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Title: Horace
Author: Tuckwell, William, 1829-1919
Language: English
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HORACE

[Illustration: [_Bib. Nat., Paris._
HORACE.
From a bronze medallion of the period of Constantine.]

Bell's Miniature Series of Great Writers

HORACE

by

REV. W. TUCKWELL, M.A.
Author of "Chaucer," Etc.



[Illustration]

London
George Bell & Sons
1905

Chiswick Press: Charles Whittingham and Co.
Tooks Court, Chancery Lane, London.



TABLE OF CONTENTS

                                                         PAGE

  Struggle                                                  9
  Success                                                  19
  Satires and Epistles                                     30
  Odes and Epodes                                          51
  Swan-Song                                                74
  The Wines of Horace                                      82
  Chronology                                               85
  Index                                                    87



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

                                                 TO FACE PAGE

  Horace, from a Bronze Medallion              _Frontispiece_
  Brutus                                                   12
  Maecenas                                                 16
  The Site of Horace's Villa                               22
  The Roman Forum                                          26
  Augustus                                                 46
  Virgil                                                   64
  The Forum Restored, as in A.D. 80                        74



THE LIFE OF HORACE



STRUGGLE


Quintus Horatius Flaccus, the "old popular Horace" of Tennyson, petted
and loved, by Frenchmen and Englishmen especially, above all the poets
of antiquity, was born on 8th December, B.C. 65. He calls himself in his
poems by the three names indifferently, but to us he is known only by
the affectionate diminutive of his second or gentile name, borne by his
father, according to the fashion of the time, as slave to some member
of the noble Horatian family. A slave the father unquestionably had
been: meanness of origin was a taunt often levelled against his son,
and encountered by him with magnanimous indifference; but long before
Horace's birth the older Horatius had obtained his freedom, had gained
sufficient money to retire from business, and to become owner of the
small estate at Venusia on the borders of Apulia, where the poet was
born and spent his childhood. He repeatedly alludes to this loved early
home, speaks affectionately of its surrounding scenery, of the dashing
river Aufidus, now Ofanto, of the neighbouring towns, Acherontia,
Bantia, Forentum, discoverable in modern maps as Acerenza, Vanzi,
Forenza, of the crystal Bandusian spring, at whose identity we can only
guess. Here he tells us how, wandering in the forest when a child and
falling asleep under the trees, he woke to find himself covered up by
woodpigeons with leaves, and alludes to a prevailing rural belief that
he was specially favoured by the gods. Long afterwards, too, when
travelling across Italy with Maecenas, he records with delight his
passing glimpse of the familiar wind-swept Apulian hills.

Of his father he speaks ever with deep respect. "Ashamed of him?" he
says, "because he was a freedman? whatever moral virtue, whatever charm
of character, is mine, that I owe to him. Poor man though he was, he
would not send me to the village school frequented by peasant children,
but carried me to Rome, that I might be educated with sons of knights
and senators. He pinched himself to dress me well, himself attended me
to all my lecture-rooms, preserved me pure and modest, fenced me from
evil knowledge and from dangerous contact. Of such a sire how should I
be ashamed? how say, as I have heard some say, that the fault of a man's
low birth is Nature's, not his own? Why, were I to begin my life again,
with permission from the gods to select my parents from the greatest of
mankind, I would be content, and more than content, with those I had."
The whole self-respect and nobleness of the man shines out in these
generous lines. (Sat. I, vi, 89.)

Twice in his old age Horace alludes rather disparagingly to his
schooldays in Rome: he was taught, he says, out of a translation from
Homer by an inferior Latin writer (Ep. II, i, 62, 69), and his master,
a retired soldier, one Orbilius, was "fond of the rod" (Ep. II, i, 71).
I observe that the sympathies of Horatian editors and commentators,
themselves mostly schoolmasters, are with Orbilius as a much enduring
paedagogue rather than with his exasperated pupil. We know from other
sources that the teacher was a good scholar and a noted teacher, and
that, dying in his hundredth year, he was honoured by a marble statue in
his native town of Beneventum; but like our English Orbilius, Dr. Busby,
he is known to most men only through Horace's resentful epithet;--"a
great man," said Sir Roger de Coverley, "a great man; he whipped my
grandfather, a very great man!"

The young Englishman on leaving school goes to Oxford or to Cambridge:
the young Roman went to Athens. There we find Horace at about nineteen
years of age, learning Greek, and attending the schools of the
philosophers; those same Stoics and Epicureans whom a few years later
the first great Christian Sophist was to harangue on Mars' Hill. These
taught from their several points of view the basis of happiness and the
aim of life. Each in turn impressed him: for a time he agreed with Stoic
Zeno that active duty is the highest good; then lapsed into the easy
doctrine of Epicurean Aristippus that subjective pleasure is the only
happiness. His philosophy was never very strenuous, always more practical
than speculative; he played with his teachers' systems, mocked at their
fallacies, assimilated their serious lessons.

[Illustration: _Alinari photo._] [_Palace of the Conservators, Rome._

BRUTUS.]

Then into his life at this time came an influence which helped to shape
his character, but had nearly wrecked his fortunes. Brutus, fresh from
Caesar's murder, was at Athens, residing, as we should say, in his old
University, and drawing to himself the passionate admiration of its most
brilliant undergraduates; among the rest, of the younger Cicero and of
Horace. Few characters in history are more pathetically interesting than
his. High born, yet disdainful of ambitious aims, irreproachable in an
age of almost universal profligacy, the one pure member of a grossly
licentious family, modest and unobtrusive although steeped in all the
learning of old Greece, strong of will yet tolerant and gentle, his
austerity so tempered by humanism that he won not only respect but love;
he had been adored by the gay young patricians, who paid homage to the
virtue which they did not rouse themselves to imitate, honoured as an
equal by men far older than himself, by Cicero, by Atticus, by Caesar.
As we stand before the bust in the Palace of the Conservators which
preserves his mobile features, in that face at once sweet and sad, at
once young and old, as are the faces not unfrequently of men whose
temperaments were never young--already, at thirty-one years old, stamped
with the lineaments of a grand but fatal destiny--we seem to penetrate
the character of the man whom Dante placed in hell, whom Shakespeare,
with sounder and more catholic insight, proclaimed to be the noblest
Roman of them all:

  His life was gentle, and the elements
  So mixed in him, that Nature might stand up,
  And say to all the world, _This was a man._


Quitting Athens after a time to take command of the army which had been
raised against Antony, Brutus carried Horace in his company with the
rank of military tribune. He followed his patron into Asia; one of his
early poems humorously describes a scene which he witnessed in the law
courts at Clazomenae. (Sat. I, vii, 5.) He was several times in action;
served finally at Philippi, sharing the headlong rout which followed
on Brutus' death; returned to Rome "humbled and with clipped wings."
(Od. II, vii, 10; Ep. II, ii, 50.) His father was dead, his property
confiscated in the proscription following on the defeat, he had to begin
the world again at twenty-four years old. He obtained some sort of
clerkship in a public office, and to eke out its slender emoluments he
began to write. What were his earliest efforts we cannot certainly say,
or whether any of them survive among the poems recognized as his. He
tells us that his first literary model was Archilochus (Ep. I, xix, 24),
a Greek poet of 700 B.C., believed to have been the inventor of personal
satire, whose stinging pen is said to have sometimes driven its victims
to suicide. For a time also he imitated a much more recent satirist,
Lucilius, whom he rejected later, as disliking both the harshness of his
style and the scurrilous character of his verses. (Sat. I, x.) It has
been conjectured therefore that his earliest compositions were severe
personal lampoons, written for money and to order, which his maturer
taste destroyed. In any case his writings found admirers. About three
years after his return to Rome his friends Varius and Virgil praised him
to Maecenas; the great man read the young poet's verses, and desired to
see him. (Sat. I, vi, 54.)

It is as an enlightened and munificent patron of letters that Maecenas
holds his place in popular estimation, but he was much more than this.
He had been since Caesar's death the trusty agent and the intimate
adviser of Augustus; a hidden hand, directing the most delicate
manoeuvres of his master. In adroit resource and suppleness no
diplomatist could match him. His acute prevision of events and his
penetrating insight into character enabled him to create the
circumstances and to mould the men whose combination was necessary to
his aims. By the tact and moderation of his address, the honied words
which averted anger, the dexterous reticence which disarmed suspicion,
he reconciled opposing factions, veiled arbitrary measures, impressed
alike on nobles and on populace the beneficence of imperial despotism,
while he kept its harshness out of sight. Far from parading his
extensive powers, he masked them by ostentatious humility, refusing
official promotion, contented with the inferior rank of "Knight,"
sitting in theatre and circus below men whom his own hand had raised
to station higher than his own. Absorbed in unsleeping political toil,
he wore the outward garb of a careless, trifling voluptuary. It was
difficult to believe that this apparently effeminate lounger, foppish in
dress, with curled and scented hair, luxuriating in the novel refinement
of the warm bath, an epicure in food and drink, patronizing actors,
lolling in his litter amid a train of parasites, could be the man on
whom, as Horace tells us, civic anxieties and foreign dangers pressed
a ceaseless load. He had built himself a palace and laid out noble
gardens, the remains of which still exist, at the foot of the Esquiline
hill. It had been the foulest and most disreputable slum in Rome, given
up to the burial of paupers, the execution of criminals, the obscene
rites of witches, a haunt of dogs and vultures. He made it healthy
and beautiful; Horace celebrates its salubrity, and Augustus, when
an invalid, came thither to breathe its air. (Sat. I, viii, 8, 14.)
There Maecenas set out his books and his gems and his Etruscan ware,
entertained his literary and high born friends, poured forth his
priceless Caecuban and Chian wines. There were drops of bitter in these
cups. His beautiful wife Terentia tormented him by her temper and her
infidelities; he put her away repeatedly, as often received her back.
It was said of him that he had been married a hundred times, though only
to a single wife: "What is the latest conjugal news?" men asked as his
sumptuous litter passed by, "is it a marriage or a divorce?" And he was
haunted by terror of death. "Prolong my life," was his prayer, in words
which Seneca has ridiculed and La Fontaine translated finely, yet
missing the terseness of the original, "life amid tortures, life even
on a cross, only life!"

                        Qu'on me rend impotent,
  Cul-de-jatte, goutteux, manchot, pourvu qu'en somme
  Je vive, c'est assez; je suis plus que content.


His patronage of intellectual men was due to policy as well as
inclination. Himself a cultured literary critic, foreseeing the
full-winged soar of writers still half-fledged--the "Aeneid" in Virgil's
"Eclogues," the "Odes" of Horace in his "Epodes"--he would not only
gather round his board the men whom we know to have been his equals,
whose wit and wisdom Horace has embalmed in an epithet, a line, an ode;
Varius, and Sulpicius, and Plotius, and Fonteius Capito, and Viscus;
but he saw also and utilized for himself and for his master the social
influence which a rising poet might wield, the effect with which a bold
epigram might catch the public ear, a well-conceived eulogy minister to
imperial popularity, an eloquent sermon, as in the noble opening odes of
Horace's third book, put vice out of countenance and raise the tone of
a decadent community.

[Illustration: _Alinari photo._] [_Palace of the Conservators, Rome._

MAECENAS.]

To Horace, then, now twenty-seven years old, these imposing doors were
opened. The first interview was unsatisfactory; the young poet was
tongue-tied and stammering, the great man reserved and haughty: they
parted mutually dissatisfied. Nine months later Maecenas sent for him
again, received him warmly, enrolled him formally amongst his friends.
(Sat. I, vi, 61.) Horace himself tells the story: he explains neither
the first coldness, the long pause, nor the later cordiality. But he
rose rapidly in his patron's favour; a year afterwards we find him
invited to join Maecenas on a journey to Brundusium, of which he has
left us an amusing journal (Sat. I, v); and about three years later
still was presented by him with a country house and farm amongst the
Sabine hills, a few miles to the east of Tibur, or, as it is now
called, Tivoli.

With this a new chapter in his life begins. During six years he had
lived in Rome, first as an impecunious clerk, then as a client of
Maecenas. To all Roman homes of quality and consequence clients were a
necessary adjunct: men for the most part humble and needy, who attended
to welcome the patron when issuing from his chamber in the morning,
preceded and surrounded his litter in the streets, clearing a way for
it through the crowd; formed, in short, his court, rewarded by a daily
basket of victuals or a small sum of money. If a client was involved in
litigation, his patron would plead his cause in person or by deputy; he
was sometimes asked to dinner, where his solecisms in good breeding and
his unfashionable dress, the rustic cut of his beard, thick shoes, gown
clumsily draped, made him the butt of the higher guests. Juvenal, in a
biting satire, describes the humiliation of a poor client at a rich
man's table. "The host," he says, "drinks old beeswinged Setian wine,
served to him in a gold goblet by a beautiful boy; to you a coarse black
slave brings in a cracked cup wine too foul even to foment a bruise.
His bread is pure and white, yours brown and mouldy; before him is
a huge lobster, before you a lean shore-crab; his fish is a barbel or
a lamprey, yours an eel:--and, if you choose to put up with it, you
are rightly served." The relation, though not held to be disgraceful,
involved sometimes bitter mortifications, and seems to us inconsistent
with self-respect. We remember how it was resented in modern times,
though in a much milder form, by Edmund Spenser, Dr. Johnson, and the
poet Crabbe. Even between a Horace and a Maecenas it must have caused
occasional embarrassment: we find the former, for instance, dedicating
poems to men whose character he could not respect, but to whom, as his
patron's associates, he was bound to render homage; while his supposed
intimacy with the all-powerful minister exposed him to tedious
solicitants, who waylaid him in his daily walks. He had become sick of
"the smoke and the grandeur and the roar of Rome" (Od. III, 29, 12); his
Sabine retreat would be an asylum and a haven; would "give him back to
himself"; would endow him with competence, leisure, freedom; he hailed
it as the mouse in his delightful apologue craved refuge in the country
from the splendour and the perils of the town:

  Give me again my hollow tree,
  A crust of bread--and liberty.

