Satire, thus freed from action, and formed into a poem, became a favorite pursuit, and was cultivated by several writers of eminence. In imitation of his model, Ennius confined himself to no particular species of verse, nor indeed of language, for he mingled Greek expressions with his Latin at pleasure. It is solely with a reference to this new attempt that Horace and Quintilian are to be understood, when they claim for the Romans the invention  of this kind of poetry; [Pg xvi] and certainly they had opportunities of judging which we have not, for little of Ennius, and nothing of the old Satire, remains.
It is not necessary to pursue the history of Satire farther in this place, or to speak of another species of it, the Varronian, or, as Varro himself called it, the Menippean, which branched out from the former, and was a medley of prose and verse; it will be a more pleasing, as well as a more useful employ, to enter a little into what Dryden, I know not for what reason, calls the most difficult part of his undertaking—"a comparative view of the Satirists;" not certainly with the design of depressing one at the expense of another for, though I have translated Juvenal, I have no quarrel with Horace and Persius , but for the purpose of pointing out the characteristic excellencies and defects of them all.
To do this the more [Pg xvii] effectually, it will be previously necessary to take a cursory view of the times in which their respective works were produced. Lucilius , to whom Horace, forgetting what he had said in another place, attributes the invention of Satire, flourished in the interval between the siege of Carthage and the defeat of the Cimbri and Teutons, by Marius. He lived therefore in an age in which the struggle between the old and new manners, though daily becoming more equal, or rather inclining to the worse side, was still far from being decided.
The freedom of speaking and writing was yet unchecked by fear, or by any law more precise than that which, as has been already mentioned, was introduced to restrain the coarse ebullitions of rustic malignity. Hence that boldness of satirizing the vicious by name, which startled Horace, and on which Juvenal and Persius delight to felicitate him.
Too little remains of Lucilius, to enable us to judge of his manner: his style seems, however, to bear fewer marks of delicacy than of strength, and his strictures appear harsh and violent. With all this, he must have been an extraordinary man; since Horace, who is evidently hurt by his reputation, can say nothing worse of his compositions than that they are careless and hasty, and that if he had lived at a more refined period, he would have partaken of the general amelioration. I do not remember to have heard it observed, but I suspect that there was something of political spleen in the excessive popularity of Lucilius under Augustus, and something of courtly complacency in the attempt of Horace to counteract it.
Augustus enlarged the law of the twelve tables respecting libels; and the people, who found themselves thus abridged of the liberty of satirizing the great by name, might not improbably seek to avenge themselves by an overstrained attachment to the works of a man who, living, as they would insinuate, in better times, practiced without fear, what he enjoyed without restraint. The space between Horace and his predecessor, was a dreadful interval "filled up with horror all, and big with death. Augustus, whose sword was yet reeking with the best blood of the state, now that submission left him no excuse for farther cruelty, was desirous of enjoying in tranquillity the fruits of his guilt.
He displayed, therefore, a magnificence hitherto unknown; and his example, which was followed by his ministers, quickly spread among the people, who were not very unwilling to exchange the agitation and terror of successive proscriptions, for the security and quiet of undisputed despotism. Tiberius had other views, and other methods of accomplishing them. He did not indeed put an actual stop to the elegant institutions of his predecessor, but he surveyed them with silent contempt, and they rapidly degenerated.
The race of informers multiplied with dreadful celerity; and danger, which could only be averted by complying with a caprice not always easy to discover, created an abject disposition, fitted for the reception of the grossest vices, and eminently favorable to the designs of the emperor; which were to procure, by universal depravation, that submission which Augustus sought to obtain by the blandishments of luxury and the arts. From this gloomy and suspicious tyrant, the empire was transferred to a profligate madman. To the vices of his predecessors, Nero added a frivolity which rendered his reign at once odious and contemptible.
Depravity could reach no farther, but misery might yet be extended. This was fully experienced through the turbulent and murderous usurpations of Galba, Otho, and Vitellius; [Pg xix] when the accession of Vespasian and Titus gave the groaning world a temporary respite. To these succeeded Domitian, whose crimes form the subject of many a melancholy page in the ensuing work, and need not therefore be dwelt on here.
Under him, every trace of ancient manners was obliterated; liberty was unknown, law openly trampled upon, and, while the national rites were either neglected or contemned, a base and blind superstition took possession of the enfeebled and distempered mind. Better times followed. Nerva, and Trajan, and Hadrian, and the Antonines, restored the Romans to safety and tranquillity; but they could do no more; liberty and virtue were gone forever; and after a short period of comparative happiness, which they scarcely appear to have deserved, and which brought with it no amelioration of mind, no return of the ancient modesty and frugality, they were finally resigned to destruction.
I now proceed to the "comparative view" of which I have already spoken: as the subject has been so often treated, little of novelty can be expected from it; to read, compare, and judge, is almost all that remains. Horace , who was gay, and lively, and gentle, and affectionate, seems fitted for the period in which he wrote. He had seen the worst times of the republic, and might therefore, with no great suspicion of his integrity, be allowed to acquiesce in the infant monarchy, which brought with it stability, peace, and pleasure. How he reconciled himself to his political tergiversation it is useless to inquire.
