cybele. He alludes to the 
calling the bees together by the noise of the cymbals. Virgil has a similar 
passage in the Georgics, B. iv. 1. 64, where, speaking of bees, he says, 
" Tinnitusque cie, et Mali-is quate cymbala circum." " And make a tinkling 
noise, and shake the cymbals of the Mother round about" 

a On, the grass of Hybla) ver. 291. Hybla wag a mountain of Sicily 
famed for its honey. There were three placet in that island thus named, 
Hybla Major, Minor, and Heraea. 

4 And fortifications) TOT. 297. Cato really did not take the city of 
Cyrene, as the inhabitants voluntarily opened their gates to him, when they 
had refused to do so for Labienus, an adherent of Pompey. 

* Of Cyrene) ver. 297. Cyrene was the chief city of Cyrenaica. It 
stood about eight miles from the sea, on an eminence 1800 feet above the 
sea, in the midst of moat picturesque scenery. Its harbour was Apollonia, 
and its ruins are still very extensive. Cyrene is the scene of the lindens, 
perhaps the most interesting of all the plays of Plautus. 



B. ix. 299-324] PHRASALIA. 351 

the conquered is the having conquered them. Thence does 
it please him to repair to the realms of Juba 1 , adjoining to 
the Moors ; but nature forbids a passage by the Syrtes * lying 
between; a dauntless valour trusts that these even will 
give way to it. Either nature, when she gave its first figure 
to the world, left the Syrtes in a doubtful position between 
sea and land (for neither did the land subside entirely in 
order that it might receive the waters of the deep, nor did 
it protect itself from the sea ; but a tract lay impassable, by 
reason of the ambiguous nature of the place; the seas are 
broken by shoals, and the land is torn away by the deep, 
and the waves intervening, resoomd behind many a shallow. 
Thus did nature heedlessly forsake it, and she wrought for 
no use this portion of herself) ; or else the Syrtis once was 
more full of the deep ocean, and was entirely deluged with 
icaters ; but the scorching sun :i , feeding his light with the 
sea, drew up the adjacent waters of the burnt-up zone ; and 
now, the sea still contends with Phoebus as he dries it up. 
At a future day, when destroying time shall have enougli 
applied the rays, the Syrtis will be dry land; for now shallow 
water floats above, and the waves are failing, destined far 
and wide to come to an end. 

When first all the force of the fleet impelled the sea 
urged by its oars, the south wind, black with showers, roared, 
raging throughout his realms 4 ; with a whirlwind he defends 
the deep invaded by the fleets, and far from the Syrtes he 
drives the billows, and dashes the sea upon the extending 
shores. Then, the sails of some which he finds extended on 

1 Realms of Juba) ver. 301. He heard that Scipio and Atius Varus had 
repaired to the court of Juba, king of Numidia, and was anxious to join 
them. 

2 By the Syrtes) -wsr. 802. The Syrtis Major, or Greater Syrtis, is the one 
here alluded to, lying between Cyrenaica and the river Cinypa. Its situation 
is exactly opposite to the mouth of the Adriatic Sea, between Sicily and 
Peloponnesus. Its depth is about 110 miles, and its width between the 
Promontories, anciently called Cephalae and Boreum, about 230 miles. The 
great desert through which Cato marched comes down close to its shores, 
forming a sandy and desolate coast. 

3 But the scorching sun) ver. 313. Literally, " Titan," an epithet of tha 
sun, as, according to some accounts, being the offspring of the Titans Hype- 
rion and Thia, or Euryphaessa. 

4 Tlirovghout his realms) ver. 321. The regions particularly exposed to 
its influence, and whence it was supposed to take its rise. 



352 PHARSALIA. [B. ix. 324-350. 

the upright masts, he tears away from the mariners ; and 
the ropes having vainly attempted to deny the canvas to 
the southern gales, they surpass the length of the ship, and 
beyond the prow swells the bellying sail. If any one with 
foresight has fastened beneath all the cloth to the topmost 
yard, he, too, with bared rigging is driven out of his course. 

Better was the lot of the fleet which happened upon deep 
waves, and was tossed by a steady sea. Whatever xlt ///.* 
lightened by their masts cut down avoided the raging blast, 
the tide at liberty bore these on, rolling them in a contrary 
direction to the winds, and victorious drove them against the 
struggling south wind. Some barks do the shallows forsake, 
and the earth broken in upon by the deep strikes them ; 
and exposed to a doubtful fate, one part of the ship rests on 
land, the other part is poised in the waves. Then still more 
is the sea dashed upon the quicksands, and the earth rages 
rising to meet it hi its path; although repelled by the 
south wind, still full oft the wave masters not the hills of 
sand. There stands aloft upon the surface of the main afar 
from all the fields, untouched by the water, a heap of now 
dry sand ; the wretched sailors stand confounded, and the 
ship run on land they behold no shore. 