  (Sat. II, 6, fin.)



SUCCESS


Horace's Sabine farm ranks high among the holy places of the classic
world; and through the labours of successive travellers, guided by the
scattered indications in his poems, its site is tolerably certain. It
was about thirty-two miles from Rome, reached in a couple of hours by
pilgrims of the present time; to Horace, who never allowed himself to be
hurried, the journey of a full day, or of a leisurely day and a half.
Let us follow him as he rides thither on his bob-tailed mule (Sat. I,
vi, 104), the heavy saddlebags across its loins stored with scrolls of
Plato, of the philosopher Menander, Eupolis the comedian, Archilochus
the lyric poet. His road lies along the Valerian Way, portions of whose
ancient pavement still remain, beside the swift waters of the Anio, amid
steep hills crowned with small villages whose inmates, like the Kenites
of Balaam's rhapsody, put their nests in rocks. A ride of twenty-seven
miles would bring him to Tivoli, or Tibur, where he stopped to rest,
sometimes to pass the night, possessing very probably a cottage in the
little town. No place outside his home appealed to him like this. Nine
times he mentions it, nearly always with a caressing epithet. It is
green Tibur, dew-fed Tibur, Tibur never arid, leisurely Tibur, breezy
Tibur, Tibur sloping to the sun. He bids his friend Varus plant vines in
the moist soil of his own Tiburtine patrimony there; prays that when the
sands of his life run low, he may there end his days; enumerates, in a
noble ode (Od. I, 7), the loveliest spots on earth, preferring before
them all the headlong Anio, Tibur's groves, its orchards saturated with
shifting streams.

  The dark pine waves on Tibur's classic steep,
  From rock to rock the headlong waters leap,
  Tossing their foam on high, till leaf and flower
  Glitter like emeralds in the sparkling shower.
  Lovely--but lovelier from the charms that glow
  Where Latium spreads her purple vales below;
  The olive, smiling on the sunny hill,
  The golden orchard, and the ductile rill,
  The spring clear-bubbling in its rocky fount,
  The mossgrown cave, the Naiad's fabled haunt,
  And, far as eye can strain, yon shadowy dome,
  The glory of the earth, Eternal Rome.


No picture of the spot can be more graphic than are these noble lines.
They open a Newdigate Prize Poem of just eighty years ago, written, says
tradition, by its brilliant author in a single night. (R. C. Sewell,
Magdalen College, 1825.) Tivoli he had never visited; but those who
stand to-day beside the Temple of the Sibyl on the edge of its ravine,
who enjoy the fair beauty of the headlong Anio and the lesser
Cascatelle, of the ruined Temple of Tiburtus, the Grottos of the Sirens
and of Neptune, understand how a poet's genius can, as Shakespeare
tells us, shadow forth things unseen, and give them local habitation.

From Tibur, still beside the Anio, we drive for about seven miles, until
we reach the ancient Varia, now Vico Varo, mentioned by Horace as the
small market town to which his five tenant-farmers were wont to repair
for agricultural or municipal business. (Ep. I, xiv, 3.) Here, then, we
are in the poet's country, and must be guided by the landmarks in his
verse. Just beyond Vico Varo the Anio is joined by the Licenza. This is
Horace's Digentia, the stream he calls it whose icy waters freshen him,
the stream of which Mandela drinks. (Ep. I, xviii, 104-105.) And there,
on its opposite bank, is the modern village Bardela, identified with
Mandela by a sepulchral inscription recently dug up. We turn northward,
following the stream; the road becomes distressingly steep, recalling
a line in which the poet speaks of returning homeward "to his mountain
stronghold." (Sat. II, vi, 16.) Soon we reach a village, Roccagiovine,
whose central square is named Piazza Vacuna. Vacuna was the ancient name
for the goddess Victory; and against the wall is fixed an exhumed tablet
telling how the Emperor Vespasian here restored an ancient Temple of
Victory. One more echo this name wakes in Horatian ears--he dates a
letter to his friend Aristius Fuscus as written "behind the crumbling
shrine of Vacuna." (Ep. I, x, 49.) Clearly we are near him now; he
would not carry his writing tablets far away from his door. Yet another
verification we require. He speaks of a spring just beside his home, cool
and fine, medicinal to head and stomach. (Ep. I, xvi, 12.) Here it is,
hard by, called to-day Fonte d'Oratini, a survival, we should like to
believe, of the name Horatius. Somewhere close at hand must have been
the villa, on one side or the other of a small hill now called Monte
Rotondo. We may take our Horace from our pocket, and feel, as with our
Wordsworth at Dove Cottage, with our Scott at Ashestiel, that we are
gazing on the hills, the streams, and valleys, which received the primal
outpourings of their muse, and are for ever vocal with its memories.

[Illustration: THE SITE OF HORACE'S VILLA.]

From M. Rotondo, eastward to the Licenza, and southward to the
high ground of Roccogiovine, stretched apparently the poet's not
inconsiderable demesne. Part of it he let off to five peasants on the
_métayage_ system; the rest he cultivated himself, employing eight
slaves superintended by a bailiff. The house, he tells us, was simple,
with no marble pillars or gilded cornices (Od. II, xviii), but spacious
enough to receive and entertain a guest from town, and to welcome
occasionally his neighbours to a cheerful evening meal--"nights and
suppers as of gods" (Sat. II, vi, 65), he calls them; where the talk
was unfashionably clean and sensible, the fare beans and bacon, garden
stuff and chicory and mallows. Around the villa was a garden, not filled
with flowers, of which in one of his odes he expresses dislike as
unremunerative (Od. II, xv, 6), but laid out in small parallelograms
of grass, edged with box and planted with clipped hornbeam. The house
was shaded from above by a grove of ilexes and oaks; lower down were
orchards of olives, wild plums, cornels, apples. In the richer soil of
the valley he grew corn, whose harvests never failed him, and, like Eve
in Eden, led the vine to wed her elm. Against this last experiment his
bailiff grumbled, saying that the soil would grow spice and pepper as
soon as ripen grapes (Ep. I, xiv, 23); but his master persisted, and
succeeded. Inviting Maecenas to supper, he offers Sabine wine from his
own estate (Od. I, xx, 1); and visitors to-day, drinking the juice of
the native grape at the little Roccogiovine inn, will be of opinion with
M. de Florac, that "this little wine of the country has a most agreeable
smack." Here he sauntered day by day, watched his labourers, working
sometimes, like Ruskin at Hincksey, awkwardly to their amusement with
his own hands; strayed now and then into the lichened rocks and forest
wilds beyond his farm, surprised there one day by a huge wolf, who
luckily fled from his presence (Od. I, xxii, 9); or--most enjoyable of
all--lay beside spring or river with a book or friend of either sex.

  A book of verses underneath the bough,
  A loaf of bread, a jug of wine, and thou
  Beside me singing in the wilderness,
  Oh, wilderness were Paradise enow!


So roll to each other across the ages and the continents echoes of the
Persian and the Roman bards.

Of the _beauty_ of his home he speaks always modestly; it may not
compare with Praeneste, Tarentum, Baiae; its _charm_ he is never weary
of extolling. Nowhere, he says, is the air sweeter and more balmy, in
summer temperate, warm in winter; but beyond all this it yielded calm,
tranquillity, repose, making, as Wordsworth says, the very thought of
country life a thought of refuge; and that was what, so long in populous
city pent, he longed to find, and found. It was his _home_, where he
could possess his soul, could be self-centred and serene. "This," says
Ruskin, "is the true nature of Home; it is the Place of Peace."

He loved the country, yet he was no hermit. When sickened of town life
he could apostrophize the country in the beautiful lines which many a
jaded Londoner has echoed (Sat. II, vi, 60); but after some months of
its placid joys the active social side of him would re-assert itself:
the welcoming friends of the great city, its brilliant talk, its rush of
busy life, recovered their attractiveness, and for short intervals, in
the healthy season of the year, he would return to Rome. There it is
less easy to image him than in his rustic home. Nature, if spared by
man, remains unaltered; the heights and recesses of the Digentian valley
meet our eye to-day scarce changed in twenty centuries, but the busy,
crowded Rome of Horace is now only a desolate excavation. We stand upon
the "Rock of Triumph," the Capitoline Hill, looking down upon the Forum:
it lies like a stonemason's yard: stumps of pillars, fragments of brick
or marble, overthrown entablatures, pillars, altars, tangles of
staircases and enclosures, interspersed with poppies, wild oats,
trefoils, confuse and crowd it:

  Cypress and ivy, weed and wallflower grow
  Matted and massed together, hillocks heaped
  On what were chambers; arch crushed, columns strown
  In fragments; choked up vaults, where the owl peeped,
  Deeming it midnight.


But patient, daily survey, educated by the restorations of a Lanciani,
enables us to piece together these encumbering ruins, until with
tolerable clearness we can follow Horace in his walk along the Via Sacra
towards Caesar's gardens, and can fairly reconstruct the objects which
must have met his view. Everywhere is haunted ground: there is the
bronze wolf of the Capitol, "thunder-stricken nurse of Rome," and the
Tarpeian rock, from which "the Traitor's leap cured all ambition."
There is the mythical gulf of Curtius, and the Mamertine prison where
the Catiline conspirators were strangled, with its vault into which
Jugurtha, after gracing the triumph of Marius, was hurled to die.
Maiden-hair fern grows profusely in the crevices of Juturna's well,
hard by the spring where the great twin brethren gave their horses drink
after the battle of the Lake Regillus. Half covered with a mass of green
acanthus is the base of Vesta's Temple, adjoining the atrium of the
Virgins' house surrounded with their portrait statues: their names are
engraved on each pedestal, but one is carefully erased, its original
having, it is supposed, violated her vestal vow. We pause upon the spot
where Caesar's body was burned, and beside the rostra whence Cicero
thundered, and Antony spoke his "Friends, Romans, countrymen"; return
finally to the Capitoline Museum, nucleus and centre of the ancient
mistress of the world, to gaze upon gods, senators, emperors, shining
still in undiminished majesty; on the Antinous, the Amazon, the Juno,
the Dying Gladiator, and the Grecian masterpiece of Praxiteles.

[Illustration: _Alinari photo._

THE ROMAN FORUM.]

Of his life in Rome Horace has given us a minute account (Sat. I, vi,
110, etc.). "Waking usually about six, I lie in bed or on my sofa,
reading and writing, till nearly ten o'clock; anoint myself, go to the
Campus for a game at ball, return home to a light luncheon. Then perhaps
I amuse myself at home, perhaps saunter about the town; look in at the
Circus and gossip with the fortune-tellers who swarm there when the
games are over; walk through the market, inquiring the price of garden
stuff and grain. Towards evening I come home to my supper of leeks and
pulse and fritters, served by my three slave-boys on a white marble
slab, which holds besides two drinking cups and ladle, a saltcellar
shaped like a sea-urchin, an oil flask, and a saucer of cheap Campanian
ware; and so at last I go to bed, not harassed by the thought that I
need rise at day-break." Sometimes, to his great annoyance, he would be
roused early to become sponsor in the law courts for a friend; shivering
in the morning cold, pelted by falling hailstones, abused by the crowd
through which he had to force his way. Or he would accompany Maecenas
on a drive, their talk of matters trivial--the time of day, the early
frosts, the merits of popular gladiators. We remember how delightfully
Pope has adapted the passage to his own relation with Harley. (Imitation
of Sat. II, vi.) Often he dined with Maecenas or his friends, and one
such dinner he has described, at the house of a rich, vulgar epicure
(Sat. II, viii). The guests were nine in number, including Maecenas,
Varius, and Viscus: they lay on couches at maplewood tables arranged
in three sides of a square. The first course was a Lucanian wild boar
garnished with salads; when that was removed, servants wiped the board
with purple napkins. Then a procession of slaves brought in Caecuban and
Chian wines, accompanied with cheesecakes, fish, and apples. The second
course was a vast lamprey, prawns swimming in its sauce; the third an
olio of crane, hare, goose's liver, blackbirds, and wood-pigeons.
A sumptuous meal, but spoiled by the host's tedious disquisitions on
each dish as it appeared. Of social gatherings in their higher aspect,
of the feasts of reason which he must have often shared at his patron's
board, we long to know, but Horace is discreet; for him the rose of
Harpocrates was suspended over every caenobium, and he would not profane
its sacrament. He sat there as an equal, we know; his attitude towards
those above him had in it no tinge of servility. That he was, and meant
to be, independent they were fairly warned; when Maecenas wished to heap
on him further benefits, he refused: "What I have is enough and more
than enough," he said, "nay, should fortune shake her wings and leave
me, I know how to resign her gifts" (Od. III, xxix, 53). And if not
to Maecenas, so neither to Maecenas' master, would he sacrifice his
freedom. The emperor sought his friendship, writes caressingly to
Maecenas of "this most lovable little bit of a man," wished to make him
his secretary, showed no offence at his refusal. His letters use the
freedom of an intimate. "Septimius will tell you how highly I regard
you. I happened to speak of you in his presence; if you disdain my
friendship, I shall not disdain in return."--"I wish your little book
were bigger; you seem to fear lest your books should be bigger than
yourself."--"I am vexed with you, that you have never addressed one of
your Epistles to myself; are you afraid that to have appeared as my
friend will hurt you with posterity?" Such royal solicitations are a
command, and Horace responded by the longest and one amongst the most
admired of his Epistles (Ep. II, i). This was his final effort, unless
the fragmentary essay on criticism, known as the "Art of Poetry,"
belongs to these last years; if that be so, his closing written words
were a humorous disparagement of the "homely slighted shepherd's trade"
(A. P. 470-476).