If he celebrates the master of the world, it is not until he is asked by him whether he is ashamed that posterity should know them to be friends; and he declines a post, which few of his detractors have merit to deserve, or virtue to refuse. His choice of privacy, however, was in some measure constitutional; for he had an easiness of temper which bordered on indolence; hence he never rises to the dignity of a decided character. Zeno and Epicurus share his homage and undergo his ridicule by turns: he passes without difficulty from one school to another, and he thinks it a sufficient excuse for his versatility, that he continues, amid every change, the zealous defender of virtue.
Virtue, however, abstractedly considered, has few obligations to his zeal. But though, as an ethical writer, Horace has not many claims to the esteem of posterity; as a critic, he is entitled to all our veneration. Such is the soundness of his judgment, the correctness of his taste, and the extent and variety of his knowledge, that a body of criticism might be selected from his works, more perfect in its kind than any thing which antiquity has bequeathed us.
As he had little warmth of temper, he reproves his contemporaries without harshness. He is content to "dwell in decencies," and, like Pope's courtly dean, "never mentions hell to ears polite. Horace "raised no blush" at least Persius does not insinuate any such thing , and certainly "made no desperate passes. To raise a laugh at vice, however supposing it feasible , is not the legitimate office of Satire, which is to hold up the vicious, as objects of reprobation and scorn, for the example of others, who may be deterred by their sufferings.
But it is time to be explicit. To laugh even at fools is superfluous; if they understand you, they will join in the merriment; but more commonly, they will sit with vacant unconcern, and gaze at their own pictures: to laugh at the vicious, is to encourage them; for there is in such men a willfulness of disposition, which prompts them to bear up against shame, and to show how little they regard slight reproof, by becoming more audacious in guilt. Goodness, of which the characteristic is modesty, may, I fear, be shamed; but vice, like folly, to be restrained, must be overawed.
Labeo, says Hall, with great energy and beauty—. Persius , who borrowed so much of Horace's language, has little of his manner. The immediate object of his imitation seems to be Lucilius; and if he lashes vice with less severity than his great prototype, the cause must not be sought in any desire to spare what he so evidently condemned. But he was thrown "on evil times;" he was, besides, of a rank distinguished enough to make his freedom dangerous, and of an age when life had yet lost little of its novelty; to write, [Pg xxii] therefore, even as he has written, proves him to be a person of very singular courage and virtue.
In the interval between Horace and Persius, despotism had changed its nature: the chains which the policy of Augustus concealed in flowers, were now displayed in all their hideousness. The arts were neglected, literature of every kind discouraged or disgraced, and terror and suspicion substituted in the place of the former ease and security. Stoicism, which Cicero accuses of having infected poetry, even in his days, and of which the professors, as Quintilian observes, always disregarded the graces and elegancies of composition, spread with amazing rapidity. Satire was not his first pursuit; indeed, he seems to have somewhat mistaken his talents when he applied to it.
The true end of this species of writing, as Dusaulx justly says, is the improvement of society; but for this, much knowledge of mankind "quicquid agunt homines" is previously necessary. Whoever is deficient in that, may be an excellent moral and philosophical poet; but can not, with propriety, lay claim to the honors of a satirist.
And Persius was moral and philosophical in a high degree: he was also a poet of no mean order. But while he grew pale over the page of Zeno, and Cleanthes, and Chrysippus; while he imbibed, with all the ardor of a youthful mind, the paradoxes of those great masters, together with their principles, the foundations of civil society were crumbling around him, and soliciting his attention in vain. To judge from what he has left us, it might almost be affirmed that he was a stranger in his own country. The degradation of Rome was now complete; yet he felt, at least he expresses, no indignation at the means by which it was effected: a sanguinary buffoon was [Pg xxiii] lording it over the prostrate world; yet he continued to waste his most elaborate efforts on the miserable pretensions of pedants in prose and verse!
If this savor of the impassibility of Stoicism, it is entitled to no great praise on the score of outraged humanity, which has stronger claims on a well-regulated mind, than criticism, or even philosophy. Dryden gives that praise to the dogmas of Persius, which he denies to his poetry. The charge of obscurity has been urged against him with more justice; though this, perhaps, is not so great as it is usually represented. Casaubon could, without question, have defended him more successfully than he has done; but he was overawed by the brutal violence of the elder Scaliger; for I can scarcely persuade myself that he really believed this obscurity to be owing to "the fear of Nero, or the advice of Cornutus.
Generally speaking, however, it springs from a too frequent use of tropes, approaching in almost every instance to a catachresis, an anxiety of compression, and a quick and unexpected transition from one overstrained figure to another. After all, with the exception of the sixth Satire, which, from its abruptness, does not appear to have received the author's last touches, I do not think there is much to confound an attentive reader: some acquaintance, indeed, with the porch "braccatis illita Medis," is previously necessary.
His life may be contemplated with unabated pleasure: the virtue he recommends, he practiced in the fullest extent; and at an age when few have acquired a determinate character, he left behind him an established reputation for genius, learning, and worth. Juvenal wrote at a period still more detestable than that of Persius. Domitian, who now governed the empire, seems to have inherited the bad qualities of all his predecessors. Juvenal, like Persius, professes to follow Lucilius; but what was in one a simple attempt, is in the other a real imitation, of his manner.
