Carunculae

5100199376_58e4942e09_b

Rex Prusias, cum Hannibali apud eum exsulanti depugnari placeret, negabat se audere, quod exta prohiberent. ‘An tu,’ inquit, ‘carunculae vitulinae mavis quam imperatori veteri credere?’
(Cicero, De Divinatione 2.52)

While Hannibal was in exile at the court of King Prusias he advised the king to go to war, but the king replied, ‘I do not dare, because the entrails forbid.’ ‘And do you,’ said Hannibal, ‘put more reliance in pieces of ox-meat than you do in a veteran commander?’ (tr. William Armistead Falconer)

Threptra

interior_homer_iliadbkiv422to472

Ἔνθ’ ἔβαλ’ Ἀνθεμίωνος υἱὸν Τελαμώνιος Αἴας
ἠΐθεον θαλερὸν Σιμοείσιον, ὅν ποτε μήτηρ
Ἴδηθεν κατιοῦσα παρ’ ὄχθῃσιν Σιμόεντος
γείνατ’, ἐπεί ῥα τοκεῦσιν ἅμ’ ἕσπετο μῆλα ἰδέσθαι·
τοὔνεκά μιν κάλεον Σιμοείσιον· οὐδὲ τοκεῦσι
θρέπτρα φίλοις ἀπέδωκε, μινυνθάδιος δέ οἱ αἰὼν
ἔπλεθ’ ὑπ’ Αἴαντος μεγαθύμου δουρὶ δαμέντι.
πρῶτον γάρ μιν ἰόντα βάλε στῆθος παρὰ μαζὸν
δεξιόν· ἀντικρὺ δὲ δι’ ὤμου χάλκεον ἔγχος
ἦλθεν· ὃ δ’ ἐν κονίῃσι χαμαὶ πέσεν αἴγειρος ὣς
ἥ ῥά τ’ ἐν εἱαμενῇ ἕλεος μεγάλοιο πεφύκει
λείη, ἀτάρ τέ οἱ ὄζοι ἐπ’ ἀκροτάτῃ πεφύασι·
τὴν μέν θ’ ἁρματοπηγὸς ἀνὴρ αἴθωνι σιδήρῳ
ἐξέταμ’, ὄφρα ἴτυν κάμψῃ περικαλλέϊ δίφρῳ·
ἣ μέν τ’ ἀζομένη κεῖται ποταμοῖο παρ’ ὄχθας.
τοῖον ἄρ’ Ἀνθεμίδην Σιμοείσιον ἐξενάριξεν
Αἴας διογενής.
(Homer, Il. 4.473-489)

Then Telamonian Aias struck Anthemion’s son, the vigorous youth Simoeisius, whom his mother had born beside the banks of Simois, as she came down from Ida, where she had followed with her parents to see their flocks. For this reason they called him Simoeisius; yet he paid not back to his dear parents the recompense of his upbringing, and but brief was the span of his life, as he was laid low by the spear of great-hearted Aias. For as he strode among the foremost he was struck on the right of his chest beside the nipple; and clean through his shoulder went the spear of bronze, and he fell to the ground in the dust like a poplar tree that has grown up in the bottom land of a great marsh, smooth, but from its top grow branches: this a chariot-maker has felled with the gleaming iron so that he may bend a wheel rim for a beautiful chariot, and it lies drying by a river’s banks. In this way did Zeus-born Aias slay Simoeisius, son of Anthemion. (tr. Augustus Taber Murray, revised by William F. Wyatt)

Iuvet

0007_0001_frascati

Rura colam, frugumque aderit mea Delia custos,
area dum messes sole calente teret,
aut mihi servabit plenis in lintribus uvas
pressaque veloci candida musta pede.
consuescet numerare pecus; consuescet amantis
garrulus in dominae ludere verna sinu.
illa deo sciet agricolae pro vitibus uvam,
pro segete spicas, pro grege ferre dapem.
illa regat cunctos, illi sint omnia curae:
at iuvet in tota me nihil esse domo.
(Tibullus 1.5.21-30)

