Excoluisse

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Hoc iacet in tumulo raptus puerilibus annis
Pantagathus, domini cura dolorque sui,
vix tangente vagos ferro resecare capillos
doctus et hirsutas excoluisse genas.
sis licet, ut debes, tellus, placata levisque,
artificis levior non potes esse manu.
(Martial, Ep. 6.52)

In this tomb lies Pantagathus, snatched away in his boyhood years, his master’ s care and grief, skilled to cut straying locks and shave hairy cheeks with steel that barely touched them. Though you be kind and light, earth, as you should be, you cannot be light er than the artist’s hand. (tr. David Roy Shackleton Bailey)

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