His life was drawing to a close; his friends were falling round him like
leaves in wintry weather. Tibullus was dead, and so was Virgil, dearest
and whitest-souled of men (Sat. I, v, 41); Maecenas was in failing
health and out of favour. Old age had come to himself before its time;
love, and wine, and festal crown of flowers had lost their zest:

  Soon palls the taste for noise and fray,
  When hair is white and leaves are sere.


But he rallies his life-long philosophy to meet the change; patience
lightens the inevitable; while each single day is his he will spend and
enjoy it in such fashion that he may say at its conclusion, "I have
lived" (Od. III, xxix, 41). His health had never been good, undermined,
he believed, by the hardships of his campaign with Brutus; all the
care of Augustus' skilful physician, Antonius Musa, failed to prolong
his days. He passed away on the 17th of November, B.C. 8, in his
fifty-seventh year; was buried on the Esquiline Hill, in a grave near
to the sepulchre of Maecenas, who had died only a few days before;
fulfilling the promise of an early ode, shaped almost in the words of
Moabitish Ruth, that he would not survive his friend.

                  The self-same day
  Shall crush us twain; no idle oath
  Has Horace sworn; where'er you go,
  We both will travel, travel both
  The last dark journey down below.

  Od. II, xvii.



THE SATIRES AND EPISTLES


Horace's poems are of two kinds; of one kind the Satires and Epistles,
of another the Odes and Epodes. Their order and dates of publication are
shown in the following table:

       B.C.
        35.  First Book of Satires.
        30.  Second Book of Satires, and Epodes.
        23.  First three Books of Odes.
        20.  First Book of Epistles.
        19.  Epistle to Florus.
        17.  The Century Hymn.
  about 13.  Fourth Book of the Odes.
        13.  Epistle to Augustus.
    (?) 10.  The Art of Poetry.


Let us examine first the Satires and Epistles. The word "Satire" meant
originally a _farrago_, a medley of various topics in various styles and
metres. But all early writings of this kind have perished; and the first
extant Latin satirist, Lucilius, who lived in the second century B.C.,
devoted his pen to castigating the vices of contemporary society
and of living individuals. This style of writing, together with his
six-foot measure, called hexameter, was adopted by the ethical writers
who followed him, Horace, Persius, Juvenal; and so gave to the word
satire a meaning which it retains to-day. In more than one passage
Horace recognizes Lucilius as his master, and imitates him in what is
probably the earliest, certainly the coarsest and least artistic of his
poems; but maturer judgement, revolting later against the censorious
spirit and bad taste of the older writer, led him to abandon his model.
For good taste is the characteristic of these poems; they form a comedy
of manners, shooting as it flies the folly rather than the wickedness of
vice: not wounding with a red-hot iron, but "just flicking with uplifted
lash," Horace stands to Juvenal as Chaucer stands to Langland, as Dante
to Boccaccio. His theme is life and conduct, the true path to happiness
and goodness. I write sermons in sport, he says; but sermons by a
fellow-sinner, not by a dogmatic pulpiteer, not by a censor or a cynic.
"Conversations" we may rather call them; the polished talk of a
well-bred, cultured, practised worldling, lightening while they point
the moral which he ever keeps in view, by transitions, personalities,
ironies, anecdotes; by perfect literary grace, by the underlying
sympathy whereby wit is sublimed and softened into humour.

So he tells stories; often trivial, but redeemed by the lightness of
his touch, the avoidance of redundancy, the inevitable epithets, the
culminating point and finish. He illustrates the extravagance of the day
by the spendthrift Clodius, who dissolved in vinegar a pearl taken from
the ear of beautiful Metella (Sat. II, iii, 239), that he might enjoy
drinking at one draught a million sesterces, near a thousand pounds.
More than once he returns to castigation of the gluttony, which, though
not yet risen to the monstrosity described by Juvenal, was invading the
houses of the wealthy. He tells of two brothers--"a precious pair"--who
used to breakfast daily upon nightingales: of one Maenius, who ruined
himself in fieldfares (Ep. I, xv, 41). In a paper on the "Art of Dining"
he accumulates ironical gastronomic maxims (Sat. II, iv): as that oblong
eggs are to be preferred to round; that cabbages should be reared in dry
soil; that the forelegs of a doe-hare are choice titbits; that to make a
fowl tender you must plunge it alive into boiling wine and water; that
oysters are best at the new moon; that prawns and snails give zest to
wine; that olive oil should be mixed with pickled tunny roe, chopped
herbs, and saffron. If these prescriptions are observed, he says,
travestying a fine Lucretian line, the diner-out may draw near to and
drink deep from the well-spring of a happy life. By contrast he paints
the character of Ofellus, a farmer, whom he had known when a boy on the
Apulian hills, and had visited in his old age (Sat. II, ii). Deprived of
his estate after Philippi, Ofellus had rented it from its new master,
working on as tenant where he had formerly been lord. "How are we worse
off now?" says the gallant old fellow to his sons. "When I was rich, we
lived on smoked bacon and cabbages, with perhaps a pullet or a kid if
a friend dropped in; our dessert of split figs and raisins grown upon
the farm. Well, we have just the same to-day. What matter that they
called me 'owner' then, that a stranger is called owner now? There is no
such thing as 'owner.' This man turned us out, someone else may turn him
out to-morrow; his heir will do so at any rate when he dies. The farm
was called mine once, it is called his to-day; it can never 'belong' to
anyone except the man who works and uses it. So, my boys, keep stout
hearts, and be ready to meet adversity bravely when it comes."

He lashes the legacy-hunters, who, in a time when disinclination to
marriage had multiplied the number of childless old men, were becoming a
curse to society; gives rules with affected seriousness for angling in a
senior's hoards (Sat. II, v). Be sure you send him game, tell him often
how you love him, address him by his first, what we should call his
Christian, name--that tickles sensitive ears. If he offers you his will,
refuse to read it, but glance sidelong at the line where the names of
legatees are written. Praise his bad verses, shoulder a way for him in
the streets, entreat him to cover up from cold his dear old head, make
up to his housekeeper, flatter him till he bids you stop. Then when he
is dead and you find yourself his heir, shed tears, spend money on his
funeral, bear your honours meekly--and go on to practise upon someone
else. And he throws in a sly story of a testatrix who bequeathed her
money on condition that the heir should carry to the grave upon his
naked shoulders her body oiled all over; he had stuck to her all her
life, and she hoped to shake him off for a moment after death. He
enforces the virtue of moderation and contentment from Aesop's fables,
of the frog, of the daw with borrowed plumage, of the lean weasel who
squeezed himself into a granary through a tiny hole, and grew so fat
that he could not return; from the story of Philippus, who amused
himself by enriching a poor man to the ruin of his victim's peace and
happiness (Ep. I, vii, 46); and from the delightful apologue of the
City and the Country Mouse (Sat. II, vi). He denounces the folly of
miserliness from the example of the ant, provident in amassing store,
but restful in fruition of it when amassed; reproves ill-natured
judgement of one's neighbours almost in the words of Prior, bidding
us be to their faults a little blind and to their virtues very kind,
softening their moral blemishes as lovers and mothers euphemize a dear
one's physical defects. (Sat. I, iii) "You will not listen to me?" he
stops now and then to say; "I shall continue to cry on all the same
until I rouse you, as the audience in the theatre did the other day"
(Sat. II, iii, 60). For it seems that one Fufius, a popular actor,
assumed in a tragedy the part of Trojan Ilione, whose cue was to fall
asleep upon the stage until roused with a whisper of "Mother awake!"
by the ghost of her dead son Deiphilus. Poor Fufius was tipsy, fell
asleep in earnest, and was insensible to the ghost's appeal, until
the audience, entering into the fun, unanimously shouted, "Wake up,
Mother!" Some of you, I know, he goes on, will listen, even as Polemon
did (Sat. II, iii, 254). Returning from a debauch, the young profligate
passed the Academy where Xenocrates was lecturing, and burst riotously
in. Presently, instead of scoffing, he began to hearken; was touched
and moved and saddened, tore off conscience-stricken his effeminate
ornaments, long sleeves, purple leggings, cravat, the garland from his
head, the necklace from his throat; came away an altered and converted
man. One thinks of a poem by Rossetti, and of something further back
than that; for did we not hear the story from sage Mr. Barlow's lips,
in our Sandford and Merton salad days?

In the earlier Satires his personalities are sometimes gross:
chatterbox Fabius, scattercash Nomentanus, blear-eyed Crispinus,
Hermogenes the fop, Pantolabus the trencherman, Gorgonius the
goat-scented, Rufillus the pastille-perfumed, were derisive sobriquets,
which, while ministering to the censoriousness of readers by names
genuine or well understood, must have bitterly offended the men thus
stigmatized or transparently indicated. This he admits regretfully in
his later Satires, throwing some blame on a practice of his father, who
when cautioning him against vice, always pointed the warning by some
example from among their acquaintance. So, leaving personal satire, he
turns to other topics; relates divertingly the annoyances of a journey;
the mosquitoes, the frogs which croaked all night (Sat. I, v), the bad
water and the ill-baked bread. Or he paints the slummy quarter of the
city in which the witches held their horrible rites, and describes their
cruel orgies as he peeped at them through the trees one night. Or he
girds, facetiously and without the bitterness of Persius or Juvenal,
at the Jews (Sat. I, v, 100), whose stern exclusiveness of faith was
beginning to excite in Rome the horror vigorously expressed by Gallio
in M. Anatole France's recent brilliant work. Or he delineates, on a
full canvas and with the modernity which is amongst his most endearing
characteristics, the "Bore" of the Augustan age. He starts on a summer
morning, light-hearted and thinking of nothing at all, for a pleasant
stroll along the Sacred Way (Sat. I, ix).[1] A man whom he hardly knew
accosts him, ignores a stiff response, clings to him, refuses to be
shaken off, sings his own praises as poet, musician, dancer, presses
impertinent questions as to the household and habits of Maecenas.
Horace's friend Fuscus meets them; the poet nods and winks, imploring
him to interpose a rescue. Cruel Fuscus sees it all, mischievously
apologizes, will not help, and the shy, amiable poet walks on with his
tormentor, "his ears dropped like those of an overladen ass." At last
one of the bore's creditors comes up, collars him with threats, hales
him to the law courts, while the relieved poet quotes in his joy from
the rescue of Hector in the Iliad, "Thus Apollo bore me from the fray."
In this Satire, which was admirably imitated by Swift, it always seems
to me that we get Horace at his very best, his dry quaintness and his
inoffensive fun. The _delicacy_ of Roman satire died with him; to
reappear in our own Augustan age with Addison and Steele, to find faint
echo in the gentle preachments of Cowper, to impress itself in every
page on the lambent humour, the self-accusing tolerance, the penetrative
yet benignant wit of Thackeray.

[Footnote 1: May the writer ask indulgence while he recalls how,
exactly fifty-eight years ago, as senior boy at Winchester,
he recited this Satire publicly, receiving in recompense at
Warden Barter's hands the Queen's silver medal for elocution.]