I’ll live in the country, and while the harvest’s threshed
in the hot sun, my Delia will be there, guarding the crop,
or she’ll watch over the grapes in the brimming troughs
when agile feet trample the gleaming must.
She’ll be used to counting flocks: she’ll be used to a child
babbling, a slave’s, lovingly playing in its mistress’s lap.
She’ll know to offer the country god grapes for the vines
wheat ears for the harvest, food for the flocks.
She’ll rule everyone, all things will be in her care:
and I’ll joy in being nothing in that house.
(tr. Tony Kline)

Porcaria

dscf4453

Vulva eiecto partu melior quam edito; eiecticia vocatur illa, haec porcaria. primiparae suis optima, contra effetis. a partu, praeterquam eodem die suis occisae, livida ac macra; nec novellarum suum praeter primiparas probatur, potiusque veterum, dum ne effetarum, nec biduo ante partum aut post partum aut quo eiecerint die. proxima ab eiecticia est occisae uno die post partum; huius et sumen optimum, si modo fetus non hauserit; eiecticiae deterrimum.
(Pliny the Elder, Nat. Hist. 11.210-211)

Sow’s paunch is a better dish after a miscarriage than after a succesful delivery; in the former case it is called ‘miscarryings’ and in the latter ‘farrowings.’ That of a sow farrowing for the first time is best, and the contrary with those exhausted with breeding. After farrowing the paunch is a bad colour and lacking in fat, unless the sow was killed the same day; nor is that of young sows thought much of, except from those farrowing for the first time, and the paunch of old sows is preferable provided they are not quite worn out, and not killed on the actual day of farrowing or the day before or the day after. The paunch next best to miscarryings is that of a sow slaughtered the day after farrowing; also its paps are the best, provided it has not yet suckled the litter; the paps of a sow that has had a miscarriage are the worst. (tr. Harris Rackham)

Paedagogia

Idem Celsus eodem libro ait etiam suppellecticarios et ceteros hoc genus servos contineri, id est ministeria, quibus instructus erat in eo fundo (extra ea quae libertatem acceperunt), et qui rure morari solebant.
si instructum fundum legasset, ea paedagogia, quae ibi habebat, ut, cum ibi venisset, praesto essent in triclinio, legato continentur.
contubernales quoque servorum, id est uxores, et natos, instructo fundo contineri verum est.
instructo autem fundo et bibliothecam et libros, qui illic erant, ut quotiens venisset uteretur, contineri constat. sed si quasi apotheca librorum utebatur, contra erit dicendum.
(Ulpian, Dig. 33.7.12.31-34)

Celsus also says, in the same Book, that slaves who have care of the furniture and other slaves of this kind are included; that is to say, household slaves, who are employed on the land, with the exception of those who have received their freedom, and who are accustomed to reside in the country.
If a testator should devise land already provided with the means of cultivation, young slaves who are being instructed in the service of the table, and whom the testator was accustomed to have there, whenever he came, are embraced in the legacy.
The members of the slaves’ families, that is, their wives and children, are undoubtedly included in the devise of land with its equipment.
Where land with its equipment is devised, it is well established that the library, and any books upon the premises, which the head of the household made use of whenever he came, are included. If, however, a warehouse should be used for the storage of the books, the contrary opinion must be held. (tr. Samuel P. Scott)