Dusaulx, who is somewhat prejudiced against Horace, does ample justice to Juvenal. There is great force in what he says; and, as I do not know that it ever appeared in English, I shall take the liberty of laying a part of it before the reader, at the hazard of a few repetitions. The cruel but politic Octavius scattered flowers over the paths he was secretly tracing toward despotism: the arts of Greece, transplanted to the Capitol, flourished beneath his auspices; and the remembrance of so many civil dissensions, succeeding each other with increasing rapidity, excited a degree of reverence for the author of this unprecedented tranquillity.
The Romans felicitated themselves [Pg xxv] at not lying down, as before, with an apprehension of finding themselves included, when they awoke, in the list of proscription: and neglected, amid the amusements of the circus and the theatre, those civil rights of which their fathers had been so jealous. A better courtier than a soldier, he clearly saw how far the refinement, the graces, and the cultivated state of his genius qualities not much considered or regarded till his time  , were capable of advancing him without any extraordinary effort.
It is on this account, that, of all his contemporaries, he has celebrated none but the friends of his master, or, at least, those whom he could praise without fear of compromising his favor. His great aim was to alarm the vicious, and, if possible, to exterminate vice, which had, as it were, acquired a legal establishment.
A noble enterprise! Despotism was consecrated by the senate; liberty, of which a few slaves were still sensible, was nothing but an unmeaning word for the rest, which, unmeaning as it was, they did not dare to pronounce in public. Men of rank were declared enemies to the state for having praised their equals; historians were condemned to the cross, philosophy was proscribed, and its professors banished. Individuals felt only for their own danger, which they too often averted by accusing others; and there were instances of children who denounced their own parents, and appeared as witnesses against them!
It was not possible to weep for the proscribed, for tears themselves became the object of proscription; and when the tyrant of the day had condemned the accused to banishment or death, the senate decreed that he should be thanked for it, as for an act of singular favor. It is no longer a poet like Horace, fickle, pliant, and fortified with that indifference so falsely called philosophical, who amused himself with bantering vice, or, at most, with upbraiding a few errors of little consequence, in a style, which, scarcely raised above the language of conversation, flowed as indolence and pleasure directed; but a stern and incorruptible censor, an inflamed and impetuous poet, who sometimes rises with his subject to the noblest heights of tragedy.
From this declamatory applause, which even La Harpe allows to be worthy of the translator of Juvenal, the most rigid censor of our author can not detract much; nor can much perhaps be added to it by his warmest admirer. I could, indeed, have wished that he had not exalted him at the expense of Horace; but something must be allowed for the partiality of long acquaintance; and Casaubon, when he preferred Persius, with whom he had taken great, and indeed successful pains, to Horace and Juvenal, sufficiently exposed, while he tacitly accounted for, the prejudices of commentators and translators.
With respect to Horace, if he falls beneath Juvenal and who does not? I could pursue the parallel through a thousand ramifications, but the reader who does me the honor to peruse the following sheets, will see that I have incidentally touched upon some of them in the notes: and, indeed, I preferred scattering my observations through the work, as they arose from the subject, to bringing them together in this place; where they must evidently have lost something of their pertinency, without much certainty of gaining in their effect.
Juvenal is accused of being too sparing of praise. But are his critics well assured that praise from Juvenal could be accepted with safety? I do not know that a private station was "the post of honor" in those days; it was, however, that of security. Martial, Statius, V. Flaccus, and other parasites of Domitian, might indeed venture to celebrate their friends, who were also those of the emperor. Juvenal's, it is probable, were of another kind; and he might have been influenced no less by humanity than prudence, in the sacred silence which he has observed respecting them.
He is also charged with being too rhetorical in his language. The critics have discovered that he practiced at the bar, and they will therefore have it that his Satires smack of his pro [Pg xxviii] fession, "redolent declamatorem. The enumeration of deities in the thirteenth Satire is well defended by Rigaltius, who admits, at the same time, that if the author had inserted it any where but in a Satire, he should have accounted him a babbler; "faterer Juv.
The other passages adduced in support of this charge, are either metaphorical exaggerations, or long traits of indirect Satire, of which Juvenal was as great a master as Horace. I do not say that these are interesting to us; but they were eminently so to those for whom they were written; and by their pertinency at the time, should they, by every rule of fair criticism, be estimated. The version of such passages is one of the miseries of translation. I have also heard it objected to Juvenal, that there is in many of his Satires a want of arrangement; this is particularly observed of the sixth and tenth.
I scarcely know what to reply to this. Those who are inclined to object, would not be better satisfied, perhaps, if the form of both were changed; for I suspect that there is no natural gradation in the innumerable passions which agitate the human breast. Some must precede, and others follow; but the order of march is not, nor ever was, invariable. While I acquit him of this, however, I readily acknowledge a want of care in many places, unless it be rather attributable to a want of taste. On some occasions, too, when he changed or enlarged his first sketch, [Pg xxix] he forgot to strike out the unnecessary verses: to this are owing the repetitions to be found in his longer works, as well as the transpositions, which have so often perplexed the critics and translators.
Now I am upon this subject, I must not pass over a slovenliness in some of his lines, for which he has been justly reproached by Jortin and others, as it would have cost him no great pains to improve them. Why he should voluntarily debase his poetry, it is difficult to say: if he thought that he was imitating Horace in his laxity, his judgment must suffer considerably. The verses of Horace are indeed akin to prose; but as he seldom rises, he has the art of making his low flights, in which all his motions are easy and graceful, appear the effect of choice.