       *       *       *       *       *

Between the latest of the Satires and the earliest of the Epistles, we
have to reckon an interval of something like ten years, during which had
been published the Epodes and the majority of the Odes. "Epistles" his
editors have agreed to entitle them; but not all of them are genuine
Letters. Some are rather dedicated than written to the persons whose
names they bear; some are thrown for literary purposes into epistolary
form; some again are definitely and personally addressed to friends.
"Sermons" he calls them himself as he called the Satires, and their
motive is mostly the same; like those, they are Conversations, only with
absent correspondents instead of with present interlocutors, real or
imagined. He follows in them the old theme, the art of living, the
happiness of moderation and contentment; preaching easily as from
Rabelais' easy chair, with all the Frenchman's wit, without his
grossness. And, as we read, we feel how the ten years of experience, of
thought, of study, have matured his views of life, how again the labour
spent during their progress on lyrical composition, with perhaps the
increasing influence over his taste of Virgil's poetry, have trained his
ear, mellowed and refined his style. "The Epistles of Horace," says Dean
Milman, "are, with the Poem of Lucretius, the Georgics of Virgil, and
perhaps the Satires of Juvenal, the most perfect and most original form
of Roman verse."

Of the three letters to Maecenas, one, like the Ode we have before
quoted on p. 28, is a vigorous assertion of independence. The great
man, sorely sick and longing for his friend, had written peevishly
(Ep. I, vii), "You said you should be absent five days only, and you
stay away the whole of August." "Well--I went away because I was ill,
and I remain away because in this 'undertakers' month,' as you call
it in Rome, I am afraid of being worse if I go back. When cold weather
comes I shall go down to the sea; then, with the first swallow, dear
friend, your poet will revisit you. I love you fondly; am grateful to
you every hour of my life; but if you want to keep me always by your
side, you must restore to me the tender grace of vanished youth; strong
lungs, thick black hair, musical voice and ringing laughter; with our
common love for pretty Cinara now dead and gone." A positive sturdy
refusal, not without hints that if the patron repents his benefactions
or demands sacrifice of freedom in exchange for them, he had better take
them back: yet a remonstrance so disarming, infused with such a blend of
respect and playfulness, such wealth of witty anecdote and classical
allusion, that we imagine the fretfulness of the appeased protector
evaporating in admiration as he reads, the answer of affectionate
apology and acceptance dictated in his pacified response.

In another inimitable letter (Ep. I, 9), as brief as this is long, he
recommends his friend Septimius to Tiberius Claudius Nero, stepson of
Augustus, a young man of reserved unpleasant manners, and difficult to
approach. The suasive grace with which it disclaims presumption, yet
pleads his own merits as a petitioner and his friend's as a candidate
for favour, with its dignified deference, implied not fulsome, to the
young prince's rank, have caused it to be compared with that masterpiece
of delicate solicitation, St. Paul's Epistle to Philemon. It is cited by
Steele in the "Spectator" as a model of epistolary tact ("Spectator,"
No. 493); we cannot improve upon his translation:

    "Septimius, who waits on you with this, is clearly well acquainted
    with the place you are pleased to allow me in your friendship.
    For when he beseeches me to recommend him to your notice in such
    a manner as to be received by you, who are delicate in the choice
    of your friends and domestics, he knows our intimacy and understands
    my ability to serve him better than I do myself. I have defended
    myself against his ambition to be yours as long as I possibly
    could; but fearing the imputation of hiding my influence with you
    out of mean and selfish considerations, I am at last prevailed
    upon to give you this trouble. Thus, to avoid the appearance
    of a greater fault, I have put on this confidence. If you can
    forgive such transgression of modesty in behalf of a friend,
    receive this gentleman into your interests and friendship, and
    take it from me that he is a brave and honest man."


An epistle written and sent about the same time, possibly by the same
bearer, shows Horace in an amiable light as kindly Mentor to the young
Telemachi of rank who were serving on Tiberius' staff (Ep. I, iii).
"Tell me, Florus, whereabouts you are just now, in snowy Thrace or
genial Asia? which of you poets is writing the exploits of Augustus? how
does Titius get on with his Latin rendering of Pindar? my dear friend
Celsus, what is he at work upon? his own ideas, I hope, not cribs from
library books. And you? are you abandoning all other allurements for
the charms of divine philosophy? Tell me, too, if you have made up your
quarrel with Munatius. To break the tie of brotherhood is a crime:
please, please be friends with him again, and bring him with you when
next you come to see me. I am fattening a calf to feast you both." Here
is a dinner invitation (Ep. I, v.): "If you can put up with deal tables
and a mess of greens served in a common dish, with wine five years old
and not at all bad, come and sup with me, Torquatus, at sunset. We have
swept up the hearth and cleaned the furniture; you may see your face
reflected in cup and platter. We will have a long summer evening of
talk, and you can sleep afterwards as late as you like, for to morrow is
Augustus' birthday, and there will be no business in the courts. I told
you the wine is good, and there is nothing like good drink. It unlocks
reticence, unloads hearts, encourages the shy, makes the tongue-tied
eloquent and the poor opulent. I have chosen my company well: there will
be no blab to repeat our conversation out of doors. Butra and Septimius
are coming, and I hope Sabinus. Just send a line to say whom you would
like to have besides. Bring friends if you choose, but the weather is
hot, and we must not overcrowd the rooms." It all sounds delightful,
except perhaps the mess of greens; but a good Italian cook can make
vegetables tempting down to the present day. I think we should all have
loved to be there, as at the neat repast of Attic taste with wine, which
tempted virtuous Laurence to sup with Milton. So should we like to know
what called forth this pretty piece of moralizing, addressed to the
poet Tibullus (Ep. I, iv). He was handsome, prosperous, popular, yet
melancholy. Horace affectionately reproves him. "Dear Albius," he says,
using the intimate fore-name, "Dear Albius, tell me what you are about
in your pretty villa: writing delicate verses, strolling in your forest
glades, with thoughts and fancies I am sure all that a good man's should
be? What can you want besides the beauty, wealth, full purse, and seemly
household which the gods have given you? Dear friend, I tell you what
you want, contentment with the present hour. Try and imagine that each
day which dawns upon you is your last; then each succeeding day will
come unexpected and delightful. I practise what I preach: come and take
a look at me; you will find me contented, sleek, and plump, 'the fattest
little pig in Epicurus' sty.'" And he impresses the same lesson on
another friend, Bullatius, who was for some reason restless at home and
sought relief in travel. "What ails you to scamper over Asia or voyage
among the Isles of Greece? Sick men travel for health, but you are well.
Sad men travel for change, but change diverts not sadness, yachts and
chaises bring no happiness; their skies they change, but not their souls
who cross the sea. Enjoy the to-day, dear friend, which God has given
you, the place where God has placed you: a Little Pedlington is cheerful
if the mind be free from care" (Ep. I, xi).

His great friend Fuscus twits him, as Will Honeycomb twitted Mr.
Spectator, with his passion for a country life (Ep. I, x). "You are a
Stoic," Horace says, "your creed is to live according to Nature. Do you
expect to find her in the town or in the country? whether of the two
yields more peaceful nights and sweeter sleep? is a marble floor more
refreshing to the eyes than a green meadow? water poured through leaden
pipes purer than the crystal spring? Even amid your Corinthian columns
you plant trees and shrubs; though you drive out Nature she will silently
return and supplant your fond caprices. Do interpose a little ease and
recreation amid the money-grubbing which confines you to the town. Money
should be the servant, not the queen, the captive, not the conqueror.
If you want to see a happy man, come to me in the country. I have only
one thing wanting to perfect happiness, my desire for your society."
Two longer letters are written to his young friend Lollius (Ep. I, ii,
xviii). The first is a study of Homer, which he has been reading in the
country. In the "Iliad" he is disgusted by the reckless selfishness of
the leaders; in the hero of the "Odyssey" he sees a model of patient,
wise endurance, and impresses the example on his friend. It is curious
that the great poet of one age, reading the greater poet of another,
should fasten his attention, not on the poetry, but on the ethics of his
predecessor. The remaining letter is called out by Lollius' appointment
as confidential secretary to some man of great consequence; an office
such as Horace himself declined when offered by Augustus. The post,
he says, is full of difficulty, and endangering to self-respect: the
servility it exacts will be intolerable to a man so truthful, frank, and
independent as his friend. Let him decline it; or, if committed, get out
of it as soon as possible.

Epistles there are without a moral purpose, called forth by some
special occasion. He sends his "Odes" by one Asella for presentation
to Augustus, punning on the name, as representing an Ass laden with
manuscripts (Ep. I, xiii). The fancy was carried out by Pope in his
frontispiece to the "Dunciad." Then his doctor tells him to forsake
Baiae as a winter health resort, and he writes to one Vala, who lives in
southern Italy, inquiring as to the watering places lower down the coast
(Ep. I, xv). He must have a place where the bread is good and the water
pure; the wine generous and mellow; in the market wild boars and hares,
sea-urchins and fine fish. He can live simply at home, but is sick
now and wants cherishing, that he may come back fat as one of the
Phaeacians--luxurious subjects, we remember, of King Alcinous in the
"Odyssey,"

  Good food we love, and music, and the dance,
  Garments oft changed, warm baths, and restful beds.

  Odyssey, viii, 248.


Julius Florus, poet and orator, presses him to write more lyrics
(Ep. II, ii). For many reasons, no, he answers. I no longer want money.
I am getting old. Lyrics are out of fashion. No one can write in Rome.
I have become fastidious. His sketch of the ideal poet is believed to
portray the writings of his friend Virgil. It is nobly paraphrased
by Pope:

  But how severely with themselves proceed
  The men, who write such verse as we can read!
  Their own strict judges, not a word they spare,
  That wants or force, or light, or weight, or care;
  Pour the full tide of eloquence along,
  Serenely pure, and yet divinely strong;
  Prune the luxuriant, the uncouth refine,
  But show no mercy to an empty line;
  Then polish all with so much life and ease,
  You think 'tis nature, and a knack to please;
  But ease in writing flows from art, not chance,
  As those move easiest who have learned to dance.


The "Epistle to Augustus" (Ep. II, i) was written (page 28) at the
Emperor's request. After some conventional compliments it passes to a
criticism of Latin poetry past and present; comparing, like Swift's
"Battle of the Books," the merits of the contemporary and of the older
masters. There is a foolish mania just now, he says, for admiring our
older poets, not because they are good, but because they are old. The
origin and development of Roman poetry made it certain that perfection
must come late. He assumes that Augustus champions the moderns, and
compliments him on the discernment which preferred a Virgil and a Varius
(and so, by implication, a Horace) to the Plautuses and Terences of the
past.

The "Art of Poetry" is thought to be an unfinished work. Unmethodical
and without proportion, it may have been either compiled clumsily
after the poet's death, or put together carelessly by himself amid
the indolence which grows sometimes upon old age. It declares the
essentials of poetry to be unity of conception and ingenuity of diction,
urges that mechanical correctness must be inspired by depth of feeling,
gives technical rules of dramatic action, of the chorus, of metre.
For matter such as this a Horace was not needed, but the felicity of
its handling has made it to many Horatian students the most popular of
his conversational works. It abounds in passages of finished beauty; such
as his comparison of verbal novelties imported into a literature with
the changing forest leaves; his four ages of humanity--the childish,
the adolescent, the manly, the senile--borrowed from Aristotle, expanded
by Shakespeare, and taken up by Keats; his comparison of Poetry to
Painting; his delineation of an honest critic. Brief phrases which
have become classical abound. The "purple patch" sewn on to a sober
narrative; the wine jar turning to a pitcher as the potter's wheel
revolves; the injunction to keep a book ten years before you publish
it; the near kinship of terseness to obscurity; the laughable outcome
of a mountain's labour; the warning to be chary of bringing gods upon
the stage; the occasional nod of Homer;--are commonplace citations so
crisp and so exhaustive in their Latin garb, that even the unlettered
scientist imports them into his treatises, sometimes with curious
effect.

[Illustration: _Alinari photo._] [_Uffizi Gallery, Florence._

AUGUSTUS.]

If for a full appreciation of these minor beauties a knowledge of the
Latin text is necessary, the more abounding charm of both Satires and
Epistles is accessible to the Latinless reader. For the bursts of poetry
are brief and rare, issuing from amid what Horace often reminds us are
essentially plain prose essays in conversational form, their hexametral
garb an unpoetical accident. Two versions present themselves to the
unclassical student. The first is Conington's scholarly rendering,
hampered sometimes rather than adorned by its metrical shape; the other
is the more recent construe of Dean Wickham, clear, flowing, readable,
stamping with the translator's high authority many a disputed passage.
Both set temptingly before English readers the Rome of Horace's day,
and promote them to an intimacy with his own mind, character, history.
Preferable to both, no doubt, are the "Imitations" of Pope, which do
not aim at literal transference, but work, as does his yet more famous
Homer, by melting down the original, and pouring the fused mass into
an English mould. Their background is Twit'nam and the Mall instead of
Tibur and the Forum; their Maecenas St. John, their Trebatius Fortescue,
their Numicius Murray. Where Horace appeals to Ennius and Attius,
they cite Shakespeare and Cowley; while the forgotten wits, worthies,
courtiers, spendthrifts of Horatian Rome reappear as Lord Hervey or Lady
Mary, as Shippen, Chartres, Oldfield, Darteneuf; and Horace's delicate
flattery of a Roman Emperor is travestied with diabolical cleverness
into bitter mockery of an English king. In these easy and polished
metamorphoses we have Pope at his very best; like Horace, an epitome
of his time, bearing the same relation, as patriot, scholar, worldling,
epicurean, poet, satirist, to the London of Queen Anne, which Horace
bore to the Augustan capital; and so reproducing in an English garb
something at any rate of the exotic flavour of his original. In an
age when Pope is undeservedly and disastrously neglected, I shall do
well to present some few Horatian samples from the king-poet of his
century; by whose wit and finish, unsurpassed if not unequalled in our
literature, the taste of my own contemporaries was formed; and to whom
a public which decries or ignores him pays homage every day, by quoting
from him unconsciously oftener than from anyone except Shakespeare.