Prosekeimēn

Ancient Greek vase, school lesson, writing and music

Πάλιν τοίνυν τὸ μὲν παρ’ ἄνδρα πεφοιτηκέναι λόγων προχέοντα κάλλος εὐδαίμονος φοιτητοῦ, τὸ δὲ μὴ ὁπόσον ἄξιον, ἀλλ’ ὁπότε μὲν ἀφωσιούμην φοιτᾶν, κινοῦντος δὲ ἤδη πρὸς μαθήσεις ἔρωτος οὐκ ἔχειν τὸν μεταδώσοντα θανάτῳ σβεσθέντος τοῦ ῥεύματος, τουτὶ δὲ ἀθλίου. ποθῶν μὲν τοίνυν τὸν οὐκέτ’ ὄντα, χρώμενος δὲ τοῖς οὖσιν, εἰδώλοις γέ τισι σοφιστῶν, ὥσπερ οἱ τοῖς ἐκ κριθῶν ἄρτοις ἀπορίᾳ γε τοῦ βελτίονος, ἐπειδὴ ἤνυτον οὐδέν, ἀλλ’ ἦν κίνδυνος ἡγεμόσι τυφλοῖς ἑπόμενον εἰς βάραθρον ἀμαθίας πεσεῖν, τοῖς μὲν χαίρειν εἶπον, παύσας δὲ τὴν μὲν ψυχὴν τοῦ τίκτειν, τὴν δὲ γλῶτταν τοῦ λέγειν, τὴν δὲ χεῖρα τοῦ γράφειν ἓν ἔδρων μόνον, μνήμῃ τὰ τῶν παλαιῶν ἐκτώμην συνὼν ἀνδρὶ μνημονικωτάτῳ τε καὶ οἵῳ τῶν παρ’ ἐκείνοις καλῶν ἐμπείρους ἀπεργάζεσθαι νέους. καὶ οὕτω δή τι αὐτῷ προσεκείμην ἀκριβῶς, ὥστ’ οὐδ’ ἀπαλλαττομένου τῶν νέων ἀπηλλαττόμην, ἀλλὰ καὶ δι’ ἀγορᾶς ἐν χεροῖν τε ἡ βίβλος, καὶ ἔδει τι τὸν ἄνδρα καὶ πρὸς ἀνάγκην λέγειν, ἣν ἐν τῷ παραχρῆμα μὲν δῆλος ἦν δυσχεραίνων, χρόνοις δὲ ἐν ὑστέροις ἐπῄνει.
(Libanius, Bios 8)

Again, I was lucky as a pupil in that I attended the lectures of a teacher with a fine flow of oratory; my bad luck was that my attendance was not as regular as it should have been but occurred only in a most perfunctory fashion, and then, when my desire did spur me on to study, I found none to instruct me, for death had stopped his flow. So, though I longed for my dead teacher, I began to frequent the living, mere shadows of teachers, as men eat loaves of barley bread for want of anything better. However, when I found that I was making no progress but was running the risk of falling into the bottomless pit of ignorance through following blind guides, I had done with them. I restrained my mind from composing, my tongue from speaking, and my hand from writing, and I concentrated upon one thing only – the memorization of the works of classical authors – and studied under a man of prodigious memory who was capable of instilling into his pupils an appreciation of the excellence of the classics. I attached myself to him so wholeheartedly that I would not leave him even after class had been dismissed, but would trail after him, book in hand, even through the city square, and he had to give me some instruction, whether he liked it or not. At the time he was obviously annoyed at this importunity, but in later days he was full of praise for it. (tr. Albert Francis Norman)

Taxopisthe

41090831_85ddf5f98c

Διέβαινε ποταμὸν ὀξὺν ὄντα τῷ ῥείθρῳ
κυρτὴ κάμηλος, εἶτ’ ἔχεζε. τοῦ δ’ ὄνθου
φθάνοντος αὐτὴν εἶπεν “ἦ κακῶς πράσσω·
ἔμπροσθεν ἤδη τἀξόπισθέ μου βαίνει.”
[πόλις ἄν τις εἴποι τὸν λόγον τὸν Αἰσώπου,
ἧς ἔσχατοι κρατοῦσιν ἀντὶ τῶν πρώτων.]
(Babrius, Fab. 40)

A humpbacked camel was crossing a swiftly flowing river when he defecated. Seeing that the dung was floating ahead of him, he said: “Truly, I’m in a bad way; what ought to be behind me is now going in front.” [A state in which the worst citizens are in power, instead of the best, might tell this story of Aesop’s.] (tr. Ben Edwin Perry)