Juvenal was qualified to "sit where he dared not soar. I have observed in the course of the translation, that he embraced no sect with warmth. In a man of such lively passions, the retention with which he speaks of them all, is to be admired. From his attachment to the writings of Seneca, I should incline to think that he leaned toward Stoicism; his predilection for the school, however, was not very strong: perhaps it is to be wished that he had entered a little more deeply into it, as he seems not to have those distinct ideas of the nature of virtue and vice, which were entertained by many of the ancient philosophers, and indeed, by his immediate predecessor, Persius.
As a general champion for virtue, he is commonly successful, but he sometimes misses his aim; and, in more than one instance, confounds the nature of the several vices in his mode of attacking them: he confounds too the very essence of virtue, which, in his hands, has often "no local habitation and name," but varies with the ever-varying passions and caprices of mankind.
I know not whether it be worth while to add, that he is accused of holding a different language at different times respecting the gods, since in this he differs little from the Greek and Roman poets in general; who, as often as they introduce their divinities, state, as Juvenal does, the mythological circumstances coupled with their names, without regard to the existing system of physic or [Pg xxx] morals.
When they speak from themselves, indeed, they give us exalted sentiments of virtue and sound philosophy; when they indulge in poetic recollections, they present us with the fables of antiquity. Hence the gods are alternately, and as the subject requires, venerable or contemptible; and this could not but happen through the want of some acknowledged religious standard, to which all might with confidence refer. I come now to a more serious charge against Juvenal, that of indecency.
To hear the clamor raised against him, it might be supposed, by one unacquainted with the times, that he was the only indelicate writer of his age and country. Yet Horace and Persius wrote with equal grossness: yet the rigid Stoicism of Seneca did not deter him from the use of expressions, which Juvenal perhaps would have rejected: yet the courtly Pliny poured out gratuitous indecencies in his frigid hendecasyllables, which he attempts to justify by the example of a writer to whose freedom the licentiousness of Juvenal is purity!
It seems as if there was something of pique in the singular severity with which he is censured. His pure and sublime morality operates as a tacit reproach on the generality of mankind, who seek to indemnify themselves by questioning the sanctity which they can not but respect; and find a secret pleasure in persuading one another that "this dreaded satirist" was at heart no inveterate enemy to the licentiousness which he so vehemently reprehends.
When we consider the unnatural vices at which Juvenal directs his indignation, and reflect, at the same time, on the peculiar qualities of his mind, we shall not find much cause, perhaps, for wonder at the strength of his expressions. I should resign him in silence to the hatred of mankind, if his aim, like that of too many others, whose works are read with delight, had been to render vice amiable, to fling his seducing colors over impurity, and inflame the passions by meretricious hints at what is only innoxious when exposed in native deformity: but when I find that his views are to render depravity loathsome; that every thing which can alarm and disgust is directed at her in his terrible page, I forget the grossness of the execution in the excellence of the design; and pay my involuntary homage to that integrity, which fearlessly calling in strong description to the aid of virtue, attempts to purify the passions, at the hazard of wounding delicacy and offending [Pg xxxi] taste.
This is due to Juvenal: in justice to myself, let me add, that I could have been better pleased to have had no occasion to speak at all on the subject. Whether any considerations of this or a similar nature deterred our literati from turning these Satires into English, I can not say; but, though partial versions might be made, it was not until the beginning of the seventeenth century that a complete translation was thought of; when two men, of celebrity in their days, undertook it about the same time; these were Barten Holyday and Sir Robert Stapylton.
Who entered first upon the task, can not well be told. There appears somewhat of a querulousness on both sides; a jealousy that their versions had been communicated in manuscript to each other: Stapylton's, however, was first published, though that of Holyday seems to have been first finished. Of this ingenious man it is not easy to speak with too much respect. His learning, industry, judgment, and taste are every where conspicuous: nor is he without a very considerable portion of shrewdness to season his observations.
His poetry indeed, or rather his ill-measured prose, is intolerable; no human patience can toil through a single page of it;  but his notes will always be consulted with pleasure. His work has been of considerable use to the subsequent editors of Juvenal, both at home and abroad; and indeed, such is its general accuracy, that little excuse remains for any notorious deviation from the sense of the original.
Pesquisar este blog
Stapylton had equal industry, and more poetry; but he wanted his learning, judgment, and ingenuity. His notes, though numerous, are trite, and scarcely beyond the reach of a schoolboy. He is besides scandalously indecent on many occasions, where his excellent rival was innocently unfaithful, or silent. With these translations, such as they were, the public was satisfied until the end of the seventeenth century, when the necessity of something more poetical becoming apparent, the booksellers, as Johnson says, "proposed a new version to the [Pg xxxii] poets of that time, which was undertaken by Dryden, whose reputation was such, that no man was unwilling to serve the Muses under him.
Dryden's account of this translation is given with such candor, in the exquisite dedication which precedes it, that I shall lay it before the reader in his own words. Thus much may be said for us, that if we give not the whole sense of Juvenal, yet we give the most considerable part of it: we give it, in general, so clearly, that few notes are sufficient to make us intelligible: we make our author at least appear in a poetic dress.