Here is a specimen from the Satires, heightening our interest in
Horace's picture by its adaptation to familiar English characters. Great
Scipio and Laelius, says Horace (Sat. II, i, 72), could unbend their
dignity to trifle and even to romp with Lucilius. Says Pope of his own
Twickenham home:

  Know, all the distant din that world can keep
  Rolls o'er my Grotto, and but sooths my sleep.
  There my retreat the best Companions grace,
  Chiefs out of war, and Statesmen out of place.
  There St. John mingles with my friendly bowl
  The feast of reason and the flow of soul:
  And he, whose lightning pierced the Iberian lines,
  Now forms my Quincunx and now ranks my vines,
  Or tames the genius of the stubborn plain,
  Almost as quickly as he conquered Spain.


That Naevius is no longer read (Ep. II, i, 53) affects us slightly, for
of Naevius we know nothing; Pope substitutes a writer known and admired
still:

  Who now reads Cowley? if he pleases yet,
  His moral pleases, not his pointed wit;
  Forget his Epic, nay, Pindaric art,
  But still I love the language of his heart.


Horace tells how the old rough Saturnian measure gave way to later
elegance (Ep. II, i, 157). Pope aptly introduces these fine resonant
lines:

  Waller's was smooth; but Dryden taught to join
  The varying verse, the full resounding line,
  The long majestic march, and energy divine.


Horace claims for poetry that it lifts the mind from the coarse and
sensual to the imaginative and pure (Ep. II, i, 128). Pope illustrates
by a delightful compliment to moral Addison, with just one little flick
of the lash to show that he remembered their old quarrel:

  In our own day (excuse some courtly stains),
  No whiter page than Addison's remains.
  He from the taste obscene reclaims our youth,
  And sets the passions on the side of Truth;
  Forms the soft bosom with the gentlest art,
  And pours each human virtue in the heart.


Horace, speaking of an old comic poet, Livius (Ep. II, i, 69), whom he
had been compelled to read at school, is indignant that a single neat
line or happy phrase should preserve an otherwise contemptible
composition. This is Pope's expansion:

  But, for the wits of either Charles' days,
  The mob of gentlemen who wrote with ease,
  Sprat, Carew, Sedley, and a hundred more,
  Like twinkling stars the Miscellanies o'er,
  One simile, that solitary shines
  In the dry desert of a thousand lines,
  Or lengthened thought that gleams through many a page,
  Has sanctified whole poems for an age.


Horace paints the University don as he had seen him emerging from his
studious seclusion to walk the streets of Athens, absent, meditative,
moving the passers-by to laughter (Ep. II, ii, 81). Pope carries him
to Oxford:

  The man, who, stretched in Isis' calm retreat,
  To books and study gives seven years complete;
  See, strowed with learned dust, his nightcap on,
  He walks, an object new beneath the sun.
  The boys flock round him, and the people stare;
  So stiff, so mute! some statue you would swear,
  Stept from its pedestal to take the air.


Finally, Horace extols the poet as distinct from the mere versifier
(Ep. II, i, 210). Pope's rendering ought to dispel the plea of an
unfeelingness sometimes lightly urged against him:

  Let me for once presume to instruct the times
  To know the Poet from the Man of Rhymes:
  'Tis he, who gives my breast a thousand pains,
  Can make me feel each passion that he feigns,
  Enrage, compose, with more than magic art,
  With pity and with terror tear my heart;
  And snatch me o'er the earth or through the air,
  To Thebes, to Athens, when he will, and where.


If only he had handled more! but of the forty-one Conversations Pope
imitated only seven. And so to assimilate those remaining we must
descend from the heights of poetry to the cool sequestered vale of
literal masquerade. To a lady wintering in Rome who consulted me lately
as to guide-books, I ventured to recommend Hawthorne's "Transformation,"
Marion Crawford's "Ave Roma," and Dean Wickham's translation of the
Satires and Epistles.



ODES AND EPODES


I have tried to interpret in some degree the teaching of the Satires
and Epistles. Yet had the author's genius found expression in these
Conversations only, he would not have become through nineteen centuries
the best beloved of Latin poets: beloved in his own time alike by the
weary Atlas Augustus and the refined sensualist Maecenas; "playing round
the heartstrings" of the stern censor Persius; endowed by Petronius and
Quintilian with the prize of incommunicable felicity; the darling of
Dante, Montaigne, Voltaire, Chesterfield; the "old popular Horace" of
Tennyson; the Horace whose "sad earnestness and vivid exactness" pierced
the soul and brain of aged John Henry Newman. "His poems," says a great
French critic (St. Beuve, "Horace"), "form a manual of good taste, of
poetic feeling, of practical and worldly wisdom. The Christian has his
Bible; the scholar his Homer; Port Royal lived on St. Augustine; an
earlier philosophy on Montaigne; Horace comes within the range of all:
in reading him we break not in any way with modernity, yet retain our
hold upon antiquity. I know nothing more delightful as one grows in
years, when the mind retains its subtlety, but is conscious of increasing
languor, than to test the one and brace the other by companionship
with a book familiar and frequently re-read: we walk thereby with a
supporting staff, stroll leaning upon a friendly arm. This is what
Horace does for us: coming back to him in our old age, we recover our
youthful selves, and are relieved to learn while we appreciate afresh
his well-remembered lines, that if our minds have become more inert,
they are also more feeling, than of yore."

For full justification of these graceful amenities we must turn to the
lyrical poems. The Satires and Epistles, as their author frequently
reminds us, were in prose: the revealed Horatian secret, the condensed
expression of the Horatian charm, demanded musical verse; and this we
have in the Odes and Epodes. The word Ode is Greek for a Song; Epode was
merely a metrical term to express an ode which alternated in longer and
shorter lines, and we may treat them all alike as Odes. The Epodes are
amongst his earliest publications, and bear signs of a 'prentice hand.
"Iambi," he calls them, a Greek word meaning "lampoons"; and six of them
are bitter personal attacks on individuals, foreign to the good breeding
and urbanity which distinguish his later writings. More of the same
class he is believed to have suppressed, retaining these as specimens
of that earlier style, and because, though inchoate, they won the
admiration of Virgil, and preferred their author to the patronage of
Maecenas. One of the finer Epodes (Epod. ix) has peculiar interest, as
written probably on the deck of Maecenas' galley during or immediately
after the battle of Actium; and is in that case the sole extant
contemporary record of the engagement. It reflects the loathing kindled
in Roman breasts by Antony's emasculate subjugation to his paramour;
imagines with horror a dissolute Egyptian harlot triumphant and supreme
in Rome, with her mosquito-curtained beds and litters, and her train of
wrinkled eunuchs. It describes with a spectator's accuracy the desertion
of the Gallic contingent during the battle, the leftward flight of
Antony's fleet: then, with his favourite device of lapsing from
high-wrought passion into comedy, Horace bewails his own sea-sickness
when the excitement of the fight is over, and calls for cups of wine to
quell it. In another Epode (Epod. ii) he recalls his boyish memories in
praise of country life: the vines wedded to poplars in the early spring,
after that the sheepshearing, later still the grape-gathering and honey
harvest; when winter comes, the hunting of the boar by day, at night the
cheery meal with wife and children upon olives, sorrel, mallows, beside
the crackling log-piled hearth. Even here he is not weaned from the
tricks of mocking irony manifest in his early writings and born perhaps
of his early struggles; for he puts this delicious pastoral, which
tinkles through the page like Milton's "L'Allegro," into the mouth of a
Roman capitalist, who, bitten by transient passion for a country life,
calls in all his money that he may buy a farm, pines in country
retirement for the Stock Exchange, sells his estate in quick disgust,
and returns to city life:

  So said old Ten-per-cent, when he
  A jolly farmer fain would be.
  His moneys he called in amain--
  Next week he put them out again.


is the spirited rendering of Mr. Goldwin Smith.

In his remaining Epodes we may trace the germ of his later written
Odes. We have the affectionate addresses to Maecenas, the disgust at
civil discords, the cheery invitations to the wine cup, the wooing
of some coy damsel. By and by Maecenas presses him to bring them out
completed in a volume, and he pleads a fugitive amour in excuse for his
delay. Published, however, they were, notwithstanding the distractions
of Neaera; went, neatly written out in red-lined columns, to the
brothers Sosii in the street called Argiletum, to be multiplied by the
librarian's scribes on well-bleached Egyptian papyrus, bound in pumiced
parchment, stored in metal boxes on the bookseller's shelves within,
while the names of the author and his work were inscribed upon a pillar
outside the shop, as a guide to intending purchasers. Copies were sold,
probably, for a few denarii each; what would we not give for one of them
to-day? Let us hope that their author was well paid.

Horace was now thirty-five years old: the Epodes had taught him his
power over lyric verse. He had imitated at first the older Roman
satirists; here by Maecenas' advice he copied from Greek models, from
Alcaeus and Sappho, claiming ever afterwards with pride that he was
the first amongst Roman poets to wed Aeolian lays to notes of Italy
(Od. III, xxx, 13). He spent seven years in composing the first three
Books of the Odes, which appeared in a single volume about B.C. 23.
More than any of his poems they contain the essence of his indefinable
magic art. They deal apparently with dull truisms and stale moralities,
avowals of simple joys and simple sorrows. They tell us that life is
brief and death is sure, that light loves and ancient wines are good,
that riches are burdensome, and enough is better than a feast, that
country life is delightful, that old age comes on us apace, that our
friends leave us sorrowing and our sorrow does not bring them back.
Trite sayings no doubt; but embellished one and all with an adorable
force and novelty at once sadly earnest and vividly exact; not too
simple for the profound and not too artful for the shallow; consecrated
by the verbal felicity which belongs only to an age of peculiar
intellectual refinement, and which flashed diamond-like from the facets
of his own highly polished mind. "He is the Breviary of the natural man,
his poetry is the Imitation not of Christ but of Epicurus."

His Odes may be roughly classified as Religious, Moral, Philosophical,
Personal, Amatory.

1. RELIGIOUS. Between the classic and the Christian hymn, as Matthew
Arnold has reminded us, there is a great gulf fixed. The Latin
conception of the gods was civic; they were superior heads of the
Republic; the Roman church was the invisible Roman state; religion was
merely exalted patriotism. So Horace's addresses to the deities for
the most part remind them of their coronation oaths, of the terms on
which they were worshipped, their share in the bargain with humanity,
a bargain to be kept on their side if they expected tribute of lambs and
piglings, of hallowed cakes and vervain wreaths. Very little of what we
call devotion seasons them. In two Odes (I, ii, xii), from a mere litany
of Olympian names he passes to a much more earnest deification of
Augustus. Another (III, xix) is a grace to Bacchus after a wine-bout.
Or Faunus is bidden to leave pursuing the nymphs (we think of Elijah's
sneer at Baal) and to attend to his duties on the Sabine farm, of
blessing the soil and protecting the lambs (III, xviii). The hymn to
Mercury recounts mythical exploits of the winged god, his infantile
thefts from Apollo, his guiding Priam through the Grecian camp, his
gift of speech to men, his shepherding souls to Hades (I, x). Venus is
invoked in a dainty prayer to visit the chapel which Glycera is building
for her (I, xxx):

  O come, and with thee bring thy glowing boy,
    The Graces all, with kirtles flowing free,
  Youth, that without thee knows but little joy,
    The jocund nymphs and blithesome Mercury.


The doctrine of an overruling Providence Horace had expressly rejected
in the Satires (Sat. iv, 101), holding that the gods are too happy and
too careless in their superior aloof security to plague themselves with
the affairs of mortals. But he felt sometimes, as all men feel, the need
of a supreme celestial Guide: in the noble Ode which Ruskin loved he
seems to find it in Necessity or Fortune (Od. I, xxxv); and once, when
scared by thunder resounding in a cloudless sky, recants what he calls
his "irrational rationalism," and admits that God may, if He will, put
down the mighty and exalt the low (I, xxxiv). So again in his hymn for
the dedication of Apollo's Temple on the Palatine (I, xxxi) a serious
note is struck. He will not ask the God for rich cornfields and fat
meadow land, for wines of Cales proffered in a golden cup. A higher boon
than these his prayer demands:

  O grant me, Phoebus, calm content,
    Strength unimpaired, a mind entire,
  Old age without dishonour spent,
    Nor unbefriended of the lyre.