Thus does the sea intercept a part ; a greater portion of 
the ships obey the rudder and the helm ; safe in flight, and 
having obtained pilots well acquainted with the spot, un- 
hu*rt it arrives at the stagnant swamps of Triton *. This, 
as the report is, the God loves, whom throughout all the 
shore the ocean hears, as he raises his murmurs on his 
windy shell 2 ; this does Pallas :t love as well, who, springing 

' Stagnant swamps of Triton) ver. 347. This waa probably a place at 
the mouth of the river Triton, or Tritonis, which was supposed to flow from 
Lake Tritonis, in the interior of the country, which is thought to have been 
the great Salt Lake in the south of Tunis, now called 1 Sibkah. As it has 
now no opening to the sea, the river, if ever it existed, must have been long 
since choked up by the sands. 

2 On his windy shell) ver. 349. The sea-God Triton, the son of Neptune 
and Amphritite, or Celaeno. It was his office to blow his trumpet, made of 
a conch shell, at the command of his father, in order to soothe the restless- 
ness of the sea. 

3 This does Pallas) ver. 350. Pallas, or Minerra, was said to have re- 
ceived her surname Trito, or Tritogeneia, from this spot, where she was also 
said to have been born. According to other versions, she had that name 
from the river Triton, in the vicinity of Alalcomenas, in Bceotia, where she 



B. ix. 350-364.] PHARSALIA. 353 

from her father's head touched Libya first of all lands (for 
nearest is it to heaven, as the heat itself proves 1 ), and be- 
held her features 2 in the quiet water of the pool, and on 
the margin set her feet, and named herself Tritonis from 
the beloved waves. 

Near to which does Lethon :! , silent river, flow along; 
bringing obliviousness, as is the report, from the streams of 
hell ; and, once the care of the sleepless dragon, the poor 
garden of the Hesperides 4 , spoiled of its boughs. Spiteful 
the man, who robs old times of their credit, and who sum- 
mons poets to the truth. There was a golden wood, and 
branches weighed down with riches and with yellow fruit ; 
a virgin troop \ too, were the guardians of the shining 
grove, and a serpent with its eyes never condemned to 
sleep, entwining around the boughs bending with shining 

was worshipped, and by some was said to have been born. Grammarians 
derive the name from an ancient word, T^ITU, signifying " the head," in allu- 
sion to the story of her having sprung from the head of her father Jupiter. 

1 As the heat itself proves) ver. 352. This is a very good instance of what 
we may call a non sequitur. 

2 Beheld her features) ver. 353. The modest Minerva was especially 
represented by the ancients as repudiating the use of the mirror, and as 
viewing herself solely in the stream. So in the Fasti of Ovid, where she is 
describing the invention of the pipe, she is represented as saying (B. vi. 
1. 700), " The melody pleased me ; but in the clear waters that reflected 
my face, I saw the swelling out of my cheeks." 

8 Near to which does Lethon) ver. 355. Lucan is probably mistaken here 
in his geography, as Lethe was generally said to be a river in Spain, called 
also Limaea, which flowed into the Atlantic Ocean. Some, however, assert 
that Lethe was a different river from the one, which the Poet here calls 
" Lethos," and which is said to have flowed past a town called Berenice, 
near the Syrtis. 

4 Garden of the Hesperides) ver. 358. In the earliest versions of the 
story of the Hesperides, or guardians of the Golden apples, these nymphs 
are described as living on the river Oceanus, in the extreme west ; but the 
later poets and geographers mention other parts of Libya as their locality, 
such as the vicinity of Gyrene (as in the present instance), Mount Atlas, or 
the islands on the western coast of Africa. It was one of the labours of 
Hercules to obtain possession for Eurystheus of these golden apples, which 
were said to be guarded by a sleepless dragon. 

* A virgin troop) ver. 362. Some accounts mention three as the number 
of the Hesperides, .ZEgle, Arethusa, andHesperia ; others four, ^Egle, Cytheia, 
Hestia, and Arethusa ; while other accounts make seven to have been their 
number. They are called in poetic story the daughters of Night, or of Ere- 
bus, or of Phorcys and Ceto, or of Atlas and Hesperia, or of Hesperus, or 
of Zeus and Themis. 

A A 



354 PHARSAL1A. [a ix. 364-389. 

metal. Alcidcs took away the prize from the trees ; and, 
allowing the branches to be valueless without their load, 
brought back the shining apples to the tyran