We have actually made him more sounding, and more elegant, than he was before in English: and have endeavored to make him speak that kind of English, which he would have spoken had he lived in England, and had written to this age. If sometimes any of us and it is but seldom make him express the customs and manners of his native country rather than of Rome, it is, either when there was some kind of analogy betwixt their customs and ours, or when, to make him more easy to vulgar understandings, we gave him those manners which are familiar to us.
An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary - H
But I defend not this innovation, it is enough if I can excuse it. For to speak sincerely, the manners of nations and ages are not to be confounded. This is, surely, sufficiently modest. Johnson's description of it is somewhat more favorable: "The general character of this translation will be given, when it is said to preserve the wit, but to want the dignity, of the original. Dryden frequently degrades the author into a jester; bu [Pg xxxiii] t Juvenal has few moments of levity.
On the whole, there is nothing in this quotation to deter succeeding writers from attempting, at least, to supply the deficiencies of Dryden and his fellow-laborers; and, perhaps, I could point out several circumstances which might make it laudable, if not necessary: but this would be to trifle with the reader, who is already apprised that, as far as relates to myself, no motives but those of obedience determined me to the task for which I now solicit the indulgence of the public.
When I took up this author, I knew not of any other translator; nor was it until the scheme of publishing him was started, that I began to reflect seriously on the nature of what I had undertaken, to consider by what exertions I could render that useful which was originally meant to amuse, and justify, in some measure, the partiality of my benefactors. My first object was to become as familiar as possible with my author, of whom I collected every edition that my own interest, or that of my friends, could procure; together with such translations as I could discover either here or abroad; from a careful examination of all these, I formed the plan, to which, while I adapted my former labors, I anxiously strove to accommodate my succeeding ones.
Dryden has said, "if we give not the whole, yet we give the most considerable part of it. I had seen enough of castrated editions, to observe that little was gained by them on the score of propriety; since, when the author was reduced to half his bulk, at the expense of his spirit and design, sufficient remained to alarm the delicacy for which the sacrifice had been made. And indeed the age of Chaucer, like that of Juvenal, allowed of such liberties. Other times, other manners.
Many words were in common use with our ancestors, which raised no improper ideas, though they would not, and indeed could not, at this time be tolerated. With the Greeks and Romans it was still worse: their dress, which left many parts of the body exposed, gave a boldness to their language, which was not perhaps lessened by the infrequency of women at those social conversations, of which they now constitute the refinement and the delight.
Add to this that their mythology, and sacred rites, which took their rise in very remote periods, abounded in the undisguised phrases of a rude and simple age, and being religiously handed down from generation to generation, gave a currency to many terms, which offered no violence to modesty, though abstractedly considered by people of a different language and manners, they appear pregnant with turpitude and guilt.
When we observe this licentiousness for I should wrong many of the ancient writers to call it libertinism in the pages of their historians and philosophers, we may be pretty confident that it raised no blush on the cheek of their readers. Thus much may suffice for Juvenal: but shame and sorrow on the head of him who presumes to transfer his grossness into the vernacular tongues! Without pretending to his high motives, I have felt the influence of [Pg xxxv] his example, and in his apology must therefore hope to find my own.
Though the poet be given entire, I have endeavored to make him speak as he would probably have spoken if he had lived among us; when, refined with the age, he would have fulminated against impurity in terms, to which, though delicacy might disavow them, manly decency might listen without offense. I have said above, that "the whole of Juvenal" is here given; this, however, must be understood with a few restrictions. Where vice, of whatever nature, formed the immediate object of reprobation, it has not been spared in the translation; but I have sometimes taken the liberty of omitting an exceptionable line, when it had no apparent connection with the subject of the Satire.
Here are no allusions, covert or open, to the follies and vices of modern times; nor has the dignity of the original been prostituted, in a single instance, to the gratification of private spleen. I have attempted to follow, as far as I judged it feasible, the style of my author, which is more various than is usually supposed. It is not necessary to descend to particulars; but my meaning will be understood by those who carefully compare the original of the thirteenth and fourteenth Satires with the translation.
Two incomplete treatises on prophecy
In the twelfth, and in that alone, I have perhaps raised it a little; but it really appears so contemptible a performance in the doggerel of Dryden's coadjutor, that I thought somewhat more attention than ordinary was in justice due to it. I could have been sagacious and obscure on many occasions, with very little difficulty; but I strenuously combated every inclination to find out more than my author meant.
The general character of this translation, if I do not deceive myself, will be found to be plainness; and, indeed, the highest praise to which I aspire, is that of having left the original more intelligible to the English reader than I found it. On numbering the lines, I find that my translation contains a few less than Dryden's.
Had it been otherwise, I should [Pg xxxvi] not have thought an apology necessary, nor would it perhaps appear extraordinary, when it is considered that I have introduced an infinite number of circumstances from the text, which he thought himself justified in omitting; and that, with the trifling exceptions already mentioned, nothing has been passed; whereas he and his assistants overlooked whole sections, and sometimes very considerable ones.