On the other hand, his Ode to Melpomene (IV, iii), written in the
consciousness of accepted eminence as the national poet, "harpist of the
Roman lyre," breathes a sentiment of gratitude to Divinity far above the
typical poetic cant of homage to the Muse. And his fine Secular Hymn,
composed by Augustus's request for the great Century Games, strikes a
note of patriotic aspiration and of moral earnestness, not unworthy to
compare with King Solomon's Dedication Prayer; and is such as, with some
modernization of the Deities invoked, would hardly misbecome a national
religious festival to-day. It was sung by twenty-seven noble boys and as
many high-born maidens, now in antiphon, now in chorus, to Apollo and
Diana, as representing all the gods. Apollo, bless our city! say the
boys. Dian, bless our women and our children, say the girls, and guard
the sanctity of our marriage laws. Bring forth Earth's genial fruits,
say both; give purity to youth and peace to age. Bring back the lapsed
virtues of the Golden Age; Faith, Honour, antique Shame-fastness and
Worth, and Plenty with her teeming horn. Hear, God! hear, Goddess! Yes,
we feel our prayers are heard--

    Now homeward we repair,
  Full of the blessed hope which will not fail,
    That Jove and all the gods have heard our prayer,
  And with approving smiles our homage hail:
    We, skilled in choral harmonies to raise
    The hymn to Phoebus and Diana's praise.


Of course in all this there is no touch of ecstasy; no spark of the
inspiration which in a St. Francis, a St. Teresa, or a Charles Wesley,
scales the heights of hymnody. And, as the unimaginative Roman
temperament lacked the instinct of adoration, so was it deficient in
that other constituent of supernatural faith, the belief in immortality.
There might be a shadowy world--the poets said so--Odysseus visited its
depths and brought back its report--but it was a gloomy place at best.
Horace alludes to it always in the tone of the Hebrew Psalmists, or of
Hezekiah sick to death, utilizing Minos and Cerberus and Tantalus and
Sisyphus for poetic effect, yet ever with an undertone of sadness and
alarm. Not Orpheus' self, he says (I, xxiv, 13), in his exquisite lament
for dead Quinctilius, can bring back life-blood to the phantom pale
who has joined the spectral band that voyage to Styx: the gods are
pitiless--we can only bear bereavements patiently (II, iii). You must
leave, my Dellius, your pleasant groves and your cottage upon Tiber's
banks, since Orcus, ruthless king, swoops equally on all:

  Land, home, and winsome wife must all be left;
      And cypresses abhorred,
      Alone of all the trees
      That now your fancy please,
  Shall shade his dust who was awhile their lord.

  (II, xiv, 21.)


2. MORAL. But if the gods are beyond our ken, and if the world to come
is misty, we still have this world with us; a world not always to be
daffed aside with love and wine and comradeship, since behind its frolic
wantonness lie the ennobling claims of duty and of conscience. As with
Fielding, as with Thackeray, the light current tone of sportiveness or
irony heightens the rare solemnity of didactic moral earnestness. Of all
the Latin poets, says Sir Richard Fanshaw, Horace is the fullest fraught
with excellent morality. In the six stately Odes which open the third
book, together with a later Ode (xxiv) which closes the series and ought
never to have been severed from it, Horatian poetry rises to its
greatest height of ethical impressiveness. Ushered in with the solemn
words of a hierophant bidding the uninitiated avaunt at the commencement
of a religious ceremony (III, i, 1-2), delivered with official
assumption in the fine frenzy of a muse-inspired priest, their unity
of purpose and of style makes them virtually a continuous poem. It
lashes the vices and the short-sighted folly of society; with the Sword
of Damocles above his head the rich man sits at a luxurious board
(III, i, 17); sails in his bronzed galley, lolls in his lordly chariot,
with black Care ever at the helm or on the box (III, i, 40). By
hardihood in the field and cheerful poverty at home Rome became great
of yore; such should be the virtues of to-day. Let men be _moral_; it
was immorality that ruined Troy; _heroic_--read the tale of Regulus;
_courageous_, but with courage ordered, disciplined, controlled (III,
iii; v; iv, 65). Brute force without mind, he says almost in Milton's
words, falls by its own strength, as the giants fell encountering the
gods:

  For what is strength without a double share
  Of wisdom? vast, unwieldy, burdensome;
  Proudly secure, yet liable to fall
  By weakest subtleties, not made to rule,
  But to subserve where wisdom bears command.

  ("Samson Ag.," 53.)


Self-discipline, he reminds his audience, need not be sullen and
austere; in regenerated Rome the Muses still may rule. Mild thoughts
they plant, and they joy to see mild thoughts take root; refinement
of manners and of mind, and the gladsomeness of literary culture
(III, iv, 41).

He turns to reprove the ostentation of the rich; their adding field to
field, poor families evicted from farmstead and cottage to make way for
spreading parks and ponds and gardens;

                      driven from home
  Both wife and husband forth must roam,
  Bearing their household gods close pressed,
  With squalid babes, upon their breast.

  (II, xviii, 23.)


Not thus was it in the good old times. Then rich men lavished marble on
the temples of the gods, roofed their own cottages with chance-cut turf
(II, xv, 13). And to what end all this splendour? Behind your palace
walls lurks the grim architect of a narrower home; the path of glory
leads but to the grave (II, xviii, 17). And as on the men, so on the
women of Rome his solemn warnings are let fall. Theirs is the task to
maintain the sacred family bond, the purity of marriage life. Let them
emulate the matrons of the past, severe mothers of gallant sons (III,
vi, 37). Let men and women join to stay the degeneracy which has begun
to set in, and which, unchecked, will grow deadlier with each generation
as it succeeds.

  How Time doth in its flight debase
  Whate'er it finds? our fathers' race,
    More deeply versed in ill
  Than were their sires, hath born us yet
  More wicked, destined to beget
    A race more vicious still.

  (III, vi, 45.)


3. PHILOSOPHICAL. "How charming is divine philosophy?" said the meek
younger brother in "Comus" to his instructive senior. Speaking as one
of the profane, I find not less charming the humanist philosophy of
Horace. Be content! be moderate! seize the present! are his maxims.

_Be content!_ A mind without anxiety is the highest good (II, xvi).
Great desires imply great wants (III, xvi, 42). 'Tis well when prayer
seeks and obtains no more than life requires.

        Happy he,
  Self-centred, who each night can say,
  "My life is lived": the morn may see
  A clouded or a sunny day:
  That rests with Jove; but what is gone
  He will not, can not, turn to nought,
  Nor cancel as a thing undone
  What once the flying hour has brought.

  (III, xxix, 41.)


_Be moderate!_ He that denies himself shall gain the more (III, xvi,
21). He that ruleth his spirit is better than the lord of Carthage.
Hold fast the golden mean (II, x, 5). The poor man's supper, spare
but neat and free from care, with no state upon the board except his
heirloom silver saltcellar, is better than a stalled ox and care
therewith (II, xvi, 13). And he practised what he preached, refusing
still fresh bounties which Maecenas pressed upon him. What more want
I than I have? he says:

    Truth is mine with genius mixed,
  The rich man comes and knocks at my poor gate.
    Favoured thus I ne'er repine,
  Nor weary Heaven for more, nor to the great
    For larger bounty pray,
  My Sabine farm my one sufficient boon.

(II, xviii, 9.)


_Seize the Present!_ _Now_ bind the brow with late roses and with myrtle
crowns; now drown your cares in wine, counting as gain each day that
Chance may give (I, vii, 31; I, ix, 14). Pale Death will be here anon;
even while I speak time slips away: seize to-day, trust nothing to the
morrow.

  Ah, my Beloved, fill the cup that clears
  _To-day_ of past regrets and future fears:
  _To-morrow?_ why to-morrow I may be
  Myself with yesterday's seven thousand years.


What more commonplace than this saying that we all must die? but he
brings it home to us ever and again with pathetic tearful fascinating
force. Each time we read him, his sweet sad pagan music chants its ashes
to ashes, dust to dust, and we hear the earth fall upon the coffin lid
amongst the flowers.

  Ah, Postumus, they fleet away
    Our years, nor piety one hour
  Can win from wrinkles, and decay,
    And death's indomitable power;

  Not though three hundred steers you heap
    Each day, to glut the tearless eyes
  Of Him, who guards in moated keep
    Tityos, and Geryon's triple size:

  All, all, alas! that watery bound
    Who eat the fruits that Nature yields,
  Must traverse, be we monarchs crowned,
    Or humblest tillers of the fields.

  (II, xiv.)


The antipathy is not confined to heathenism; we distrust the Christian
who professes to ignore it; many of us felt drawn by a brotherhood of
humanity to the late scholarly Pope, when we learned that, as death
looked him in the face, he clung to Pagan Horace as a truthful and
sympathetic oracle. "And we all go to-day to this singer of the ancient
world for guidance in the deceptions of life, and for steadfastness in
the face of death."

[Illustration: _Alinari photo._]

[_Capitol Museum, Rome._

VIRGIL.]

4. PERSONAL. Something, but not very much, we learn of Horace's intimates
from this class of Odes. Closest to him in affection and oftenest
addressed is Maecenas. The opening Ode pays homage to him in words
closely imitated by Allan Ramsay in addressing the chief of his clan:

  Dalhousie of an auld descent,
  My chief, my stoup, my ornament;


and at the end of the volume the poet repeats his dedication (III,
xxix). Twice he invites his patron to a feast; to drink wine bottled on
the day some years before when entering the theatre after an illness
he was received with cheers by the assembled multitude (I, xx); again
on March 1st, kept as the festal anniversary of his own escape from a
falling tree (III, viii). To a querulous letter from his friend written
when sick and dreading death, he sends the tender consolation and
remonstrance of which we spoke before (p. 29). In a very different tone
he sings the praises of Licymnia (II, xii), supposed to be Terentia,
Maecenas' newly-wedded wife, sweet voiced, witty, loving, of whom her
husband was at the time passionately enamoured. He recounts finally, with
that delicate respectful gratitude which never lapses into servility,
his lifelong obligation, lauding gratefully the still removed place which
his friend's bounty has bestowed:

  A clear fresh stream, a little field, o'ergrown
  With shady trees, a crop that ne'er deceives.

  (III, xvi, 29.)


Not less tenderly affectionate is the exquisite Ode to Virgil on the
death of Quinctilius.

  By many a good man wept Quinctilius dies,
  By none than you, my Virgil, trulier wept;

  (I, xxiv.)


or to his devoted young friend Septimius (p. 39) (II, vi), who would
travel with him to the ends of the world, to Moorish or Cantabrian
wilds. Not so far afield need they go; but when age steals on they will
journey to Tarentum, sweetest spot on earth:

  That spot, those happy heights, desire
    Our sojourn; there, when life shall end,
  Your tear shall dew my yet warm pyre,
    Your bard and friend.


To the great general Agrippa (I, vi), rival of Maecenas in the good
graces of Augustus, he sends a tribute complimentary, yet somewhat
stiffly and officially conceived; lines much more cordial to the
high-born Aelius Lamia (III, 17), whose statue stands to-day amid the
pale immortalities of the Capitoline Museum. We have a note of tonic
banter to Tibullus, "jilted by a fickle Glycera," and "droning piteous
elegies" (I, xxxiii); a merry riotous impersonation of an imaginary
symposium in honour of the newly-made augur Murena (III, 19), with
toasts and tipsiness and noisy Bacchanalian songs and rose-wreaths flung
about the board; a delicious mockery of reassurance to one Xanthias (II,
iv), who has married a maidservant and is ashamed of it. He may yet find
out that though fallen into obscurity she is in truth high-born and
noble, and will present him with a patrician mother-in-law.

  For aught that you know now, fair Phyllis may be
    The shoot of some highly respectable stem;
  Nay, she counts, I'll be sworn, a few kings in her tree,
    And laments the lost acres once lorded by them.

  Never think that a creature so exquisite grew
    In the haunts where but vice and dishonour are known,
  Nor deem that a girl so unselfish, so true,
    Had a mother 'twould shame thee to take for thine own.


Several of his correspondents we can only name; the poet Valgius,
the tragedians Pollio and Fuscus; Sallust, grandson of the historian;
Pompeius, his old comrade in the Brutus wars; Lollius, defeated in
battle and returning home in disgrace. Nor need we labour to identify a
host of others; Iccius, Grosphus, Dellius; who figure as mere dedicatory
names; nor persons mentioned casually, such as Telephus of the rosy neck
and clustering hair (I, xiii; III, xix), whom Bulwer Lytton, with fine
memories of his own ambrosial petted youth, calls a "typical beautyman
and lady-killer." The Horatian personages, remarks Dean Milman, would
contain almost every famous name of the Augustan age.

