aleator classicus

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Statius, Thebaid 2.489-495

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A big group of Eteocles’ men ambush Tydeus at night, which is definitely Just Not Cricket.

o caeca nocentum
consilia! o semper timidum scelus! exit in unum
plebs ferro iurata caput. ceu castra subire
apparet aut celsum crebri arietis ictibus urbis
inclinare latus: densi sic agmine facto
quinquaginta altis funduntur in ordine portis.
macte animi, tantis dignus qui crederis armis!

O blind counsels of the guilty! O ever-cowardly crime! The common folk, sworn by the sword, go out against a single man. It is as though they are stealing upon a camp, or bringing down the lofty flank of a city with blows from a solid battering-ram: in the same way do fifty men in a close-packed column pour through the high gates in order. Much respect to your courage, Tydeus – you who are believed worthy of such troops!

Tydeus manages to kill 49 of the 50 men though!

Written by aleatorclassicus

October 1, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Posted in Statius

Statius, Achilleid 2.1-4

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Sunrise, epic-style.

exuit implicitum tenebris umentibus orbem
Oceano prolata dies, genitorque coruscae
lucis adhuc hebetem vicina nocte levabat
et nondum excusso rorantem lampada ponto.

Day, brought forth from Ocean, drew the world out from the moist darkness that enveloped it, and the father of the flashing light lifted up his torch which was yet dull with the neighbouring night and dripping with sea it had not yet shaken off.

Written by aleatorclassicus

May 25, 2012 at 12:00 PM

Posted in Statius