Of the "borrowed learning of notes," which Dryden says he avoided as much as possible, I have amply availed myself. During the long period in which my thoughts were fixed on Juvenal, it was usual with me, whenever I found a passage that related to him, to impress it on my memory, or to note it down. These, on the revision of the work for publication, were added to such reflections as arose in my own mind, and arranged in the manner in which they now appear. I confess that this was not an unpleasant task to me, and I will venture to hope, that if my own suggestions fail to please, yet the frequent recurrence of some of the most striking and beautiful passages of ancient and modern poetry, history, etc.
The information insinuated into the mind by miscellaneous collections of this nature, is much greater than is usually imagined; and I have been frequently encouraged to proceed by recollecting the benefits which I formerly derived from casual notices scattered over the margin, or dropped at the bottom of a page. In this compilation, I proceeded on no regular plan, farther than considering what, if I had been a mere English reader, I should wish to have had explained: it is therefore extremely probable, as every rule of this nature must be imperfect, that I have frequently erred; have spoken where I should be silent and been prolix where I should be brief: on the whole, however, I chose to offend on the safer side; and to leave nothing [Pg xxxvii] unsaid, at the hazard of sometimes saying too much.
Tedious, perhaps, I may be; but, I trust, not dull; and with this negative commendation I must be satisfied. The passages produced are not always translated; but the English reader needs not for that be discouraged in proceeding, as he will frequently find sufficient in the context to give him a general idea of the meaning.
I have now said all that occurs to me on this subject: a more pleasing one remains. I can not, indeed, like Dryden, boast of my poetical coadjutors. No Congreves and Creeches have abridged, while they adorned, my labors; yet have I not been without assistance, and of the most valuable kind. Whoever is acquainted with the habits of intimacy in which I have lived from early youth with the Rev.
Ireland,  will not want to be informed of his share in the following pages. To those who are not, it is proper to say, that besides the passages in which he is introduced by name, every other part of the work has been submitted to his inspection. Nor would his affectionate anxiety for the reputation of his friend suffer any part of the translation to appear, without undergoing the strictest revision. His uncommon accuracy, judgment, and learning have been uniformly exerted on it, not less, I am confident, to the advantage of the reader, than to my own satisfaction.
C. Craig R. McNeil (Author of An Atlantean Triumvirate)
It will be seen that we sometimes differ in opinion; but as I usually distrust my own judgment in those cases, the decision is submitted to the reader. I have also to express my obligations to Abraham Moore, Esq. Nor must I overlook the friendly assistance of William Porden, Esq. A paper was put into my hand by Mr. George Nicol, the promoter of every literary work, from R.
Knight, Esq. As these did not fall within my plan, I can only here return him my thanks for a kindness as extraordinary as it was unexpected. But I have other and greater obligations to Mr. In conjunction with his son, Mr. William Nicol, he has watched the progress of this work through the press with unwearied solicitude.
During my occasional absences from town, the correction of it for which, indeed, the state of my eyes renders me at all times rather unfit rested almost solely on him; and it is but justice to add, that his habitual accuracy in this ungrateful employ is not the only quality to which I am bound to confess my obligations.
In this sense it was applied to the lanx or charger, in which the various productions of the soil were offered up to the gods; and thus came to be used for any miscellaneous collection in general. This deduction of the name may serve to explain, in some measure, the nature of the first Satires, which treated of various subjects, and were full of various matters: but enough on this trite topic. The old Satire, amid much coarse ribaldry, frequently attacked the follies and vices of the day. This could not be done by the comedy which superseded it, and which, by a strange perversity of taste, was never rendered national.
Its customs, manners, nay, its very plots, were Grecian; and scarcely more applicable to the Romans than to us. Here the matter would seem to be at once determined by a very competent judge. Strip the old Greek comedy of its action, and change the metre from Iambic to Heroic, and you have the Roman Satire! It is evident from this, that, unless two things be granted, first, that the actors in those ancient Satires were ignorant of the existence of the Greek comedy; and, secondly, that Ennius, who knew it well, passed it by for a ruder model; the Romans can have no pretensions to the honor they claim.
And even if this be granted, the honor appears to be scarcely worth the claiming; for the Greeks had not only Dramatic, but Lyric and Heroic Satire. These little pieces were made up of passages from various poems, which by slight alterations were humorously or satirically applied at will. The Satires of Ennius were probably little more; indeed, we have the express authority of Diomedes the grammarian for it. After speaking of Lucilius, whose writings he derives, with Horace, from the old comedy, he adds, "et olim carmen, quod ex variis poematibus constabat, satira vocabatur; quale scripserunt Pacuvius et Ennius.
It would scarcely be doing justice, however, to Ennius, to suppose that he did not surpass his models, for, to say the truth, the Greek Silli appear to have been no very extraordinary performances. A few short specimens of them may be seen in Diogenes Laertius, and a longer one, which has escaped the writers on this subject, in Dio Chrysostom. As this is, perhaps, the only Greek Satire extant, it may be regarded as a curiosity; and as such, for as a literary effort it is worth nothing, a short extract from it may not be uninteresting.
Sneering at the people of Alexandria, for their mad attachment to chariot-races, etc. Indeed, he was not happy; in the country he sighs for the town, in town for the country; and he is always restless, and straining after something which he never obtains. To float, like Aristippus, with the stream, is a bad recipe for felicity; there must be some fixed principle, by which the passions and desires may be regulated.