5. AMATORY. "Speak'st thou of nothing but ladies?" says Feste the Jester
to poor Malvolio. He might have said the same to Horace; for of the Odes
in the first three Books one third part is addressed to or concerned
with women. How many of the pretty female names which musicalize his
love songs, in syllables that breathe of the sweet south and melt like
kisses in the utterance, are representative of real girls, we cannot
guess; with none of them except perhaps one, who died young, does he
seem to have been really in love. He was forty years old when most
of his amorous Odes were written; an age at which, as George Eliot
has reminded us, the baptism of passion is by aspersion rather than
immersion. Something he must have known of love, or he could not write
as he has done; but it is the superficial gallantry of a flirt rather
than the impassioned self-surrender of a lover; of a gay bachelor, with
roving critical eye, heart whole yet fancy free, too practised a judge
of beauty to become its slave. Without emotion, without reverence, but
with keen relishing appreciation, he versifies Pyrrha's golden curls,
and Lycoris' low forehead--feminine beauties both to a Roman eye--and
Phyllis' tapering arms and shapely ankles, and Chia's dimpled cheek,
and the tangles of Neaera's hair, and the gadabout baggage Lyde,
and Glycera's dazzling complexion that blinds the gazer's eye
(I, v, xix, xxxiii; II, iv, 21; III, xiv, 21). They are all inconstant
good-for-noughts, he knows; but so are men, and so is he; keep up the
pleasant give-and-take, the quarrels and the reconciliations. All the
youths of Rome are in love with a beautiful Ninon D'Enclos named
Barine--Matthew Arnold declared this to be the finest of all the Odes
(II, viii)--she perjures herself with every one in turn. But it seems to
answer; she shines forth lovelier than ever. Venus and the nymphs only
laugh, and her lovers, young and old, continue to hug their chains.

  New captives fill the nets you weave;
    New slaves are bred; and those before,
  Though oft they threaten, never leave
    Your perjured door.


Sometimes he plays the monitor. Asterie's husband is laid up in Greece
by contrary winds: he is faithful to his wife, though his hostess tempts
him: let the wife be on her guard against her handsome neighbour Enipeus
(III, vii). His own charmers are sometimes obdurate: Chloe and Lyde run
away from him like fawns (I, xxiii): that is because they are young; he
can wait till they are older; they will come to him then of themselves:
"they always come," says Disraeli in "Henrietta Temple." He has
quarrelled with an old flame (I, xvi), whom he had affronted by some
libellous verses. He entreats her pardon; was young and angry when he
wrote; will burn the offending lines, or fling them into the sea:

  Come, let me change my sour for sweet,
    And smile complacent as before;
  Hear me my palinode repeat,
    And give me back your heart once more.


He professes bitter jealousy of a handsome stripling whose beauty Lydia
praises (I, xiii). She is wasting her admiration; she will find him
unfaithful; Horace knows him well:

  Oh, trebly blest, and blest for ever,
    Are they, whom true affection binds,
  In whom no doubts nor janglings sever
    The union of their constant minds;
  But life in blended current flows,
    Serene and sunny to the close.


If anyone now reads "Lalla Rookh," he will recall an exquisite rendering
of these lines from the lips of veiled Nourmahal:

  There's a bliss beyond all that the minstrel has told,
    When two, that are linked in one heavenly tie,
  With heart never changing and brow never cold,
    Love on through all ills, and love on till they die.

  One hour of a passion so sacred is worth
    Whole ages of heartless and wandering bliss;
  And oh! if there be an Elysium on earth,
      It is this, it is this!


But, perhaps, if a jury of scholars could be polled as to the most
enchanting amongst all Horace's lovesongs, the highest vote would be
cast in favour of the famous "Reconciliation" of the roving poet with
this or with some other Lydia (III, ix). The pair of former lovers,
mutually faithless, exchange defiant experience of their several
infidelities; then, the old affection reviving through the contact of
their altercation, agree to discard their intervening paramours, and
return to their first allegiance.

  _He._

  Whilst I was dear and thou wert kind,
    And I, and I alone, might lie
  Upon thy snowy breast reclined,
    Not Persia's king so blest as I.

  _She._

  Whilst I to thee was all in all,
    Nor Chloe might with Lydia vie,
  Renowned in ode or madrigal,
    Not Roman Ilia famed as I.

  _He._

  I now am Thracian Chloe's slave,
    With hand and voice that charms the air,
  For whom even death itself I'd brave,
    So fate the darling girl would spare.

  _She._

  I dote on Calais; and I
    Am all his passion, all his care,
  For whom a double death I'd die,
    So fate the darling boy would spare.

  _He._

  What if our ancient love return,
    And bind us with a closer tie,
  If I the fair-haired Chloe spurn,
    And, as of old, for Lydia sigh?

  _She._

  Though lovelier than yon star is he,
    Thou fickle as an April sky,
  More churlish too than Adria's sea,
    With thee I'd live, with thee I'd die.


The austere Scaliger used to say that he would rather have written this
ode than be King of Spain and the Indies: Milton's Eve expresses her
devotion to Adam in an apostrophe paraphrased from its closing lines.

Observe, too, how we find in all the Odes as we read them, not only a
gallery of historical pictures, nor only an unconscious revelation of
the poet's self, of, that is, the least subjective among poets, ever, as
says Sir Stephen De Vere, looking outward, never looking in; but they
incidentally paint for us in vivid and familiarizing tints the intimate
daily life of that far-off ancient queen of cities. We walk with them
the streets of Rome. We watch the connoisseurs gazing into the curiosity
shops and fingering the bronzes or the silver statuettes; the naughty
boys jeering the solemn Stoic as he walks along, staid, superior,
absent; the good boys coming home from school with well-thumbed lesson
books; the lovers in the cookshops or restaurants shooting apple pips
from between finger and thumb, rejoicing in the good omen if they strike
the ceiling; the stores of Sulpicius the wine merchant and of Sosius the
bookseller; the great white Latian ox, exactly such as you see to-day,
driven towards the market, with a bunch of hay upon his horns to warn
pedestrians that he is dangerous; the coarse drawings in chalk or
colours on the wall advertising some famous gladiator; at dusk the
whispering lovers in the Campus, or the romping hide-and-seek of lads
and lasses at the corners of the streets or squares, just as you may
watch them to-day on spring or winter evenings amongst the lower arches
of the Colosseum;--it is a microcosm, a cameo, of that old-world life.
Horace knew, and feared not to say, that in his poems, in his Odes
especially, he bequeathed a deathless legacy to mankind, while setting
up a lasting monument to himself. One thing he could not know, that when
near two thousand years had passed, a race of which he had barely heard
by name as dwelling "quite beyond the confines of the world," would
cherish his name and read his writings with a grateful appreciation
even surpassing that of his contemporary Romans.

A few Odes remain, too casual to be classified; rejoicings over the
vanishing of winter and the return of spring (I, iv); praises of the
Tibur streams, of Tarentum (II, vi) which he loved only less than Tibur,
of the Lucretilis Groves (I, xvii) which overhung his Sabine valley,
of the Bandusian spring beside which he played in boyhood. We have the
Pindaric or historic Odes, with tales of Troy, of the Danaid brides,
of Regulus, of Europa (III, iii, v, xi, xvii); the dramatic address to
Archytas (I, xxviii), which soothed the last moments of Mark Pattison;
the fine epilogue which ends the book, composed in the serenity of
gained renown;

  And now 'tis done: more durable than brass
    My monument shall be, and raise its head
  O'er royal pyramids: it shall not dread
  Corroding rain or angry Boreas,
  Nor the long lapse of immemorial time.
    I shall not wholly die; large residue
    Shall 'scape the Queen of funerals. Ever new
  My after fame shall grow, while pontiffs climb
  With silent maids the Capitolian height.
    "Born," men will say, "where Aufidus is loved,
  Where Danaus scant of streams beneath him bowed
  The rustic tribes, from dimness he waxed bright,
  First of his race to wed the Aeolian lay
    To notes of Italy." Put glory on,
    My own Melpomene, by genius won,
  And crown me of thy grace with Delphic bay.



SWAN SONG


When a well-graced actor has left the stage amid trumpeted farewells
from an admiring but regretful audience, we somewhat resent his
occasional later reappearance. So, when a poet's last word has been
spoken, and spoken emotionally, an Afterword is apt to offend: and we
may wish that the fine poem just quoted had been reserved as finish to
the volume yet to come, which lacks a closing note, or even that the
volume itself had not been published. The fourth Book of the Odes was
written nearly ten years after the other three, and Horace wrote it not
as Poet but as Laureate. His Secular Hymn appeared in B.C. 17, when
he was forty-eight years old; and after it Augustus pressed him to
celebrate the victories of his two stepsons, Drusus and Tiberius, over
the tribes of the Eastern Alps. If he wrote unwillingly, his hand had
not lost its cunning. The sentiment is paler and more artificial, but
the old condensation and felicity remain. He begins with rather sad
reluctance. He is old; the one woman whom he loved is dead; his lyric
raptures and his love campaignings are at an end; he is tired of
flattering hopes, of noisy revels, of flower garlands fresh with dew.
Or are they war songs, not love songs, that are wanted? There he is
more helpless still. It needs a Pindar worthily to extol a Caesar: he is
no Pindar; and so we have an ode in honour of the Theban bard. And yet,
as chosen lyrist of the Roman race, he cannot altogether refuse the
call. Melpomene, who from his cradle marked him for her own, can still
shed on him if she will the power to charm, can inspire in him "music of
the swan." So, slowly, the wasting lyric fire revives; we get the
martial odes to conquering Drusus and to Lollius, the panegyrics on
Augustus and Tiberius, all breathing proud consciousness that "the Muse
opens the good man's grave and lifts him to the gods"; that immortality
can be won only by the poet's pen, and that it is in his own power to
confer it.

[Illustration: _Becchetti photo._

THE FORUM RESTORED AS IN A.D. 80.

(Reproduced by special permission.)]

The remaining poems are in the old spirit, but are somewhat mournful
echoes of the past. They remind us of the robin's winter song--"Hark to
him weeping," say the country folk, as they listen to the music which
retains the sweetness but has lost what Wordsworth calls the gushes of
the summer strains. There is still an ode to Venus; its prayer not now
"come to bless thy worshipper"; but "leave an old heart made callous by
fifty years, and seek some younger votary." There is an ode to Spring.
Spring brought down from heaven his earliest Muse; it came to him
charged with youthful ardours, expectations, joys; now its only message
is that change and death attend all human hopes and cares. Like an army
defeated, the snow has retreated; the Graces and the Nymphs can dance
unclad in the soft warm air. But summer will thrust out spring, autumn
summer, then dull winter will come again; will come to the year, will
come to you and me. Not birth nor eloquence nor virtue can save from
Minos' judgement seat; like Aeneas, Tullus, Ancus, like all the great
ones of the earth, we shall soon be nameless shades and a poor pinch of
dust. More of the old buoyant glee comes back in a festal invitation
to one Virgilius, not the poet. There is a ring of Tom Moore in Sir
Theodore Martin's rendering of it.

         *       *       *       *       *

  On the young grass reclined, near the murmur of fountains,
    The shepherds are piping the song of the plains,
  And the god who loves Arcady's purple-hued mountains,
    The god of the flocks, is entranced by their strains.

         *       *       *       *       *

  To the winds with base lucre and pale melancholy!
    In the flames of the pyre these, alas! will be vain;
  Mix your sage ruminations with glimpses of folly,
    'Tis delightful at times to be somewhat insane!


There follows a savage assault on one Lyce, an ancient beauty who had
lost her youthful charms, but kept up her youthful airs:

  Where now that beauty? where those movements? where
    That colour? what of her, of her is left,
      Who, breathing Love's own air,
        Me of myself bereft!
  Poor Lyce! spared to raven's length of days;
    That youth may see, with laughter and disgust,
      A firebrand, once ablaze,
        Now smouldering in grey dust.


Poor Lyce indeed! what had she done to be so scourged? One address we
miss: there is no ode in this book to Maecenas, who was out of favour
with Augustus, and had lost all political influence. But the friend is
not sunk in the courtier. The Ides or 13th of April is his old patron's
birthday--a nativity, says Horace, dearer to him almost than his own,
and he keeps it always as a feast. With a somewhat ghostly resurrection
of voluptuousness dead and gone he bids Phyllis come and keep it with
him. All things are ready, a cask of Alban nine years old is broached,
the servants are in a stir, the altar wreathed for sacrifice, the flames
curling up the kitchen chimney, ivy and parsley gathered to make a
wreath for Phyllis' hair. Come then, sweet girl, last of my loves; for
never again shall this heart take fire at a woman's face--come, and
learn of me a tune to sing with that dear voice, and drive away dull
care. I am told that every man in making love assures the charmer that
no woman shall ever succeed her in his regards; but this is probably
a veritable amorous swan-song. He was older than are most men at
fifty-two. Years as they pass, he sadly says, bereave us one by one
of all our precious things; of mirth, of loves, of banquets; at last
the Muse herself spreads wings to follow them. "You have sported long
enough," she says, "with Amaryllis in the shade, you have eaten and
drunk your fill, it is time for you to quit the scene." And so the
curtain falls.

       *       *       *       *       *

To our great loss there is no contemporary portrait of Horace. He
tells us himself (Ep. II, ii, 214; I, xx, 29) that he was short of
stature, his hair black but early tinged with grey; that he loved to
bask in sunshine, that his temper was irascible but easily appeased.
In advanced life he became fat; Augustus jests with him rather coarsely
on his protuberant figure. The portrait prefixed to this volume is
from a Contorniate, or bronze medallion of the time of Constantine,
representing the poet's likeness as traditionally preserved amongst
his countrymen three hundred years after his death.