Though this may not be strictly true, it is yet probable that politics furnished but a small part of their conversation. That both Augustus and his minister were warmly attached to him, can not be denied; but then it was as to a plaything. Drummond has given this passage with equal elegance and truth:. Most of those, he says, distinguished for talents or rank, took refuge in the school of Zeno; not so much to learn in it how to live, as how to die.
I think, on the contrary, that this would rather have driven them into the arms of Epicurus. It would not be difficult to show, if this were the place for it, that the prevalency of Stoicism was due to the increase of profligacy, for which it furnished a convenient cloak. This, however, does not apply to Persius. What liberty was destroyed by the usurpation of Augustus? For more than half a century, Rome had been a prey to ambitious chiefs, while five or six civil wars, each more bloody than the other, had successively delivered up the franchises of the empire to the conqueror of the day.
The Gracchi first opened the career to ambition, and wanted nothing but the means of corruption, which the East afterward supplied, to effect what Marius, Sylla, and the two triumvirates brought about with sufficient ease. It looks as if Dusaulx had leaped from the times of old Metellus to those of Augustus, without casting a glance at the interval. The "torrens dicendi copia" was his, in an eminent degree; nay, so full, so rich, so strong, and so magnificent is his eloquence, that I have heard one well qualified to judge, frequently declare that Cicero himself, in his estimation, could hardly be said to surpass him.
In apologizing for his translation, he says: "As for publishing poetry, it needs no defense; there being, if my Lord of Verulam's judgment shall be admitted, 'a divine rapture in it! Indeed, Dryden himself, though confessedly aware of its impropriety, is not altogether free from "innovation;" he talks of the Park, and the Mall, and the Opera, and of many other objects, familiar to the translator, but which the original writer could only know by the spirit of prophecy.
I am sensible how difficult it is to keep the manners of different ages perfectly distinct in a work like this: I have never knowingly confounded them, and, I trust, not often inadvertently; yet more occasions perhaps of exercising the reader's candor will appear, after all, than are desirable. The peculiarity of Juvenal, he says vol. His imitation of the tenth still more beautiful as a poem has scarcely a trait of the author's manner—that is to say, of that "mixture of gayety and stateliness," which, according to his own definition, constitutes the "peculiarity of Juvenal.
The first Satire appears, from internal evidence, to have been written subsequently to at least the larger portion of the other Satires. But in this, as probably in many others, lines were interpolated here and there, at a period long after the original composition of the main body of the Satire; the cycle of events reproducing such a combination of circumstances, that the Satirist could make his shafts come home with two-fold pungency.
For instance, the lines 60 et seq. It is impossible, therefore, from any one given passage, to assign a date to any of the Satires of Juvenal. All that can be done, is to point out the allusion probably intended in the [Pg l] particular passages, and by that means fix a date prior to which we may reasonably conclude that portion could not have been written. In those Satires whose subject is less complicated and extensive, a nearer approximation may be obtained to the date of the composition; as e.
But in the first Satire, the allusions extend over so wide a period, that unless we may suppose, as in the case just cited, that other persons are intended under the names known to history, to whom his readers would apply immediately the covert sarcasm, we can hardly imagine that they could all at any one given time serve to give point to the shaft of the Satirist.
Thus Crispinus, mentioned l. The barber alluded to in l. Massa and Carus l. Again, line 49 seems to refer to the condemnation of Marius as a recent event; but this took place in A. And in that same year M. Cornelius Fronto was consul with Trajan; and may have been the proprietor of the plane-groves, mentioned l.
But then, again, we hear of Julius Fronto in A. We may therefore offer the conjecture, that the first Satire was written shortly after the year A. The second Satire was, in all probability, the first written. And this date will correspond with the other references in the Satire by which an approximation to the time of its composition may be obtained.
This connection was continued for some years. Shortly after the death of Julia, the Vestal virgin Cornelia was buried alive, A. These are alluded to as recent events l. Agricola, too, the conqueror of Britain, died A. We may therefore conjecture that the Satire was composed between the years A. The third Satire may perhaps have been written in the reign of Domitian, and may refer to the general departure of men of worth from Rome, when Domitian expelled the philosophers, A. Umbritius, who predicted the murder of Galba, A. The nightly deeds of violence perpetrated by Nero would have been still fresh in men's memories l.
Still there are other parts of the Satire that seem to bear evidence of a later date. It was not till A. The great influx of foreigners into Rome, in the train of Hadrian, at a still later date, A. See Chronology. We may therefore consider it probable that the main body of the Satire was written toward the close of the reign of Domitian, and received additions in the commencement of the reign of Hadrian.
The fourth Satire in all probability describes a real event; [Pg lii] and would have possessed but little interest after any great lapse of time, subsequent to the fact described. We may therefore fairly assign it to the early part of Nerva's reign, very shortly after the death of Domitian, which is mentioned at the close of the Satire. The fifth Satire contains nothing by which we can determine the date. From Juvenal's hatred of Domitian, we may suppose that l. If the Aurelia l. There is little doubt that considerable portions of the sixth Satire were written in the reign of Trajan.
The lines describe exactly the events which took place at Antioch, in A. The coins of Trajan of the year A. Again, l. The subject itself also affords an additional reason for supposing that the Satire was composed when the poet was advanced in life. The vices of women are hardly a topic for a young writer to select; but the vigorous manner in which he handles the lash, rather marks the state of mind of the man who has outgrown the passions of early manhood, and from "the high heaven of his philosophy" looks down with cold austerity on the desires, and with bitter indignation at the vices, of those whose feelings he has long [Pg liii] since ceased to share.