The oldest extant manuscript of his works is probably that in the public
library of Berne, and dates from the ninth century. The earliest printed
edition, bearing neither date nor printer's name, is supposed to have
been published at Milan in 1470. Editions were also printed at Florence
and at Venice in 1482, and a third at Venice in 1492. An illustrated
edition on vellum was brought out by Aldus in 1501, and reissued in
1509, 1514, 1519. The Florence Press of the Giunti produced splendid
specimens in 1503, 1514, 1519. Between this date and the end of the
century seven more came forth from famous presses. Of modern editions
we may notice the vellum Bodoni folio of 1791, and the matchless Didot
of 1799 with its exquisite copperplate vignettes. Fortunate is the
collector who possesses the genuine first edition of Pine's "Horace,"
1733. It is known by an error in the text, corrected in the subsequent
and less bibliographically valuable impression of the same year.
A beautifully pictorial book is Dean Milman's; the student will prefer
Orelli, Macleane, Yonge, Munro and King, or Dean Wickham's scholarly
volumes.

       *       *       *       *       *

In composing this modest little book I have had in view principally
readers altogether ignorant of Latin, but wishing to know something of
a writer lauded enthusiastically by all classical scholars: they will
observe that I have not introduced into its pages a single Latin word.
I have nourished also the hope that it might be serviceable to those
who have forgotten, but would like to recover, the Horace which they
learned at school; and to them I would venture to recommend the little
copy of the Latin text with Conington's version attached, in "Bell's
Pocket Classics." Latinless readers of course must read him in English
or not at all. No translation can quite convey the cryptic charm of
any original, whether poetry or prose. "Only a bishop," said Lord
Chesterfield, "is improved by translation." But prose is far easier to
render faithfully than verse; and I have said that either Conington's
or Dean Wickham's version of the Satires and Epistles, which are both
virtually in prose, will tell them what Horace said, and sometimes
very nearly how he said it. On the Odes a host of English writers have
experimented. Milton tried his hand on one, with a result reflecting
neither Milton nor Horace. Dryden has shown what he could have done but
would not do in his tantalising fragment of the Ode to Fortune. Pope
transformed the later Ode to Venus into a purely English poem, with a
gracefully artificial mechanism quite unlike the natural flow of the
original. Marvell's noble "Horatian Ode," with its superb stanzas on
the death of Charles I, shows what he might have achieved, but did
not attempt. Francis' rendering of 1765 is generally respectable,
and in default of a better was universally read and quoted by his
contemporaries: once, in the Ode to Pyrrhus (III, xx) he attains
singular grace of phrase and metre. Cowper translated two Odes and
imitated two more, not without happy touches, but with insertions
and omissions that lower poetry into commonplace. Of Calverley's few
attempts three are notably good; a resounding line in his "Leuconoe"
(I, xi):

  Which flings now the flagging sea-wave on the obstinate sandstone reef,


is at once Horatian and Tennysonian; and his "Oh! where is all thy
loveliness?" in the later Ode to Lyce has caught marvellously the minor
key of tender memory which relieves the brutality of that ruthless
flagellation. Mr. Goldwin Smith's more numerous "Bay Leaves" are
fashioned all in goodly measure; and his "Blest man who far from care
and strife" well transfers to English the breathlessness of Horace's
sham pastoral ecstasy. Of more ambitious translators Bulwer Lytton
catches now and then the careless rapture of his original; Sir Theodore
Martin is always musical and flowing, sometimes miraculously fortunate
in his metres, but intentionally unliteral and free. Conington is
rigidly faithful, oftentimes tersely forcible; but misses lyrical
sweetness. Perhaps, if Marvell, Herrick, Cowley, Prior, the now
forgotten William Spencer, Tom Moore, Thackeray, could be alchemized
into one, they might combine to yield an English Horace. Until eclectic
nature, emulating the Grecian sculptor, shall fashion an archetype from
these seven models, the vernacular student, with his Martin and his
Conington, sipping from each alternately, like Horace's Matine bee
(IV, ii, 27), the terseness of the professor and the sweetness of the
poet, may find in them some echo from the ever-shifting tonality of the
Odes, something of their verbal felicity, something of their thrilling
wistfulness; may strive not quite unsuccessfully, in the words of
Tennyson's "Timbuctoo," to attain by shadowing forth the unattainable.



ON THE "WINES" OF HORACE'S POETRY


The wines whose historic names sparkle through the pages of Horace
have become classical commonplaces in English literature. "Well, my
young friend, we must for once prefer the Falernian to the _vile
Sabinum?_" says Monkbarns to Lovel when the landlord of the Hawes Inn
at Queensferry brings them claret instead of port. It may be well
that we should know somewhat of them.

The choicest of the Italian wines was _Caecuban_, from the
poplar-trained vines grown amongst the swamps of Amyclae in Campania.
It was a heady, generous wine, and required long keeping; so we find
Horace speaking of it as ranged in the farthest cellar end, or "stored
still in our grandsire's binns"(III, xxviii, 2, 3; I, xxxvii, 6); it was
reserved for great banquets, kept carefully under lock and key: "your
heir shall drain the Caecuban you hoarded under a hundred padlocks"
(II, xiv, 25). It was beyond Horace's means, and only rich men could
afford to drink it; we hear of it at Maecenas' table and on board his
galley (I, xx, 9); and it appeared at the costly banquet of Nasidienus
(page 27). With the Caecuban he couples the _Formian_ (I, xx, 11), and
_Falernian_ (I, xx, 10), grown on the southern slopes of the hills
dividing Campania from Latium. "In grassy nook your spirit cheer with
old Falernian vintage," he says to his friend Dellius (II, iii, 6).
He calls it fierce, rough, fiery; recommends mixing it with Chian
wine, or with wine from Surrentum (Sat. II, iv, 55), or sweetening and
diluting it with honey from Mount Hymettus (Sat. II, ii, 15). From
the same district came the _Massic_ wine, also strong and fiery. "It
breeds forgetfulness" (II, vii, 21), he says; advises that it should
be softened by exposure to the open sky (Sat. II, iv, 51). He had a
small supply of it, which he kept for a "happy day" (III, xxi, 6). The
_Calenian_ wine, from Cales near Falernum, was of similar character.
He classes it with Caecuban as being too costly for a poor man's purse
(I, xx, 10): writing late in life to a friend, promises to find him
some, but says that his visitor must bring in exchange an alabaster box
of precious spikenard (IV, xii, 17). Next after these Campanian vintages
came the _Alban_. He tells Phyllis that he will broach for her a cask
of it nine years old (IV, xi, 1). It was offered, too, at Nasidienus'
dinner as an alternative to Caecuban; and Horace praises the raisins
made from its berries (Sat. II, iv, 72). Of the _Sabine_, poorest of
Italian wines, we have spoken (page 23).

The finest Greek wine was _Chian_, thick and luscious; he couples it
in the Epode to Maecenas (IX, 34) with _Lesbian_ which he elsewhere
(I, xvii, 21) calls "innocent" or mild. _Coan_ wine he mentions twice,
commending its medicinal value (Sat. II, iv, 29; II, viii, 9).

In justice to Horace and his friends, it is right to observe that
connoisseurship in wine must not be confounded with inebriety. They
drank to exhilarate, not to stupefy themselves, to make them what
Mr. Bradwardine called _ebrioli_ not _ebrii_; and he repeatedly warns
against excess. The vine was to him "a sacred tree," its god, Bacchus,
a gentle, gracious deity (I, xviii, 1):

  'Tis thine the drooping heart to heal,
    Thy strength uplifts the poor man's horn;
  Inspired by thee, the soldier's steel,
    The monarch's crown, he laughs to scorn.

  III, xxi, 17.


"To total abstainers," he says, "heaven makes all things hard"
(I, xviii, 3); so let us drink, but drink with moderate wisdom, leave
quarrelsomeness in our cups to barbarous Scythians, to brute Centaurs
and Lapithae: let riot never profane our worship of the kindly god. We
must again remember that they did not drink wine neat, as we do, but
always mixed with water. Come, he says to his slave as they sit down,
quench the fire of the wine from the spring which babbles by (II, xi,
19). The common mixture was two of water to one of wine; sometimes nine
of water to three of wine, the Muses to the Graces; very rarely nine of
wine to three of water.

      Who the uneven Muses loves,
  Will fire his dizzy brain with three times three.
      Three once told the Grace approves;
  She with her two bright sisters, gay and free,
      Hates lawless strife, loves decent glee.

  III, xix, 11.



CHRONOLOGY OF HORACE'S LIFE AND WORKS


  ===========================================
  B.C.  AGE.

  65            Born December 8th.

  44    21      Entered as student at Athens.

  43    22      In Brutus' army.

              { Philippi.
  41    24    {
              { Return to Rome.

  38    27      Introduced to Maecenas.

  35    30      Satires, Book I.

  30    35      Satires, Book II, and Epodes.

  23    42      Odes I-III.

  20    45      Epistles, Book I.

  19    46      Epistles, Book II, ii.

  17    48      The Century Hymn.

  13    52      Odes, Book IV.

  13    52      Epistle to Augustus.

  10?   55?     Art of Poetry.

   8    57      Died November 17th.
  ===========================================



INDEX


Actium, 53.

Addison, 37, 49.

Aelius, Lamia, 65.

Agrippa, 65.

Anio, 19-21.

Antony, 26.

Archilochus, 13, 19.

Argiletum, 54.

Aristius, Fuscus, 21, 36, 42, 61, 66.

Arnold, Matthew, 55, 68.

Asella, 43.

Asterie, 68.

Athens, 11, 50.

Aufidus, 9, 73.

Augustus, 15, 28, 29, 45, 51, 56, 57, 65, 75, 77, 78.


Bandusia, 10, 72.

Barine, 68.

Brundusium, 17.

Brutus, 12, 13.


Calverley, 80.

Capitoline Hill, 16, 24-26, 65.

Chesterfield, 79.

Clients, 17.

Conington, 46, 81.

Coverley, 11.

Cowper, 80.


De Vere, Sir Stephen, 71.

Digentia, 21.

Dryden, 79.


Eliot, G., 67.

Enipeus, 68.

Epicureans, 11.

Epicurus, 55.


Fanshaw, Sir R., 59.

Florac, 23, 44.

Florus, 40, 44.

Fonteius Capito, 16.

Forum, 24, etc.

Fufius, 34.


Gallio, 36.

Goldwin Smith, 54, 80.


Homer: Iliad, 11, 37, 43;
  Odyssey, 44.

Horace: childhood, 10;
  studies at Athens, 11;
  influence of Brutus, 12;
  Philippi, 13;
  struggle at Rome, 13;
  introduction to Maecenas, 14;
  Sabine farm, 19;
  publishes Satires, 30;
  Epistles, 37;
  Epodes, 52;
  Odes, 55;
  Swan Song, 74;
  his death, 29, 77;
  editions of his works, 78;
  his "wines," 82;
  bibliography, 85.


Jews in Rome, 36.

Juvenal, 17, 23, 31.


Lalla Rookh, 69.

Lanciani, Professor, 25.

Lollius, 43, 66.

Lucilius, 13, 31, 48.

Lyce, 80.

Lydia, 69, 70.

Lytton, E. B., 66, 80.


Maecenas, 14, 17, 27-29, 38, 51-54, 62, 64.

Martin, Sir Theodore, 76, 80.

Marvell, 80, 81.

Milman, 38.

Milton, 41, 53, 60-62, 71, 79.

Murena, 66.


Newman, Cardinal, 51.


Ofellus, 32.

Omar Khayyám, 23, 63.

Orbilius, 11.


Pattison, Mark, 72.

Philippi, 13, 32.

Philippus, 34.

Phyllis, 66, 67, 77.

Pindar, 75.

Polemon, 35.

Pope, 27, 41, 44, 47-50, 79.

Pope Leo XIII, 64.

Postumus, 63.


Sabine farm, 17-19, etc.

Satire, origin of, 30.

Scaliger, 71.

Scott, 22, 82, 84.

Secular hymn, 57, 74.

Seneca, 16.

Septimius, 28, 39, 41, 65.

Sewell, R. C., 20.

Shakespeare, 13.

Sosii, 54, 71.

Steele, 37, 39.

Stoics, 11.

St. Beuve, 51.


Tarentum, 24, 65, 72.

Telephus, 66.

Tennyson, 9, 51, 80, 81.

Terentia, 15, 64.

Thackeray, 37, 59, 81.

Tiberius Nero, 39, 74, 75.

Tibullus, 28, 41, 65.

Tibur, 17, 19, 20, 72.


Vacuna, 21.

Varius, 14, 27.

Varus, 20.

Via Sacra, 25, 26.

Virgil, 14, 28, 38, 44.


Wickham, Dean, 47, 79.

Wordsworth, 22, 24, 75.


Xanthius, 66.



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Transcriber's note:

   The last two advertising pages shown above have been moved down
   from the front of the book so as to not interfere with the
   presentation of the front matter.





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