Juvenal was, as Hodgson says, "an impenetrable bachelor," and if, as he conjectures, he was jilted in his early youth, this fact would give additional bitterness to the rancor which in old age he would feel toward the sex by whom his personal happiness had been embittered, as well as the ruin of his native country precipitated. If we are right in supposing that by Heliodorus, Juvenal meant Artemidorus Capito and the change in the name is both simple and readily suggested , this would also bring down the date of this Satire to Juvenal's later years, as about A.
In line , Saufeia is spoken of in similar terms to those employed in the eleventh Satire, which was confessedly the work of his later years. Compare also the mention of Archigenes l. The allusions to the importation of foreigners, with their exotic vices, would also refer to the same date.
See Chron. The date of the seventh Satire will depend mainly on the question, Whom does Juvenal intend to panegyrize in his 1st line? Gifford pronounces unhesitatingly in favor of Domitian, and his argument is very plausible. He did not think very ill of him at the time, and augured happily for the future. This opinion he supports by some references to contemporary writers, and by the evidence of coins of Domitian existing with a head of Pallas on the reverse, to symbolize his royal patronage of poetry and literary pursuits.
But in almost every instance Gifford errs in assigning too early a date to the Satires; and one or two points in this clearly show that we must bring it down to a much later period. Domitian succeeded to the throne A. Now, 1. It was not till about ten years after this that the actor Paris acquired his influence and his wealth; and even allowing the very problematical story of the banishment of Juvenal having been caused by the offense given to the favorite by the famous lines to be true, this would bring it down to a time subsequent to the banishment of philosophers from Rome; after which act Juvenal, certainly, would not have written the first line on Domitian.
Again, in A. This poem was finished A. The praise of Domitian is incompatible with Juvenal's universal hatred and execration of him. The opening of the reign of the mild and excellent Nerva might well inspire hopes of the revival of a taste for literature and the arts; and I would conjecture the close of A. Before the end of the year Statius was dead; but Juvenal's words seem to imply that he was still living. Again, Matho the lawyer has failed, and is in great poverty l. But if we are right in supposing the first Satire to have been written about A. Of the eighth Satire, if "Lateranus" be the true reading l.
The plunder of his province of Africa, by Marius Priscus, was a recent event l. Ponticus, to whom the Satire is addressed, may be the person to whom Martial refers in his twelfth book, which was written A.
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There are two allusions by which we may form a conjecture as to the date of the ninth Satire. Crepereius Pollio is mentioned as nearly in the same circumstances of profligate poverty l. The internal evidence, supplied by the sustained majesty and dignified flow of language of the tenth as well as of the fourteenth Satire, without taking into consideration the philosophical nature of the subject of both, is quite sufficient to prove that they must have been the finished productions of a late period of a thoughtful life.
We are therefore quite prepared to admit the conjecture that the allusion in line is to the column of Trajan, erected in the year A. The repetition of the line also connects this with the first Satire, which it probably preceded only by a short interval. The d line of the eleventh Satire fixes its date to the later years of Juvenal's life. It breathes, besides, throughout the spirit of a calm and philosophic enjoyment of the blessings of life, that tells of declining age; cheered by a chastened appreciation of the comforts by which it is surrounded, but far removed from all extraneous or meretricious excitement, and utterly abhorrent of all noisy or exuberant hilarity.
An additional argument is mentioned in the Chronology for referring it to the date A. The twelfth Satire contains nothing by which we can fix its date with any certainty. If, however, as the commentators suppose, the wife of Fuscus, in the 45th line, be Saufeia, it will be connected with the sixth, ninth, and eleventh Satires, and may probably be considered the work of his advanced age. The thirteenth Satire is fixed by line 17 to the year A.
Fonteius Capito. This is the only Satire to which Mr. Clinton has assigned a date. The argument applied to the tenth Satire will apply with nearly equal force to the fourteenth. We are therefore prepared to admit the plausibility of the conjecture, that l. The event recorded in the fifteenth Satire occurred shortly after the consulship of Junius, l. The th line also probably refers to the influx of Greeks and other foreigners into Rome, in the train of Hadrian to which we have alluded in discussing the date of the third Satire , which took place in the preceding year.
The sixteenth Satire may have either been the draft of a longer poem, commenced in early life as l. The mention of Fucus may connect it with the twelfth Satire. The contributions trace the tenacity and the ambiguity of traditional narratives and signs of distinction: manuscripts and material remains, costume and epigraphy, historiography and hagiography were used in creative ways to shape civic, local, or religious communities.
Many of the contributions show the fundamental importance of Christian 'strategies of identification' for creating a stronger political role for ethnicity in the post-Roman kingdoms. If you have personal access to this content, log in with your username and password here:.
Author: Walter Pohl , and Gerda Heydemann. Description Table of Content PDF This volume looks at changing identities during the transition from the Roman empire to a political world defined by a different kingdoms and peoples in western Europe. Your Access Options. Log In If you have personal access to this content, log in with your username and password here: Email or username: Password: Remember me. Forgotten your password? Log In Via Your Institution.